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"Nudol" Russia's new ASAT

Discussion in 'Space Technology' started by Feanor, Dec 4, 2015.

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  1. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Not many know that in addition to the S-500, Russia is working on what appears to be a dedicated ASAT. A drawing of the proposed TEL for it was leaked to the press, in the form of a corporate calendar picture. And now there is information that it has been tested 3 times. Twice unsuccessfully, and once, most recently on Nov 18th, successfully. The info on the testing comes from the US.

    Первое уÑпешное иÑпытание противоÑпутниковой ракеты ÑиÑтемы "Ðудоль" - bmpd

    While information is lacking, and the S-500 was supposed to be able to reach targets in near orbit, there's a good chance that work in that direction has not proceeded well, and the Nudol is also a full fledged ASAT, not just something for the low hanging fruit.
     
  2. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    the problem for the average reader is that they don't understand that any ASAT is about killing a Sat in a specific orbit range.

    Its not about an ability to kill "all" satellites. eg it will be about killing LEO sats etc....

    the result is that if people don't comprehend the differences you end up with "youtube quality" commentary.
     
  3. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It's my understanding, though I may be wrong, that Nudol is not a missile. It's a system that includes a family of missiles with varying characteristics. Whereas the S-500 is supposed to have only some limited ASAT potential (it's not even described as ASAT, it's described as being able to reach low-orbit, presumably in anticipation of military aircraft that operate at or near those altitudes), Nudol is dedicated to the ASAT mission. It's still not clear how they intend to link the launch units with target detection and tracking, though the stuff they've been doing with the Krona complex suggests a direction for further exploration.

    It's also important to note that currently the VVS, PVO, and Space Troops are all under a single structure, the air-space command (VKS in Russian). This was only done recently and provides another hint as to what exactly the Nudol may be aiming at.

    Finally there may be some intent to include an airborne component in this ASAT, likely based on either existing MiG-31s or the successor interceptor currently being worked on.

    Thus individual components of the system will deal with different kinds of orbital targets.
     
  4. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    so fundamentally the S500 is the launch vehicle?
     
  5. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    No. Just what I'm trying to say. This is completely separate from the S-500. The S-500 will only deal with near orbit. The Nudol is a family of missiles with new unique TELs and C4I, that deal, in theory, with higher orbit targets, and the third component, the further off from the looks of it, is an air-launched missile with a MiG-31 or MiG-41 carrier.

    The S-500 will be predominantly aimed at aircraft. The ASAT, at least from everything they've said so far, is a secondary (perhaps simply second, rather then secondary) capability for that system.
     
  6. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Just as clarification, it's more likely that Nudol is linked to the A-235 BMD, then to the S-500. In fact there are some who think that the Nudol will be part of the A-235, meaning the BMD will have anti-space capabilities built in. In fact it may be, if this turns out to be true, no longer accurate to classify the A-235 as BMD, but rather a space-defense system? However for the time being I'm proceeding on the assumption that the Nudol and the A-235 are separate, if related, projects.

    It's important to note OKR Nudol and the OKR for the A-235 are different projects. That one is called OKR Samolyot-M.
     
  7. kato

    kato Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

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    The last Russian launch on Dec 5th included KYuA-1 (Kosmos 2512) as a passenger for LEO, a 15-kg radar calibration sphere to be used specifically by Almaz-Antey - i.e. a target for ground radars. Unlike the main payload, KYuA-1 deployed succesfully. A second unit will launch sometime next year. Just noting it in this context.
     
  8. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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  9. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    And another successful test reported. Maybe someone with more knowledge in the area can comment on whether this many tests without an actual intercept are normal. I also can't help but wonder how the recent adjustments in spending plans have affected this development.

    ВМФ РоÑÑии переданы отремонтированные вертолеты Ка-29 - bmpd
    Successful Nudol ASAT test reported - Blog - Russian strategic nuclear forces
     
  10. foxdemon

    foxdemon New Member

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    They would be unlikely to do an actual intercept as that will result in too much additional space junk. The situation is that orbital debris is already thought to be close to a cascade starting, if it hasn't already.

    One must wonder though, how will network centric warfare cope when at least the lower orbits become inhospitable for satellite operation.
     
  11. humphuy

    humphuy New Member

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    the problem for the average reader is that they don't understand that any ASAT is about killing a Sat in a specific orbit range.

    Its not about an ability to kill "all" satellites. eg it will be about killing LEO sats etc....

    the result is that if people don't comprehend the differences you end up with "youtube quality" commentary.
     
  12. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    I think you need to do some further reading and start understanding where some of us work or probably have worked ....