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R-17 Elbrus

Short-range ballistic missile

Scud

The Scud ballistic missiles are still operational with at least 10 countries

 
 
Country of origin Soviet Union
Entered service 1967
Crew 8 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight 37.4 t
Length ~ 12 m
Width ~ 3 m
Height ~ 3.5 m
Missile
Missile length 11.16 m
Missile diameter 0.8 m
Missile weight (combat) 5.86 t
Warhead weight 0.98 t
Warhead type Nuclear, high explosive, chemical, or thermobaric
Range of fire 300 km
CEP 450 m
Mobility
Engine D12A-525 diesel
Engine power 525 hp
Maximum road speed 45 km/h
Range 450 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step ~ 0.6 m
Trench ~ 2 m
Fording 1.3 m

 

   The Soviet R-17 Elbrus ballistic missile is more commonly known in the West as the Scud. It was designed to engage important enemy targets such as airfields, command posts, large concentrations of troops and vehicles, air defense batteries, supply depots and so on. Development of this ballistic missile began in the Soviet Union in the mid 1950s. Its predecessor was the R-11 Zemlya. It was based on a modified tracked IS-2 heavy tank chassis. This version was known in the West as the Scud-A. This missile had a range of 150 km. Only 100 units of the original R-11 Zemlya launchers were built. In the early 1960s the missile was redeveloped. Its tracked chassis was replaced by a new 8x8 high-mobility truck chassis. The new version, the R-17 Elbrus, was was much more numerous. It is known in the West as the SS-1C or Scud-B. Some sources report that it was first deployed in 1964. This ballistic missile was first publicly revealed in 1965. Officially this missile entered service with the Soviet Army in 1967. During the Cold War the Scud-B was widely exported. Soviets exported these systems to Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, GDR, Egypt, Hungary,  Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Libya, North Korea, Poland, Romania, Syria, Vietnam and possibly some other countries. This ballistic missile saw combat during a number of military conflicts. Soviet Army replaced these missiles with short-lived Oka (SS-23 or Spider) in the 1980s. Currently Russian Army acquires the new new Iskander (SS-26 or Stone), which has a similar range to the Scud. However Scuds are still in service with at least 10 countries, including some former Soviet republics.

   The missile is over 11 m long. Its maximum diameter is 0.8 m. This missile is propelled by a liquid fuel. Its empty weight is just over 2 000 kg. Once fuelled it weights 5 862 kg. Warhead weights nearly 1 000 kg. These missiles have nuclear (100 kT), high explosive (1 016 kg), chemical (985 kg) and thermobaric warheads. Maximum range of fire is 300 km. Once launched missile reaches its target within 5 minutes. Minimum range of fire is 50 km. The Scud missile has inertial guidance. By modern standards this missile is inaccurate. Its CEP is about 450 m.

   The Scud-B is based on a MAZ-543A heavy high-mobility wheeled chassis. Vehicle is powered by a 38.9-liter diesel engine, developing 525 hp. It is a standard tank engine. Vehicle has a maximum speed of 45 km/h on roads and 15 km/h over rough terrain.

   Each launcher vehicle is escorted by a whole host of support vehicle. It is escorted by reloading vehicle, fuel tanker, crane, command vehicle, positioning vehicle, and some other support vehicles. Also there is a vehicle which carries warhead for the missile. During the cold war Scuds were also escorted by decontamination vehicles.

   The name Scud has been widely used to refer the wide variety of derivative variants developed in other countries and based on the Soviet design. Egypt, Iran, Iraq, and North Korea developed their own tactical missiles, based on the Scud. Some of them have a maximum range of up to 850 km. China also cloned this ballistic missile.

 

Variants

 

   SS-1D or Scud-C, an extended-range version. It had a maximum range of 500-600 km. However warhead size and accuracy were greatly reduced. It was not adopted by the Soviet Army, as a more capable TR-1 Temp (Western reporting name SS-12 or Scaleboard) was selected.

  9K720 Aerofon (SS-1E or Scud-D). It had a warhead that separated from the missile body. Missile was also fitted with terminal guidance system and was much more accurate and had a CEP of 50 m. The systems was not acquired by the Soviet Army. As at the time more advanced ballistic missiles, such as the Tochka (SS-21 Scarab) were used. Instead in the 1990s it was proposed for export customers as an upgrade for their Scud-B systems.

   Barkan-1 is a Yemeni version of the "Scud" series. Yemeni modifications resulted in an 800 km range.

   Hwasong-6 is a North Korean variant of the "Scud". It was introduced in 1991. The Hwasong-6 has a range of 500 km. It is also launched using a TEL, and has been exported to several other nations, some of which produce it under license.

 

 

Scud

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Scud

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Scud

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