Friday, July 23, 2010
Faulty engine nozzle blamed for latest Bulava missile failure
The latest failure of Russia's ill-fated Bulava ballistic missile test was caused by a defective engine nozzle, a government source said on Friday.
The latest launch of the Bulava (SS-NX-30), a three-stage liquid and solid-propellant submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), from the Dmitry Donskoy nuclear submarine in the White Sea ended in failure in December 2009.
Since December, all further test launches of the Bulava have been suspended pending the results of a government commission probe.
The Bulava has officially suffered seven failures in 12 tests. Some analysts suggest that in reality the number of failures was considerably larger, with Russian military expert Pavel Felgenhauer contending that of the Bulava's 12 test launches, only one was entirely successful.