Russia is all set to operationally deploy its latest hypersonic intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) Sarmat, designed by Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau, by the year 2022. Sarmat ICBM (also known as SS-X-30 Satan II or SS-30 Satan 2) which is designed to penetrate any existing missile defence system will enter service with Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces (RVSN) said RVSN commander Sergey Karakayev. Speaking to Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper, he said it heralds a new era of strategic hypersonic weapons. The RS-28 Sarmat is a silo-based ICBM system using heavy liquid-propellant. Being developed since the early 2000s, in response to the US withdrawal from Anti Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty in 2002, Sarmat ICBM is scheduled to replace the existing R-36M2 Voyevoda ICBM. Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile weighs about 200 tonnes and is capable of carrying a payload of around 10 tonnes.
Sarmat ICBM is capable of carrying multiple payloads including Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) which is designed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology. Avangard had previous designations of Objekt 4202, Yu-71 and Yu-74. It can be carried by an ICBM as a Multiple Independent Reentry Vehicle (MIRV). Russia began creating Avangard HDV since 1985 in response to the US Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) (Source: Tass), as per Company Honorary CEO and Honorary Chief Designer Gerbert Yefremov, MIC NPO Mashinostroyenia (now part of Tactical Missiles Corporation). The then US President Ronald announced the SDI, better known as the Star Wars program, on March 23, 1983. Avangard was initially tested on the UR-100N UTTKh missiles ( RS-18A ICBM) and is now in service since December 2019. As per the official Russian literature, Avangard boost-glide vehicle is capable of flying at over 20 times the speed of sound in the dense layers of the atmosphere, manoeuvring by its flight path and its altitude and breaching any anti-missile defense.
Russia is currently rearming its Strategic Missile Force with RS-24 silo-based and road-mobile ICBMs by 2024. RS-24 ICBM is also known as RT-24 Yars or Topol-MR.
Russia’s Strategic Missile Force currently operate multiple types of ICBM missile systems including R-36M2 (SS-18 Satan) heavy missiles, Avangard systems (UR-100NUTTKh, SS-19 Mod 4 missiles), Topol (SS-25) road-mobile system, Topol-M (SS-27) silo-based and mobile systems and RS-24 Yars missiles [SS-27 Mod 2] silo-based and mobile systems.