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    Russian Navy to adopt new Bulava ballistic missile in 2009

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    Russia will adopt new Bulava-M submarine-based ballistic missiles for service with the Navy and commission the first Borey-class strategic nuclear submarine in 2009, a senior Navy official said on Friday.

    MOSCOW, September 19 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will adopt new Bulava-M submarine-based ballistic missiles for service with the Navy and commission the first Borey-class strategic nuclear submarine in 2009, a senior Navy official said on Friday.

    The Navy on Thursday conducted a scheduled launch of the Bulava missile from the submerged Dmitry Donskoi, a Typhoon-class ballistic missile nuclear submarine, in northern Russia's White Sea, and the missile reached its target at the Kura testing grounds on the Kamchatka Peninsula, about 6,700 kilometers (4,200 miles) east of Moscow.

    "The successful launch of the ballistic missile allows us to assert with certainty that both the Bulava missile and the Yury Dolgoruky submarine will be put into service in 2009," the official said.

    The Bulava (SS-NX-30), developed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology, is designed for deployment on Borey-class Project 955 nuclear-powered submarines.

    The first submarine in the series, the Yury Dolgoruky (Image gallery), was built at the Sevmash plant in the northern Arkhangelsk Region and is currently undergoing sea trials.

    The submarine has a length of 170 meters (580 feet), a body diameter of around 13 meters (42 feet), and a submerged speed of about 29 knots.

    It will be equipped with 16 Bulava ballistic missiles, each carrying up to 10 nuclear warheads and having a range of 8,000 kilometers (5,000 miles).

    Two other Borey-class nuclear submarines, the Alexander Nevsky and the Vladimir Monomakh, are currently under construction at the Sevmash plant.

    Fourth-generation Borey-class nuclear-powered submarines armed with Bulava missiles will form the core of Russia's fleet of modern strategic submarines.

    Russia plans to build at least seven $890-million submarines of this class by 2015.

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