| R-21 |
(NATO reporting name: SS-N-5 'Sark'/'Serb')
|Type||submarine-launched ballistic missile|
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|In service||15 May 1963 until 1991|
|Used by||Soviet Union|
|Designer||Makeyev Rocket Design Bureau|
|Mass||16.5 t (16.2 long tons; 18.2 short tons)|
|Length||13.0 m (42 ft 8 in)|
|Diameter||1.2 m (47 in)|
|Engine||liquid-fuel rocket, single stage|
|1,300 km (700 nmi) upgraded to 1,650 km (890 nmi)|
|Accuracy||2.8 km CEP|
|Golf II-class, Hotel II-class submarines|
The R-21 (Russian : Р-21; NATO: SS-N-5 'Sark/Serb'; GRAU: 4K55) was a submarine-launched ballistic missile in service with the Soviet Union between 1963 and 1989. It was the first Soviet nuclear missile that could be launched from a submerged submarine, and also had twice the range of earlier missiles. It replaced the R-11FM and R-13 (SS-N-4) on many Golf and Hotel-class submarines, and was in turn superseded by the R-27 (SS-N-6 'Serb') missile carried by Yankee-class submarines.
Development of the R-15 and R-21 was initially assigned to Mikhail Yangel's Yuzhnoye Design Office (OKB-586) on 20 March 1958. The project was transferred to Viktor Makeyev's SKB-385 on 17 March 1959. It was intended for the Golf-class submarines (Project 629B); the complete missile system was called the D-4 weapon complex.
The 4th Research Institute had been conducting trials of underwater missile launch systems since 1955 [ citation needed ] but the first successful launch was in 1960 and the first flight of a standard R-21 was in 1962. Over the lifetime of the missile, 193 out of 228 launches were successful.with modified Scuds
The R-21 was probably the basis for the design of the North Korean No Dong (Rodong-1) missile.
Unlike Western designs, the R-21 used a cold launch solid rocket to eject the missile from the flooded launch tube before the main motor ignited. 1,400 km (760 nmi), double that of first-generation sub-launched missiles. The Naval Institute Guide suggests that the range was initially 1300 km, and extended to 1650 km later in the life of the missile. There was a single warhead of approximately 800 kilotons.This allowed missiles to be launched in a water depth of 40-60m. The propulsion system used an IRFNA-Inhibited red fuming nitric acid-amine fuel, AK-27I/TG-02. The AK-27I oxidizer was a mixture of 73% nitric acid, 27% nitrogen tetroxide, and an iodine inhibitory passivant. The fuel was originally used in the Wasserfall rocket under the name TONKA-250 and consisted of 50% triethylamine and 50% xylidine. This gave the R-21 a range of
There was some confusion about the SS-N-4/5/6 series of missiles in the West, the SS-N-5 is normally given the NATO reporting name 'Sark' like the SS-N-4 first carried by the Golf submarines,but some variants were assigned the name 'Serb' normally used for the SS-N-6. Jane's uses 'Sark'.
The missiles replaced first-generation R-11FM and R-13 missiles on some Golf (Project 629) and Hotel (Project 658) class SSBNs, with three missiles per submarine, km-range R-27 (SS-N-6 'Serb') missiles. Seven of the eight Hotel I (Project 658) subs were upgraded to Hotel II (Project 658M) standard, which were retired by 1991.between 1963 and 1967. They were succeeded from 1967 by Yankee-class submarines carrying 2400
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