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  Wednesday, October 23, 2019
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The Russian Strategic Missile Troops launched a mobile intercontinental ballistic missile Topol from the northern cosmodrome Plesetsk at 10:44 Moscow time on Tuesday
The goal of the launch is a check of reliability of the missile that has been on combat duty for 20 years, a cosmodrome official told Itar-Tass. In 20 minutes after the blast-off, the warhead of the missile was to hit a target on Kura testing ground on Kamchatka, he said. The mobile missile Topol was designed at the Moscow Institute of Heat Engineering by a team led by Alexander Nadiradze. The three-stage solid propulsion Topol is called SS-25 in the NATO classification. It is equipped with means for overcoming air defence systems. Its launchers are borne on seven-axis trucks. The first Topol was fired from the Plesetsk testing ground in February 1983. The first regiment of mobile Topols was placed on combat duty near Yoshkar-Ola in July 1985. The operational life of this missile was initially set at ten years, but it was repeatedly extended. The firing range of Topol is 10,000 kilometres, the lift-off weight 45 tonnes and weight of its warhead one tonne. The missile’s combat patrol area is 125,000 square kilometres. Nine regiments armed with 81 Topol launchers were based in Belarus before the collapse of the Soviet Union. After the break-up of the Soviet Union, Russia withdrew this weaponry in 1993-96. According to the SIPRI-204 yearly of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Russia had 312 missiles Topol at the beginning of 2004. Each was equipped with a 559 kilotonne warhead.
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