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Fact Sheets & Briefs

The Nuclear Testing Tally

February 2019

Contacts: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107

Since the first nuclear test explosion on July 16, 1945, at least eight nations have detonated 2,056 nuclear test explosions at dozens of test sites from Lop Nor in China, to the atolls of the Pacific, to Nevada, to Algeria where France conducted its first nuclear device, to western Australia where the U.K. exploded nuclear weapons, the South Atlantic, to Semipalatinsk in Kazakhstan, across Russia, and elsewhere.



Most of the test sites are in the lands of indigenous peoples and far from the capitals of the testing governments. A large number of the early tests—528—were detonated in the atmosphere, which spread radioactive materials through the atmosphere. Many underground nuclear blasts have also vented radioactive material into the atmosphere and left radioactive contamination in the soil.

Type of Test United States USSR/ Russia United Kingdom France China India Pakistan North Korea Total
Atmospheric 215 219 21 50 23 0 0 0 528
Underground 815 496 24 160 22 3 2 6 1,528
Total 1,030* (Does not include atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki) 715 45 210 45 3 2 6 2,056


Through nuclear test explosions, the testing nations have been able to proof-test new warhead designs and create increasingly sophisticated nuclear weapons. In 1996, negotiations on a global Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) were concluded and the treaty was opened for signature on September 24, 1996. The CTBT, which prohibits "any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion" and established a international test monitoring and verification system, has not yet entered into force.

 

United States
(1,030)
First tested:
July 16, 1945.
Last tested:
Sept. 23, 1992.
Signed CTBT:
Sept. 24, 1996.

USSR/Russia
(715 tests)
First tested:
Aug. 29, 1949.
Last tested:
Oct. 24, 1990.
Deposited CTBT Ratification:
June 30, 2000.

United Kingdom
(45 tests)
First tested:
Oct. 3, 1952.
Last tested:
Nov. 26, 1991.
Signed CTBT:
Sept. 24, 1996.
Deposited CTBT Ratification:
Apr. 6, 1998.

France
(210 tests)
First tested:
Feb. 13, 1960.
Last tested:
Jan. 27, 1996.
Signed CTBT:
Sept. 24, 1996.
Deposited CTBT Ratification:
Apr. 6, 1998.

China
(45 tests)
First tested:
Oct. 16, 1964.
Last tested:
July 29, 1996.
Signed CTBT:
Sept. 24, 1996.

India
(3 tests1)
First tested:
May 18, 1974.
Last tested:
May 13, 1998.
Not a CTBT signatory.

Pakistan
(2 tests1)
First tested:
May 28, 1998.
Last tested:
May 30, 1998.
Not a CTBT signatory.

North Korea
(6 tests)
First tested:
Oct. 9, 2006.
Last tested:
Sept. 3, 2017.
Not a CTBT signatory.

Year United States USSR/ Russia United Kingdom France China India Pakistan North Korea Total
1945 1               1
1946 2               2
1947 0               0
1948 3               3
1949 0 1             1
1950 0 0             0
1951 16 2             18
1952 10 0 1           11
1953 11 5 2           18
1954 6 10 0           16
1955 18 6 0           24
1956 18 9 6           33
1957 32 16 7           55
1958 77 34 5           116
1959 0 0 0           0
1960 0 0 0 3         3
1961 10 59 0 2         71
1962 96 79 2 1         178
1963 47 0 0 3         50
1964 45 9 2 3 1       60
1965 38 14 1 4 1       58
1966 48 18 0 7 3       76
1967 42 17 0 3 2       64
1968 56 17 0 5 1       79
1969 46 19 0 0 2       67
1970 39 16 0 8 1       64
1971 24 23 0 5 1       53
1972 27 24 0 4 2       57
1973 24 17 0 6 1       48
1974 22 21 1 9 1 1     55
1975 22 19 0 2 1 0     44
1976 20 21 1 5 4 0     51
1977 20 24 0 9 1 0     54
1978 19 31 2 11 3 0     66
1979 15 31 1 10 1 0     58
1980 14 24 3 12 1 0     54
1981 16 21 1 12 0 0     50
1982 18 19 1 10 1 0     49
1983 18 25 1 9 2 0     55
1984 18 27 2 8 2 0     57
1985 17 10 1 8 0 0     36
1986 14 0 1 8 0 0     23
1987 14 23 1 8 1 0     47
1988 15 16 0 8 1 0     40
1989 11 7 1 9 0 0     28
1990 8 1 1 6 2 0     18
1991 7 0 1 6 0 0     14
1992 6 0 0 0 2 0     8
1993 0 0 0 0 1 0     1
1994 0 0 0 0 2 0     2
1995 0 0 0 5 2 0     7
1996 0 0 0 1 2 0     3
1997 0 0 0 0 0 0     0
1998 0 0 0 0 0 2 2   4
1999-2005 0 0 0 0 0 0 0   0
2006 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
2007-2008 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2009 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
2010 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 02 0
2011 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2012 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2013 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
2014 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2015 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2016 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2
2017 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
2018 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 1,030 715 45 210 45 3 2 6 2,056
NOTE

1. In accordance with the definition of a nuclear test contained in the Threshold Test Ban Treaty and to allow accurate comparison with other countries' figures, India's three simultaneous nuclear explosions on May 11 are counted as only one nuclear test, as are the two explosions on May 13. Likewise, Pakistan's five simultaneous explosions on May 28 are counted as a single test.

2. In the article "Radionuclide Evidence for Low-Yield Nuclear Testing in North Korea in April/May 2010," Lars-Erik De Geer argued that the xexon and barium isotope concentrations in air currents from North Korea in April and May of 2010 were consistent with two low-yield nuclear tests. However, this theory was largely debunked when the Earth Institute at Columbia University measured seismology records and determined that no well-coupled explosion larger than one ton could have occurred during that timeframe. According to the report, such a low yield explosion would have been incapable of advancing the North Korean's technical understanding of a nuclear weapon explosion.

Nuclear Testing

The Status of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty: Signatories and Ratifiers

February 2019

Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107

Despite nearly 20 years of global efforts to promote the entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the treaty’s enactment appears a long way off.

President George H. W. Bush signed into law the unilateral declaration to forego full-scale nuclear weapons testing October 2, 1992. The United States signed the CTBT on September 24, 1996, the day it opened for signature, but the Senate dealt a severe blow to the near-term prospects for U.S. participation when it refused to provide its advice and consent October 13, 1999. President Obama, however, stated in February 2009 that he intended to pursue Senate advice and consent to ratification of the treaty "immediately and aggressively."

The CTBT will formally enter into force after 44 designated “nuclear-capable states” (as listed in Annex 2 of the treaty) have deposited their instruments of ratification with the UN secretary-general. To date, 184 states have signed and 168 have ratified the treaty. Yet of the 44 specified countries, India, Pakistan, and North Korea still have not signed, and only 36 have ratified the treaty.

For more information on the CTBT, see Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty at a Glance.

The following chart identifies the treaty’s signatories and ratifiers. States whose ratification is required for the treaty to take effect are shaded and marked with an asterisk (*).


Total Signatories: 184
Total Ratifiers: 168

Annex 2 Ratifications (out of 44): 36

Country
Signature
Ratification
Afghanistan 9/24/03 9/24/03
Albania 9/27/96 4/23/03
Algeria* 10/15/96 7/11/03
Andorra 9/24/96 7/12/06
Angola 9/27/96 3/20/15
Antigua and Barbuda 4/16/97 1/11/06
Argentina* 9/24/96 12/4/98
Armenia 10/1/96 7/12/06
Australia* 9/24/96 7/9/98
Austria* 9/24/96 3/13/98
Azerbaijan 7/28/97 2/2/99
Bahamas 2/4/05 11/30/07
Bahrain 9/24/96 4/12/04
Bangladesh* 10/24/96 3/8/00
Barbados 1/14/08 1/14/08
Belarus 9/24/96 9/13/00
Belgium* 9/24/96 6/29/99
Belize 11/14/01 3/26/04
Benin 9/27/96 3/6/01
Buhtan    
Bolivia 9/24/96 10/4/99
Bosnia and Herzegovina 9/24/96 10/26/06
Botswana 9/16/02 10/28/02
Brazil* 9/24/96 7/24/98
Brunei Darussalam 1/22/97 1/10/13
Bulgaria* 9/24/96 9/29/99
Burkina Faso 9/27/96 4/17/02
Burundi 9/24/96 9/24/08
Cambodia 9/26/96 11/10/00
Cameroon 11/16/01 2/6/06
Canada* 9/24/96 12/18/98
Cape Verde 10/1/96 3/1/06
Central African Republic 12/19/01 5/26/10
Chad 10/8/96 2/8/13
Chile* 9/24/96 7/12/00
China* 9/24/96  
Colombia* 9/24/96 1/29/08
Comoros 12/12/96  
Congo 2/11/97 9/2/14
Cook Islands 12/5/97 9/6/05
Costa Rica 9/24/96 9/25/01
Côte d'Ivoire 9/25/96 3/11/03
Croatia 9/24/96 3/2/01
Cuba    
Cyprus 9/24/96 7/18/03
Czech Republic 11/12/96 9/11/97
Dem. Republic of Congo* 10/4/96 9/28/04
Denmark 9/24/96 12/21/98
Djibouti 10/21/96 7/15/05
Dominica    
Dominican Republic 10/3/96 9/4/07
Ecuador 9/24/96 11/12/01
Egypt* 10/14/96  
El Salvador 9/24/96 9/11/98
Equatorial Guinea 10/9/96  
Eritrea 11/11/03 11/11/03
Estonia 11/20/96 8/13/99
Ethiopia 9/25/96 8/8/06
Fiji 9/24/96 10/10/96
Finland* 9/24/96 1/15/99
France* 9/24/96 4/6/98
Gabon 10/7/96 9/20/00
Gambia 4/9/03  
Georgia 9/24/96 9/27/02
Germany* 9/24/96 8/20/98
Ghana 10/3/96 06/14/11
Greece 9/24/96 4/21/99
Grenada 10/10/96 8/19/98
Guatemala 9/20/99 1/12/12
Guinea 10/3/96 09/20/11
Guinea-Bissau 4/11/97 09/30/13
Guyana 9/7/00 3/7/01
Haiti 9/24/96 12/1/05
Holy See 9/24/96 7/18/01
Honduras 9/25/96 10/30/03
Hungary* 9/25/96 7/13/99
Iceland 9/24/96

6/26/00

India*    
Indonesia* 9/24/96 2/6/12
Iran* 9/24/96  
Iraq 8/19/08 09/26/13
Ireland 9/24/96 7/15/99
Israel* 9/25/96  
Italy* 9/24/96 2/1/99
Jamaica 11/11/96 11/13/01
Japan* 9/24/96 7/8/97
Jordan 9/26/96 8/25/98
Kazakhstan 9/30/96 5/14/02
Kenya 11/14/96 11/30/00
Kiribati 9/7/00 9/7/00
Kuwait 9/24/96 5/6/03
Kyrgyzstan 10/8/96 10/02/03
Laos 7/30/97 10/5/00
Latvia 9/24/96 11/20/01
Lebanon 9/16/05 11/21/08
Lesotho 9/30/96 9/14/99
Liberia 10/1/96 8/17/09
Libya 11/13/01 1/6/04
Liechtenstein 9/27/96 9/21/04
Lithuania 10/7/96 2/7/00
Luxembourg 9/24/96 5/26/99
Macedonia 10/29/98 3/14/00
Madagascar 10/9/96 9/15/05
Malawi 10/9/96 11/21/08
Malaysia 7/23/98 1/17/08
Maldives 10/1/97 9/7/00
Mali 2/18/97 8/4/99
Malta 9/24/96 7/23/01
Marshall Islands 9/24/96 10/28/09
Mauritania 9/24/96 4/30/03
Maritius    
Mexico* 9/24/96 10/5/99
Micronesia 9/24/96 7/25/97
Moldova 9/24/97 1/16/07
Monaco 10/1/96 12/18/98
Mongolia 10/1/96 8/8/97
Montenegro 10/23/06 10/23/06
Morocco 9/24/96 4/17/00
Mozambique 9/26/96 11/4/08
Myanmar 11/25/96 9/21/16
Namibia 9/24/96 6/29/01
Nauru 9/8/00 11/12/01
Nepal 10/8/96  
Netherlands* 9/24/96 3/23/99
New Zealand 9/27/96 3/19/99
Nicaragua 9/24/96 12/5/00
Niger 10/3/96 9/9/02
Nigeria 9/8/00

9/27/01

Niue 4/9/12 3/5/14
North Korea*    
Norway* 9/24/96 7/15/99
Oman 9/23/99 6/13/03
Pakistan*    
Palau 8/12/03 8/1/07
Panama 9/24/96 3/23/99
Papua New Guinea 9/25/96  
Paraguay 9/25/96 10/4/01
Peru* 9/25/96 11/12/97
Philippines 9/24/96 2/23/01
Poland* 9/24/96 5/25/99
Portugal 9/24/96 6/26/00
Qatar 9/24/96 3/3/97
Romania* 9/24/96 10/5/99
Russia* 9/24/96 6/30/00
Rwanda 11/30/'2004 11/30/04
St. Kitts and Nevis 3/33/04 4/27/05
St. Lucia 10/4/96 4/5/01
St. Vincent and the Grenadines 7/2/09 9/23/09
Samoa 10/9/96 9/27/02
San Marino 10/7/96 3/12/02
Sao Tome and Principe 9/26/96  
Saudi Arabia    
Senegal 9/26/96 6/9/99
Serbia and Montenegro 6/8/01 5/19/04
Seychelles 9/24/96 4/13/04
Sierra Leone 9/8/00 9/17/01
Singapore 1/14/99 11/10/01
Slovakia* 9/30/96 3/3/98
Slovenia 9/24/96 8/31/99
Solomon Islands 10/3/96  
Somalia    
South Africa* 9/24/96 3/30/99
South Korea* 9/24/96 9/24/99
South Sudan    
Spain* 9/24/96 7/31/98
Sri Lanka 10/24/96  
Sudan 6/10/04 6/10/04
Suriname 1/14/97 2/7/06
Swaziland 9/24/96 9/21/16
Sweden* 9/24/96 12/2/98
Switzerland* 9/24/96 10/1/99
Syria    
Tajikistan 10/7/96 6/10/98
Tarzania 9/30/04 9/30/04
Thailand 11/12/96 9/25/18
Timor-Leste 9/26/08  
Togo 10/2/96 7/2/04
Tonga    
Trinidad and Tobago 10/8/09 5/26/10
Tunisia 10/16/96 9/23/04
Turkey* 9/24/96 2/16/00
Turkmenistan 9/24/96 2/20/98
Tuvalu 9/25/18  
Uganda 11/7/96 3/14/01
Ukraine* 9/27/96 2/23/01
United Arab Emirates 9/25/96 9/18/00
United Kingdom* 9/24/96 4/6/98
United States* 9/24/96  
Uruguay 9/24/96 9/21/01
Uzbekistan 10/3/96 5/29/97
Vanuatu 9/24/96 9/16/05
Venezuela 10/3/96 5/13/02
Viet Nam* 9/24/96 3/10/06
Yemen 9/30/96  
Zambia 12/3/96 2/23/06
Zimbabwe 10/13/99 2/13/19

Nuclear Testing

Country Resources:

Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty at a Glance

February 2019

 

Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107

The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) prohibits “any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion” anywhere in the world. The treaty was opened for signature in September 1996, and has been signed by 184 nations and ratified by 168. The treaty cannot enter into force until it is ratified by 44 specific nations, eight of which have yet to do so: China, India, Pakistan, North Korea, Israel, Iran, Egypt, and the United States. The U.S. Senate voted against CTBT ratification in 1999, and though in 2009 President Barack Obama announced his intention to seek Senate reconsideration of the treaty, he did not pursue the initative, though the United States did see through UN Security Council Resolution 2310, which was the first UN Security Council resolution to support the CTBT.

The 2018 Trump administration Nuclear Posture Reviews notes, "Although the United States will not seek ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, it will continue to support the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization Preparatory Committee as well as the International Monitoring System [IMS] and the International Data Center [IDC]. The United States will not resume nuclear explosive testing unless necessary to ensure the safety and effectiveness of the U.S. nuclear arsenal, and calls on all states possessing nuclear weapons to declare or maintain a moratorium on nuclear testing."

In order to verify compliance with its provisions, the treaty establishes a global network of monitoring facilities and allows for on-site inspections of suspicious events. The overall accord contains a preamble, 17 treaty articles, two treaty annexes, and a protocol with two annexes detailing verification procedures.

For more on the CTBT text itself, see below.  For more on issues related to the treaty, see Now More Than Ever: The Case for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

Preamble

The preamble, which lists disarmament principals and objectives, sets the overall political context of the treaty. In particular, it stresses the need for the continued reduction of nuclear weapons worldwide with the ultimate goal of their elimination. Also of significance, the preamble recognizes that a CTBT will constitute an effective measure of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation by “constraining the development and qualitative improvement of nuclear weapons and ending the development of advanced new types of nuclear weapons.” It further recognizes that a test ban will constitute “a meaningful step in the realization of a systematic process to achieve nuclear disarmament.”

Scope

Article I establishes that all states parties are prohibited from conducting “any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion.” On the basis of the negotiating record, this includes all nuclear explosions, in accordance with President Bill Clinton’s August 1995 “zero yield” proposal.

Implementing Organization

Article II establishes the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), which ensures treaty implementation and provides states-parties with a forum for consultation and cooperation. The organization consists of a Conference of the States Parties, an Executive Council and a Technical Secretariat. The organization, which is located in Vienna, is structurally independent from, but operating in collaboration with, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The Conference of the States Parties is the overall governing body of the organization. It handles treaty-related policy issues and oversees the treaty’s implementation, including the activities of the Executive Council and the Technical Secretariat. The conference meets once a year, unless otherwise decided.

The Executive Council, which meets regularly and acts as the treaty’s principal decision-making body, consists of 51 members. In order to distribute membership evenly throughout the world, the Executive Council comprises 10 states-parties from Africa; seven from Eastern Europe; nine from Latin America and the Caribbean; seven from the Middle East and South Asia; ten from North America and Western Europe; and eight from Southeast Asia, the Pacific and the Far East. The states in each of these geographical regions are listed in Annex 1 to the treaty.

The members of the council are elected by the conference. In order to ensure that those countries with a vested interest in a comprehensive test ban are adequately represented in the council, at least one-third of the seats allotted to each region will be filled by states-parties on the basis of their nuclear capabilities applicable to the treaty, such as the number of monitoring facilities they contribute to the International Monitoring System (IMS). One seat allocated to each region will be designated on an alphabetical basis and the remaining seats will be determined by rotation or elections. Thus, each state-party will eventually have the opportunity to serve on the council.

The Technical Secretariat is the primary body responsible for implementing the treaty’s verification provisions. In this capacity, it supervises the operation of the IMS and receives, processes, analyzes and reports on the system’s data. It also manages the International Data Center (IDC) and performs procedural tasks related to conducting on-site inspections. Until the treaty enters into force, these functions are being handled by the Provisional Technical Secretariat.

Article III requires each state-party, in accordance with its constitutional process, to take any necessary measures to implement its treaty obligations.

Verification and Compliance

Article IV and the verification protocol establish the treaty’s verification regime, which consists of four basic elements: the IMS, consultation and clarification, on-site inspections, and confidence-building measures. The verification regime will not be completely operational until the treaty enters into force. For instance, on-site inspections cannot be authorized until the treaty formally comes into effect.

The purpose of the IMS is to detect nuclear explosions, which are prohibited under Article I. The monitoring system comprises a network of 50 primary and 120 auxiliary seismological monitoring stations designed to detect seismic activity and distinguish between natural events, such as earthquakes, and nuclear explosions. In addition, the system incorporates 80 radionuclide stations and 16 radionuclide laboratories that seek to identify radioactivity released during a nuclear explosion. The IMS also includes 60 infrasound (acoustic) and 11 hydroacoustic stations designed to pick up the sound of a nuclear explosion conducted in the atmosphere or underwater, respectively. The host state and the location of each facility is listed in Annex 1 to the protocol. There will be a total of 337 IMS certified facilities.

Information collected by the IMS is transmitted to the IDC—an essential part of the Technical Secretariat responsible for data storage and processing. Because the IMS generates an enormous amount of raw data, the IDC will regularly provide states-parties with a number of services designed to help them monitor compliance with the treaty’s provisions. In this regard, the data center produces integrated lists of all signals picked up by the IMS, as well as standard event lists and bulletins. In accordance with the parameters outlined in Annex 2 to the protocol, the center also generates standard event bulletins that screen out those events that appear to be of a non-nuclear nature. However, notwithstanding this analysis role, the IDC must make both the raw and processed information available to all states-parties.

The consultation and clarification component of the verification regime encourages states-parties to attempt to resolve, either among themselves or through the organization, possible instances of non-compliance before requesting an on-site inspection. A state-party must provide clarification of an ambiguous event within 48 hours of receiving such a request from another state-party or the Executive Council.

Each state-party has the right to request an on-site inspection in the territory of the party in question. The inspection request must be based on information collected by the IMS; data obtained through national technical means (NTM) of verification, such as satellites, in a manner consistent with international law; or a combination of IMS and NTM information. The request must contain the approximate geographical coordinates and the estimated depth of the ambiguous event, the proposed boundaries of the area to be inspected (not to exceed 1,000 square kilometers), the state-party or parties to be inspected, the probable environment and estimated time of event, all evidence upon which the request is based, the identity of the proposed observer (if available) and the results of the consultation and clarification process (if any).

The Executive Council would make a decision on the on-site inspection request within 96 hours of its receipt from the requesting state-party. The inspection would be authorized to proceed if it has been approved by at least 30 of the council’s 51-members, the so-called “green light” procedure. An inspection team would arrive at the point of entry within six days of the council’s receipt of the inspection request. During the course of the inspection, the inspection team may submit a proposal to extend the inspection to begin drilling, which must be approved by 26 council members. The duration of the inspection must not exceed 60 days, but may be extended by a maximum of 70 additional days (subject to council approval) if the inspection team determines that more time is needed to fulfill its mandate.

If the Executive Council rejects an on-site inspection request (or terminates an inspection already underway) because it is of a frivolous or abusive nature, the council may impose punitive measures on the requesting state-party. In this regard, it may require the requesting state-party to provide financial compensation for preparations made by the Technical Secretariat and may suspend the party’s right to request an inspection and serve on the council for an unspecified period of time.

The verification regime also incorporates confidence-building measures intended to promote treaty compliance. In order to reduce the likelihood that verification data may be misconstrued, each state-party voluntarily provides the Technical Secretariat with notification of any chemical explosion involving a magnitude of 300 tons or more of TNT-equivalent on its territory. Each state-party may also assist the Technical Secretariat in the calibration of IMS stations.

In order to ensure compliance with the treaty’s provisions, Article V empowers the conference to revoke a state-party’s rights under the treaty, recommend to the states-parties punitive measures such as sanctions or bring the case to the attention of the United Nations. Article VI describes the mechanism by which disputes pertaining to the application or interpretation of the treaty may be settled.

Amendment Process

Under Article VII, each state-party has the right to propose amendments to the treaty after its entry into force. Any proposed amendment requires the approval of a simple majority of states-parties at an amendment conference with no party casting a negative vote.

Peaceful Nuclear Explosions

Under Article VIII, a conference will be held 10 years after the treaty’s entry into force to review the implementation of its provisions, including the preamble. At this review conference, any state-party may request that the issue of so-called “peaceful nuclear explosions” (PNEs) be put on the agenda. However, the presumption is that PNEs remain prohibited unless certain virtually insurmountable obstacles are overcome. First, the review conference must decide without objection that PNEs may be permitted, then an amendment to the treaty must also be approved without objection at a separate amendment conference, as is explained above. The amendment must also demonstrate that no military benefits would result from such explosions. This double hurdle makes it extremely unlikely that peaceful nuclear explosions would ever be permitted under the treaty.

Duration and Withdrawal

Under Article IX, the treaty has an unlimited duration. In addition, each state-party has the right to withdraw from the treaty if it decides, “extraordinary events related to the subject matter of this Treaty have jeopardized its supreme interests.” Notice of intent to withdraw must be given at least six months in advance.

Miscellaneous Provisions

Article X specifies that the treaty’s annexes, protocol and annexes to the protocol are a formal part of the treaty. Article XI declares that the treaty is open to all states for signature prior to its entry into force. Article XII maintains that each signatory state will ratify the treaty according to its own constitutional procedures. Under Article XIII, any state that has not signed the treaty prior to its entry into force may accede to it any time thereafter.

Entry into Force

Under Article XIV, the treaty will not enter into force until it has been signed and ratified by 44 states listed by name in Annex 2. These states include the five original nuclear weapon states—United States, Russia, Britain, France and China—as well as India, Israel, North Korea, and Pakistan. (Actual entry into force would occur 180 days after all 44 states deposit their instruments of ratification with the UN Secretary General.) The 44 states, all of which are participating members of the recently expanded Conference on Disarmament, possess nuclear power and research reactors as determined by the IAEA.

Until entry into force, conferences may be held for those states that have already deposited their instruments of ratification to “decide by consensus what measures consistent with international law may be undertaken to accelerate the ratification process.” Since 1999, the Conference Facilitating Entry Into Force of the CTBT has been convened every other year.

Other Provisions

Article XV stipulates that the treaty’s provisions will not be subject to reservations. Article XVI establishes the UN Secretary General as the depositary of the treaty. Under Article XVII, the treaty will be authentic in six languages.

Nuclear Testing

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty at a Glance

History of the INF Treaty between the United States and Russia and details on potential violations by Russia

Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107; Kingston Reif, Director for Disarmament and Threat Reduction Policy, (202) 463-8270 x104

The 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty required the United States and the Soviet Union to eliminate and permanently forswear all of their nuclear and conventional ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges of 500 to 5,500 kilometers. The treaty marked the first time the superpowers had agreed to reduce their nuclear arsenals, eliminate an entire category of nuclear weapons, and employ extensive on-site inspections for verification. As a result of the INF Treaty, the United States and the Soviet Union destroyed a total of 2,692 short-, medium-, and intermediate-range missiles by the treaty's implementation deadline of June 1, 1991.

The United States first alleged in its July 2014 Compliance Report that Russia was in violation of its INF Treaty obligations “not to possess, produce, or flight-test” a ground-launched cruise missile having a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometers or “to possess or produce launchers of such missiles.” Subsequent State Department assessments in 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 repeated these allegations. In March 2017, a top U.S. official confirmed press reports that Russia had begun deploying the noncompliant missile. Russia has denied that it is in violation of the agreement and has accused the United States of being in noncompliance.

On Dec. 8, 2017, the Trump administration released an integrated strategy to counter alleged Russian violations of the treaty, including the commencement of research and development on a conventional, road-mobile, intermediate-range missile system. On Oct. 20, 2018, President Donald Trump announced his intention to “terminate” the INF Treaty, citing Russian noncompliance and concerns about China’s intermediate-range missile arsenal. On Dec. 4, 2018, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States found Russia in “material breach” of the treaty and would suspend its treaty obligations in 60 days if Russia did not return to compliance in that time. On Feb. 2, the Trump administration declared a suspension of U.S. obligations under the INF Treaty and formally announced its intention to withdraw from the treaty in six months. Shortly thereafter, Russian President Vladimir Putin also announced that Russia will be officially suspending its treaty obligations as well. 

On Aug. 2, 2019, the United States formally withdrew from the INF Treaty.

Early History

U.S. calls for the control of intermediate-range missiles emerged as a result of the Soviet Union's domestic deployment of SS-20 intermediate-range missiles in the mid-1970s. The SS-20 qualitatively improved Soviet nuclear forces in the European theater by providing a longer-range, multiple-warhead alternative to aging Soviet SS-4 and SS-5 single-warhead missiles. In 1979, NATO ministers responded to the new Soviet missile deployment with what became known as the "dual-track" strategy: a simultaneous push for arms control negotiations with the deployment of intermediate-range, nuclear-armed U.S. missiles (ground-launched cruise missiles and the Pershing II) in Europe to offset the SS-20. Negotiations, however, faltered repeatedly while U.S. missile deployments continued in the early 1980s. The INF Treaty prohibited all U.S. and Soviet missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 kilometers. The official figures above show missiles deployed November 1, 1987, shortly before the INF Treaty was signed. The treaty also required destruction of 430 U.S. missiles and 979 Soviet missiles which were in storage or otherwise not deployed. The treaty prevented the planned deployment of an additional 208 GLCMs in the Netherlands, Britain, Belgium, Germany, and Italy. The Pershing IAs, under joint U.S.-German control, were not formally covered by the INF Treaty but were also to be eliminated by U.S. and West German agreement.

INF Treaty negotiations began to show progress once Mikhail Gorbachev became the Soviet general-secretary in March 1985. In the fall of the same year, the Soviet Union put forward a plan to establish a balance between the number of SS-20 warheads and the growing number of allied intermediate-range missile warheads in Europe. The United States expressed interest in the Soviet proposal, and the scope of the negotiations expanded in 1986 to include all U.S. and Soviet intermediate-range missiles around the world. Using the momentum from these talks, President Ronald Reagan and Gorbachev began to move toward a comprehensive intermediate-range missile elimination agreement. Their efforts culminated in the signing of the INF Treaty on Dec. 8, 1987, and the treaty entered into force on June 1, 1988.

The intermediate-range missile ban originally applied only to U.S. and Soviet forces, but the treaty's membership expanded in 1991 to include the following successor states of the former Soviet Union: Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine, which had inspectable facilities on their territories at the time of the Soviet Union’s dissolution. Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan also possessed INF Treaty-range facilities (SS-23 operating bases) but forgo treaty meetings with the consent of the other states-parties.

Although active states-parties to the treaty total just five countries, several European countries have destroyed INF Treaty-range missiles since the end of the Cold War. Germany, Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic destroyed their intermediate-range missiles in the 1990s, and Slovakia dismantled all of its remaining intermediate-range missiles in October 2000 after extensive U.S. prodding. On May 31, 2002, the last possessor of intermediate-range missiles in Eastern Europe, Bulgaria, signed an agreement with the United States to destroy all of its INF Treaty-relevant missiles. Bulgaria completed the destruction five months later with U.S. funding.

States-parties' rights to conduct on-site inspections under the treaty ended on May 31, 2001, but the use of surveillance satellites for data collection continues. The INF Treaty established the Special Verification Commission (SVC) to act as an implementing body for the treaty, resolving questions of compliance and agreeing on measures to "improve [the treaty's] viability and effectiveness." Because the INF Treaty is of unlimited duration, states-parties could convene the SVC at any time.

Elimination Protocol

The INF Treaty's protocol on missile elimination named the specific types of ground-launched missiles to be destroyed and the acceptable means of doing so. Under the treaty, the United States committed to eliminate its Pershing II, Pershing IA, and Pershing IB ballistic missiles and BGM-109G cruise missiles. The Soviet Union had to destroy its SS-20, SS-4, SS-5, SS-12, and SS-23 ballistic missiles and SSC-X-4 cruise missiles. In addition, both parties were obliged to destroy all INF Treaty-related training missiles, rocket stages, launch canisters, and launchers. Most missiles were eliminated either by exploding them while they were unarmed and burning their stages or by cutting the missiles in half and severing their wings and tail sections.

Inspection and Verification Protocols

The INF Treaty's inspection protocol required states-parties to inspect and inventory each other's intermediate-range nuclear forces 30 to 90 days after the treaty's entry into force. Referred to as "baseline inspections," these exchanges laid the groundwork for future missile elimination by providing information on the size and location of U.S. and Soviet forces. Treaty provisions also allowed signatories to conduct up to 20 short-notice inspections per year at designated sites during the first three years of treaty implementation and to monitor specified missile-production facilities to guarantee that no new missiles were being produced.

The INF Treaty's verification protocol certified reductions through a combination of national technical means (i.e., satellite observation) and on-site inspections—a process by which each party could send observers to monitor the other's elimination efforts as they occurred. The protocol explicitly banned interference with photo-reconnaissance satellites, and states-parties were forbidden from concealing their missiles to impede verification activities. Both states-parties could carry out on-site inspections at each other's facilities in the United States and Soviet Union and at specified bases in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, West Germany, and Czechoslovakia.

The INF Treaty’s Slow Demise

Since the mid-2000s, Russia has raised the possibility of withdrawing from the INF Treaty. Moscow contends that the treaty unfairly prevents it from possessing weapons that its neighbors, such as China, are developing and fielding. Russia also has suggested that the proposed U.S. deployment of strategic anti-ballistic missile systems in Europe might trigger a Russian withdrawal from the accord, presumably so Moscow can deploy missiles targeting any future U.S. anti-missile sites. Still, the United States and Russia issued an Oct. 25, 2007, statement at the United Nations General Assembly reaffirming their “support” for the treaty and calling on all other states to join them in renouncing the missiles banned by the treaty.

Reports began to emerge in 2013 and 2014 that the United States had concerns about Russia's compliance with the INF Treaty. In July 2014, the U.S. State Department found Russia to be in violation of the agreement by producing and testing an illegal ground-launched cruise missile. Russia responded in August refuting the claim. Throughout 2015 and most of 2016, U.S. Defense and State Department officials had publicly expressed skepticism that the Russian cruise missiles at issue had been deployed. But an Oct. 19, 2016, report in The New York Times cited anonymous U.S. officials who were concerned that Russia was producing more missiles than needed solely for flight testing, which increased fears that Moscow was on the verge of deploying the missile. By Feb. 14, 2017, The New York Times cited U.S. officials declaring that Russia had deployed an operational unit of the treaty-noncompliant cruise missile now known as the SSC-8. On March 8, 2017, General Paul Selva, the vice chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, confirmed press reports that Russia had deployed a ground-launched cruise missile that “violates the spirit and intent” of the INF Treaty.

The State Department’s 2018 annual assessment of Russian compliance with key arms control agreements alleged Russian noncompliance with the INF Treaty and listed details on the steps Washington has taken to resolve the dispute, including convening a session of the SVC and providing Moscow with further information on the violation.

The report says the missile in dispute is distinct from two other Russian missile systems, the R-500/SSC-7 Iskander GLCM and the RS-26 ballistic missile. The R-500 has a Russian-declared range below the 500-kilometer INF Treaty cutoff, and Russia identifies the RS-26 as an intercontinental ballistic missile treated in accordance with the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). The report also appears to suggest that the launcher for the allegedly noncompliant missile is different from the launcher for the Iskander. In late 2017, the United States for the first time revealed both the U.S. name for the missile of concern, the SSC-8, and the apparent Russian designation, the 9M729.

Russia denies that it breached the agreement and has raised its own concerns about Washington’s compliance. Moscow charges that the United States is placing a missile defense launch system in Europe that can also be used to fire cruise missiles, using targets for missile defense tests with similar characteristics to INF Treaty-prohibited intermediate-range missiles, and making armed drones that are equivalent to ground-launched cruise missiles.

Congress for the past several years has urged a more assertive military and economic response to Russia’s violation. The fiscal year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) authorized funds for the Defense Department to develop a conventional, road-mobile, ground-launched cruise missile that, if tested, would violate the treaty. The fiscal year 2019 NDAA also included provisions on the treaty. Section 1243 stated that no later than Jan. 15, 2019, the president would submit to Congress a determination on whether Russia is “in material breach” of its INF Treaty obligations and whether the “prohibitions set forth in Article VI of the INF Treaty remain binding on the United States.” Section 1244 expressed the sense of Congress that in light of Russia’s violation of the treaty, that the United States is “legally entitled to suspend the operation of the INF Treaty in whole or in part” as long as Russia is in material breach. For fiscal year 2020, the Defense Department requested nearly $100 million to develop three new missile systems that exceed the range limits of the treaty.

On Dec. 8, 2017 the Trump administration announced a strategy to respond to alleged Russian violations, which comprised of three elements: diplomacy, including through the Special Verification Commission, research and development on a new conventional ground-launched cruise missile, and punitive economic measures against companies believed to be involved in the development of the missile.

However, President Trump announced Oct. 20 that he would “terminate” the INF Treaty in response to the long-running dispute over Russian noncompliance with the agreement, as well as citing concerns about China’s unconstrained arsenal of INF Treaty-range missiles. Trump’s announcement seemed to take NATO allies by surprise, with many expressing concern about the president's plan. 

After repeatedly denying the existence of the 9M729 cruise missile, Russia has since acknowledged the missile but denies that the missile has been tested or is able to fly at an INF Treaty-range.

On Nov. 30, U.S. Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats provided further details on the Russian treaty violation. Coats revealed that the United States believes Russia cheated by conducting legally allowable tests of the 9M729, such as testing the missile at over 500 km from a fixed launcher (allowed if the missile is to be deployed by air or sea), as well as testing the same missile from a mobile launcher at a range under 500 km. Coats noted that “by putting the two types of tests together,” Russia was able to develop an intermediate-range missile that could be launched from a “ground-mobile platform” in violation of the treaty.

On Dec. 4, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States found Russia in “material breach” of the treaty and would suspend its treaty obligations in 60 days if Russia did not return to compliance in that time. Though NATO allies in a Dec. 4 statement expressed for the first time the conclusion that Russia had violated the INF Treaty, the statement notably did not comment on Pompeo's ultimatum.

Russian President Vladimir Putin responded Dec. 5 by noting that Russia would respond “accordingly” to U.S. withdrawal from the treaty, and the chief of staff of the Russian military General Valery Gerasimov noted that U.S. missile sites on allied territory could become “targets of subsequent military exchanges." On Dec. 14, Reuters reported that Russian foreign ministry official Vladimir Yermakov was cited by RIA news agency as saying that Russia was ready to discuss mutual inspections with the United States in order to salvage the treaty. The United States and Russia met three more times after this, first in January in Geneva, on the sidelines of a P5 meeting in Beijing, and again in Geneva in July—all times to no new result.

On Feb. 2, President Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo announced that the United States suspended its obligations under the INF Treaty and will withdraw from the treaty in six months if Russia did not return to compliance. Shortly thereafter, Russian President Vladimir Putin also announced that Russia will be officially suspending its treaty obligations. 

Six months later, on Aug. 2, the United States formally withdrew from the INF Treaty. In a statement, Secretary Pompeo said, “With the full support of our NATO Allies, the United States has determined Russia to be in material breach of the treaty, and has subsequently suspended our obligations under the treaty.” He declared that “Russia is solely responsible for the treaty’s demise.” A day later, U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said that he was in favor of deploying conventional ground-launched, intermediate-range missiles in Asia “sooner rather than later.” 

Strategic Arms Control and Policy

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U.S.-Russian Nuclear Arms Control Agreements at a Glance

August 2019

Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107; Kingston ReifDirector for Disarmament and Threat Reduction Policy, (202) 463-8270 x104

Over the past four decades, American and Soviet/Russian leaders have used a progression of bilateral agreements and other measures to limit and reduce their substantial nuclear warhead and strategic missile and bomber arsenals. The following is a brief summary.

Strategic Nuclear Arms Control Agreements

SALT I

Begun in November 1969, by May 1972, the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) had produced both the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, which limited strategic missile defenses to 200 (later 100) interceptors each, and the Interim Agreement, an executive agreement that capped U.S. and Soviet intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) and submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) forces. Under the Interim Agreement, both sides pledged not to construct new ICBM silos, not to increase the size of existing ICBM silos “significantly,” and capped the number of SLBM launch tubes and SLBM-carrying submarines. The agreement ignored strategic bombers and did not address warhead numbers, leaving both sides free to enlarge their forces by deploying multiple warheads (MIRVs) onto their ICBMs and SLBMs and increasing their bomber-based forces. The agreement limited the United States to 1,054 ICBM silos and 656 SLBM launch tubes. The Soviet Union was limited to 1,607 ICBM silos and 740 SLBM launch tubes. In June 2002, the United States unilaterally withdrew from the ABM treaty.

SALT II

In November 1972, Washington and Moscow agreed to pursue a follow-on treaty to SALT I. SALT II, signed in June 1979, limited U.S. and Soviet ICBM, SLBM, and strategic bomber-based nuclear forces to 2,250 delivery vehicles (defined as an ICBM silo, a SLBM launch tube, or a heavy bomber) and placed a variety of other restrictions on deployed strategic nuclear forces. The agreement would have required the Soviets to reduce their forces by roughly 270 delivery vehicles, but U.S. forces were below the limits and could actually have been increased. However, President Jimmy Carter asked the Senate not to consider SALT II for its advice and consent after the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan in December 1979, and the treaty was not taken up again. Both Washington and Moscow subsequently pledged to adhere to the agreement’s terms despite its failure to enter into force. However, on May 26, 1986, President Ronald Reagan said that future decisions on strategic nuclear forces would be based on the threat posed by Soviet forces and not on "a flawed SALT II Treaty.”

START I

The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), first proposed in the early 1980s by President Ronald Reagan and finally signed in July 1991, required the United States and the Soviet Union to reduce their deployed strategic arsenals to 1,600 delivery vehicles, carrying no more than 6,000 warheads as counted using the agreement’s rules. The agreement required the destruction of excess delivery vehicles which was verified using an intrusive verification regime that involved on-site inspections, the regular exchange of information (including telemetry), and the use of national technical means (i.e., satellites). The agreement’s entry into force was delayed for several years because of the collapse of the Soviet Union and ensuing efforts to denuclearize Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus by returning their nuclear weapons to Russia and making them parties to the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) and START I agreements. START I reductions were completed in December 2001, and the treaty expired on Dec. 5, 2009.

START II

In June 1992, Presidents George H. W. Bush and Boris Yeltsin agreed to pursue a follow-on accord to START I. START II, signed in January 1993, called for reducing deployed strategic arsenals to 3,000-3,500 warheads and banned the deployment of destabilizing multiple-warhead land-based missiles. START II would have counted warheads in roughly the same fashion as START I and, also like its predecessor, would have required the destruction of delivery vehicles but not warheads. The agreement's original implementation deadline was January 2003, ten years after signature, but a 1997 protocol moved this deadline to December 2007 because of the extended delay in ratification. Both the Senate and the Duma approved START II, but the treaty did not take effect because the Senate did not ratify the 1997 protocol and several ABM Treaty amendments, whose passage the Duma established as a condition for START II’s entry into force. START II was effectively shelved as a result of the 2002 U.S. withdrawal from the ABM treaty.

START III Framework

In March 1997, Presidents Bill Clinton and Boris Yeltsin agreed to a framework for START III negotiations that included a reduction in deployed strategic warheads to 2,000-2,500. Significantly, in addition to requiring the destruction of delivery vehicles, START III negotiations were to address “the destruction of strategic nuclear warheads…to promote the irreversibility of deep reductions including prevention of a rapid increase in the number of warheads.” Negotiations were supposed to begin after START II entered into force, which never happened.

SORT (Moscow Treaty)

On May 24, 2002, Presidents George W. Bush and Vladimir Putin signed the Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT or Moscow Treaty) under which the United States and Russia reduced their strategic arsenals to 1,700-2,200 warheads each. The warhead limit took effect and expired on the same day, Dec. 31, 2012. Although the two sides did not agree on specific counting rules, the Bush administration asserted that the United States would reduce only warheads deployed on strategic delivery vehicles in active service (i.e., “operationally deployed” warheads) and would not count warheads removed from service and placed in storage or warheads on delivery vehicles undergoing overhaul or repair. The agreement’s limits are similar to those envisioned for START III, but the treaty did not require the destruction of delivery vehicles, as START I and II did, or the destruction of warheads, as had been envisioned for START III. The treaty was approved by the Senate and Duma and entered into force on June 1, 2003. SORT was replaced by New START on Feb. 5, 2011.

New START

On April 8, 2010, the United States and Russia signed New START, a legally binding, verifiable agreement that limits each side to 1,550 strategic nuclear warheads deployed on 700 strategic delivery systems (ICBMs, SLBMs and heavy bombers) and limits deployed and nondeployed launchers to 800. The treaty-accountable warhead limit is 30 percent lower than the 2,200 upper limit of SORT, and the delivery vehicle limit is 50 percent lower than the 1,600 allowed in START I. The treaty has a verification regime that combines elements of START I with new elements tailored to New START. Measures under the treaty include on-site inspections and exhibitions, data exchanges and notifications related to strategic offensive arms and facilities covered by the treaty, and provisions to facilitate the use of national technical means for treaty monitoring. The treaty also provides for the continued exchange of telemetry (missile flight-test data on up to five tests per year) and does not meaningfully limit missile defenses or long-range conventional strike capabilities. The U.S. Senate approved New START on Dec. 22, 2010. The approval process of the Russian parliament (passage by both the State Duma and Federation Council) was completed Jan. 26, 2011. The treaty entered into force on Feb. 5, 2011 and will expire in 2021, though both parties may agree to extend the treaty for a period of up to five years. Both parties met the treaty’s central limits by the Feb. 5, 2018 deadline for implementation.

Strategic Nuclear Arms Control Agreements

Strategic Nuclear Arms Control Agreements
  SALT  I SALT II INF Treaty START I START II START III SORT

New START

Status Expired Never Entered Into Force Terminated Expired Never Entered Into Force Never Negotiated Replaced by New START In Force
Deployed Warhead Limit N/A N/A N/A 6,000 3,000-3,500 2,000-2,500 1,700-2,200 1,550
Deployed Delivery Vehicle Limit US: 1,710 ICBMs & SLBMs
USSR: 2,347
2,250 Prohibits ground-based missiles of 500-5,500 km range 1,600 N/A N/A N/A 700
Date Signed May 26, 1972 June 18, 1979 Dec. 8, 1987 July 31, 1991 Jan. 3, 1993 N/A May 24, 2002 April 8, 2010
Date Ratifed, U.S. Aug. 3, 1972 N/A May 28, 1988 Oct. 1, 1992 Jan. 26, 1996 N/A March 6, 2003 Dec. 22, 2010
Ratification Vote, U.S. 88-2 N/A 93-6 93-6 87-4 N/A 95-0 71-26
Date Entered Into Force Oct. 3, 1972 N/A June 1, 1988 Dec. 5, 1994 N/A N/A June 1, 2003 Feb. 5, 2011
Implementation Deadline N/A N/A June 1, 1991 Dec. 5, 2001 N/A N/A N/A Feb. 5, 2018
Expiration Date Oct. 3, 1977 N/A Aug. 2, 2019 Dec. 5, 2009 N/A N/A Feb. 5, 2011 Feb. 5, 2021*

*New START allows for the option to extend the treaty beyond 2021 for a period of up to five years.

Nonstrategic Nuclear Arms Control Measures

Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty

Signed Dec. 8, 1987, the INF Treaty required the United States and the Soviet Union to verifiably eliminate all ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 kilometers. Distinguished by its unprecedented, intrusive inspection regime, including on-site inspections, the INF Treaty laid the groundwork for verification of the subsequent START I. The INF Treaty entered into force June 1, 1988, and the two sides completed their reductions by June 1, 1991, destroying a total of 2,692 missiles. The agreement was multilateralized after the breakup of the Soviet Union, and current active participants in the agreement include the United States, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine. Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are also parties to the agreement but do not participate in treaty meetings or on-site inspections. The ban on intermediate-range missiles is of unlimited duration.

Both the United States and Russia have raised concerns about the other side’s compliance with the INF Treaty. The United States first publicly charged Russia in 2014 with developing and testing a ground-launched cruise missile—the 9M729 missile—with a range that exceeds the INF Treaty limits.

Russia denies that it breached the agreement and has raised its own concerns about Washington’s compliance. Moscow has charged that the United States is placing a missile defense launch system in Europe that could also be used to fire cruise missiles, using targets for missile defense tests with similar characteristics to INF Treaty-prohibited intermediate-range missiles, and is making armed drones that are equivalent to ground-launched cruise missiles. On Oct. 20, 2018 President Donald Trump announced his intention to “terminate” the agreement citing Russian noncompliance and concerns about China’s missiles, and on Dec. 4, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declared Russia in “material breach” of the treaty. The Trump administration provided official notice to the other treaty states-parties on Feb. 2 that it would both suspend its obligations to the treaty and withdraw from the agreement in six months—per the treaty's terms—and "terminate" the agreement unless Russia returned to compliance by eliminating its ground-launched 9M729 missiles. 

On Aug. 2, 2019, the United States formally withdrew from the INF Treaty.

Presidential Nuclear Initiatives 

On Sept. 27, 1991, President George H. W. Bush announced that the United States would remove almost all U.S. tactical (nonstrategic) nuclear forces from deployment so that Russia could undertake similar actions, reducing the risk of nuclear proliferation as the Soviet Union dissolved. Specifically, Bush said the United States would eliminate all its nuclear artillery shells and short-range nuclear ballistic missile warheads and remove all nonstrategic nuclear warheads from surface ships, attack submarines, and land-based naval aircraft. Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev reciprocated on Oct. 5, pledging to eliminate all nuclear artillery munitions, nuclear warheads for tactical missiles, and nuclear landmines. He also pledged to withdraw all Soviet tactical naval nuclear weapons from deployment. Under these initiatives, the United States and Russia reduced their deployed nonstrategic stockpiles by an estimated 5,000 and 13,000 warheads, respectively. However, significant questions remain about Russian implementation of its pledges, and there is considerable uncertainty about the current state of Russia’s tactical nuclear forces. The Defense Department estimates that Russia possesses roughly 2,000 non-strategic nuclear weapons and the numbers are expanding. The United States maintains several hundred nonstrategic B61 gravity bombs for delivery by short-range fighter aircraft. 

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The European Phased Adaptive Approach at a Glance

January 2019

Contact: Kingston Reif, Director for Disarmament and Threat Reduction Policy, (202) 463-8270 x104

On September 17, 2009, President Obama announced that the U.S. would pursue a “Phased Adaptive Approach” to missile defense in Europe. The new approach is centered on the Aegis missile defense system and is being deployed in three main phases from 2011 to perhaps 2020. A fourth phase to have been fielded after 2022 was cancelled in March 2013. [For more on this development, please see, "Pentagon Shifts Gears on Missile Defense"]

The European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) is the U.S. contribution to NATO’s missile defense system and is designed to protect Europe against short-, medium-, and intermediate-range ballistic missiles launched from Iran. The approach consists of sea- and land-based configurations of the Aegis missile defense system, the centerpiece of which is the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) interceptor. A new, more capable version of the SM-3 is being developed, and the system will be increasingly integrated with an evolving network of land and space-based sensors. According to the Obama administration, the plan uses technology that is both “proven” and “cost-effective,” and will be able to adapt as threats evolve.

The EPAA broke with the plans pursued by the Bush administration. The Bush plans had called for deployment of a ground-based missile defense system in Europe, similar to the system deployed in California and Alaska. This included bilateral agreements to station ground-based interceptors in Poland and a radar installation in the Czech Republic.

As part of the EPAA, Turkey is hosting a radar at Kürecik, Romania is hosting an Aegis Ashore site at Deveselu Air Base , Germany is hosting a command center at Ramstein Air Base, and Poland will host another Aegis Ashore site at the Redzikowo military base.

Phase 1, consisting of the radar in Turkey, command center in Germany, and deployed ballistic missile defense (BMD)-capable Aegis ship by the U.S. Navy, has been operational since 2012. In May 2016, NATO declared operational the Romania Aegis Ashore site as part of EPAA Phase 2. At NATO’s July 2016 Warsaw summit, NATO declared the Initial Operational Capability (IOC) of the NATO ballistic missile defense system and is progressing towards full operational capability. Phase 3 will see the deployment of the Poland Aegis Ashore system perhaps by FY2020 instead of the original 2018 target. The Missile Defense Agency says the completion of the Poland site has been delayed by at least a year due to contractor performance issues. 

The following chart provides an overview of the different EPAA phases. It contains information on the planned scheduling of the phases, the deployment platforms, missile upgrades and the sensors which will be integrated into the system. More has been disclosed about the earlier phases; some of the specifics of the later phases are still to be determined.

 

Phase 1, Deployed

Missile Platforms and Numbers

      • In March 2011, the USS Monterey was deployed to the Mediterranean Sea. This represented "the first sustained deployment of a ballistic missile defense-capable ship" in support of the European PAA.
      • In fiscal year (FY) 2012, 113 SM-3 Block IA and 16 SM-3 Block IB interceptors were delivered and 29 Aegis-equipped BMD ships deployed.
      • The SM-3 IA successfully intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile target in its most recent test on October 20, 2015.

        SM-3 Variant and Numbers

        • SM-3 Block IA interceptors have a velocity of 3 km/second and are designed to engage short- and medium-range ballistic missiles in the mid-course phase.
        • Block IA has a single-color seeker, a 21 inch-diameter booster, and is 13.5 inches in diameter along the rest of the interceptor.
        • Block IA costs between $9 and 10 million per unit.
        • Some SM-2 Block IVs (the SM-3 predecessor) will also be retained for use against missiles in the terminal phase.

        Sensors and Combat System

        • Initially, the system will use sea-based sensors mounted on the Aegis ships, as well as a forward-based mobile X-band radar on land. The first EPAA radar was deployed in Turkey in late 2011.
        • The mobile X-band radar is the AN/TPY-2 manufactured by Raytheon. The U.S. is planning to deploy a total of 18 AN/TPY-2 radars. So far, seven have been produced, and two are currently deployed in Israel and Japan.
        • In May 2018, the GAO reported a total of seven AN/TPY-2 radars are deployed to support regional defense. Four radars are deployed to Pacific Command (two for use in forward-based mode and two for use in terminal mode), two are deployed to European Command and one is deployed to Central Command.
        • The sensors and interceptors will be brought together under the Aegis combat system. This is a system capable of tracking 100 simultaneous targets. Phase 1 will primarily use Aegis version 3.6.1 software.
        • According to the Defense Science Board (2011), the current Aegis shipboard radar is inadequate to support the EPAA mission, and the future Navy ship-based Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) is needed.
        • U.S. and European BMD systems are integrated for battle management at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany.

         

         

        Phase 2, Operational as of May 2, 2016

        Missile Platforms and Numbers

            • Phase 2 includes interceptors on land in the first "Aegis-Ashore" deployment in Romania. Interceptors have also been mounted on an increasing number of Aegis BMD ships in support of global missions.
            • According to the FY2019 budget submission, by FY2019, the U.S. Navy plans to have 41 Aegis BMD ships, and 57 by FY2023.
            • The first "Aegis-Ashore" site in Romania is equipped with one land-based Aegis SPY-1 radar and 24 SM-3 missiles.
            • Phase 2 achieved a Technical Capability Declaration in 2015, meaning that the site transitioned from the construction to integration phase. In May 2016, NATO declared the Romania Aegis Ashore site operational. NATO declared the IOC of the system in July 2016. 

              SM-3 Variant and Numbers

              • Phase 2 included the SM-3 Block IB variant, also with a velocity of 3 km/sec. This interceptor differs from the Block IA in its "seeker" technology, consisting of a two color seeker, or "kill warhead," and improved optics.
              • The SM-3 Block IB missiles are placed in the MK-41 launcher.
              • According to the FY2017 budget submission, the inventory of SM-3 Block IB interceptors stood at 92 in 2016, with 128 planned for FY17. By FY21, the MDA is planning an inventory of 271 Block IB interceptors.
              • The Block IB is estimated to cost between $12 and 15 million per interceptor.

              Sensors and Combat Systems

              • In Phase 2, sensors were integrated with updated versions of the Aegis combat system. BMD ships carry versions 3.6.1, 4.0.1, and 5.0. 

               

              Phase 3, Planned Deployment Date: ~2020

              Missile Platforms and Numbers

                • Phase 3 will see the introduction of the second “Aegis-Ashore” site in Poland with another SPY-1 radar and 24 SM-3 missiles. This will supplement the deployments at sea and in Romania and will extend coverage over a greater percentage of Europe.

                SM-3 Variant and Numbers

                • Phase 3 will include the SM-3 Block IIA interceptor. This new variant will be faster than Block I (4.5 km/sec vs. 3 km/sec.), with a 21 inch diameter for the whole length of the missile allowing for more fuel and hence a more powerful motor. This will give the system an “enhanced” capability to address intermediate-range ballistic missiles and potentially a “limited” capability to address intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).
                  • The first intercept test of the new SM-3 IIA interceptor occurred in February 2017 and was successful. However, the second and third intercept tests of the missile in June 2017 and January 2018 failed to destroy their targets. There were two more tests before the end of 2018 on Oct. 26 and Dec.11, both successful, with the December test particularly notable for being the first successful intercept of an IRBM target and using the ability to "engage on remote" using a forward-based sensor. 
                  • Four Block IIAs are planned for delivery in FY2018, with an additional 27 planned for FY2021.

                Sensors and Combat Systems

                  • In Phase 3, the United States will deploy both the Airborne Infrared (ABIR) sensor platform, a system designed to track significantly larger numbers of incoming missiles, with the goal of being able to track “hundreds” of missiles simultaneously. 
                  • Aegis BMD ships are scheduled to be equipped with version 5.1 of the combat system software in this time-frame.
                  • Phase 3 of the EPAA is scheduled to include an “engage on remote” capability for Aegis interceptors to conduct operations based entirely on off-board radar information, thereby expanding the range of the Aegis systems. In this capability, the interceptor can be both launched and guided to intercept by sensors remote from the launching ship.

                     

                    Phase 4, Cancelled March 2013

                    Missile Platforms and Numbers

                      • The platforms supporting the SM-3 interceptors under Phase 4 would have remained the same as those deployed under Phase 3 – sea-based platforms and the “Aegis-Ashore” deployments in Romania and Poland.

                      SM-3 Variant and Numbers

                      • The SM-3 Block IIB; planned numbers unknown. Was planned to have an improved seeker and a higher performance booster, with a velocity of 5-5.5 km/sec. Was expected to marginally improve the Block IIA’s “limited” capability to counter ICBMs.
                      • According to the Defense Science Board (2011), the SM-3 IIB's planned mission to intercept targets prior to the deployment of multiple warheads or penetration aids – known as "early intercept" – requires "Herculean effort and is not realistically achievable, even under the most optimistic set of deployment, sensor capability, and missile technology assumptions.”
                      • The Block IIB was in the conceptual stage.

                       

                      Missile Defense

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                      Current U.S. Missile Defense Programs at a Glance

                      An overview of the current U.S. approach to national and regional missile defense, its costs, and sustainability.

                      For more information on the European system, see European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) at a Glance and for the Asia-Pacific Region, see U.S. and Allied Ballistic Missile Defenses in the Asia-Pacific Region.

                      Contact: Kingston Reif, director for disarmament and threat reduction policy, 202-463-8270 x104


                      Executive Summary

                      Two Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptors are launched during a successful intercept test. (Photo: US Missile Defense Agency Flickr)

                      According to Missile Defense Agency (MDA) estimates, Congress has appropriated over $200 billion for the agency’s programs between fiscal years 1985 and 2019. That total does not include spending by the military services on programs such as the Patriot system or the many additional tens of billions of dollars spent since work on anti-missile systems first began in the 1950s.

                      For nearly two decades, U.S. ballistic missile defense (BMD) policy has sought to protect the homeland against limited long-range missile strikes from states such as Iran and North Korea, but not major nuclear powers like Russia and China as that mission would pose significant technical, financial, and geopolitical challenges. The United States has also pursued programs to defend U.S. troops and facilities abroad, as well as some close allies, from attacks by ballistic missiles—and to a much lesser extent cruise missiles.

                      The overall U.S. missile defense effort enjoys strong bipartisan support in Congress. Additionally, many U.S. allies place a high value on missile defense cooperation with the United States.

                      However, the U.S. pursuit of effective missile defenses has been accompanied by intense debate about the technical capabilities of the system and realism of testing, the scope of the ballistic missile threat, the deterrence and assurance benefits of defenses, the cost-effectiveness of shooting down relatively inexpensive offensive missiles with expensive defensive ones, and the repercussions for U.S. strategic stability with Russia and China.

                      According to the Defense Department’s independent testing office, existing U.S. missile defenses have "demonstrated capability" to defend the U.S. homeland against a small number of intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) threats that employ "simple countermeasures." The testing office assesses that defenses to protect allies and U.S. troops deployed abroad possess only a “limited capability” to defend against small numbers of intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) and medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBMs). The capability of defenses against short-range ballistic missiles is labeled as “fair.” Apart from the point-defense Patriot system, no systems in the U.S. BMD arsenal have been used in combat.

                      Leaders of the U.S. missile defense enterprise have increasingly voiced concerns that the current U.S. approach to national and regional missile defense is unsustainable and that existing defenses must be augmented with emerging capabilities to reduce the cost of missile defense and keep pace with advancing adversary missile threats.

                      The Trump Administration

                      In May 2017, pursuant to direction from President Donald Trump and Congress, then Defense Secretary James Mattis formally announced the beginning of the department’s Ballistic Missile Defense Review, which is taking a wide-ranging look at missile defense policy and strategy. The review was finally released in February 2019, one year after its original completion target.

                      Broadly, the review proposes to expand the role and scope of U.S. missile defenses by focusing not only on ballistic missiles, but also other types of missile threats, such as regional cruise and hypersonic missiles. It also proposes placing greater emphasis on the importance of space and new technologies to intercept missiles during their boost phase when they are traveling at their slowest. The review also calls for integrating offensive attack operations more closely with missile defenses and to supplement the defense of the U.S. homeland with the Aegis Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA interceptor.

                      The review also re-affirmed previously announced plans by the Trump administration to arm unarmed aerial vehicles with lasers to zap long-range missiles during their boost phase, expand the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system from 44 to 64 interceptors by 2023 (though this plan has since been indefinitely delayed), focus on “left of launch” capabilities to destroy a missile threat before it launches, and field a space-sensor layer to provide birth-to-death tracking of ballistic missiles and hypersonic glide vehicles. The review also called for 11 follow-up studies, which are detailed in the below section, The 2019 Missile Defense Review To-Do List.

                      Since President Trump’s inauguration, the administration has vowed to expand national and regional missile defense systems of every kind, and Congress has supported these efforts. In fiscal year 2018, Congress approved $11.5 billion for the Missile Defense Agency, an increase of $3.6 billion, or 46 percent, from the Trump administration’s May 2017 initial budget request. The appropriation is the largest Congress has ever provided for the agency after adjusting for inflation. 

                      Congress approved another big increase for fiscal year 2019, approving $10.3 billion for the agency, an increase of $1.4 billion above the budget request of $9.9 billion.

                      Notably, the fiscal year 2020 request seeks $380 million over the next five years to develop and test by 2023 a prototype space-based laser weapon to destroy ICBMs during their boost and midcourse phases of flight.

                      For ballistic missile and missile defense basics, as well as the historical background of missile defense programs, please visit “Missiles and Missile Defense Systems at a Glance.”


                      Elements of the Current U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System

                      The following charts provides a brief look at some of the major missile defense programs maintained by the United States. It contains information on what type of ballistic missile each defense would be intended to counter and at which stage of the enemy missile’s flight an attempted intercept would take place. Also included are the Pentagon’s estimates on when each defense may have an initial, rudimentary capability, as well as when it could be fully operational. For basics about missiles, missile defense systems and their various components, or the general history of the U.S. missile defense system and recently cancelled programs, visit the “Missile Defense Systems at a Glance” fact sheet.

                      GROUND-BASED MIDCOURSE DEFENSE

                      Program & Key Elements

                      • Key element: Ground-based missile interceptor (GBI) consisting of a multistage booster and an exoatmospheric kill vehicle (EKV).
                      • The EKV separates from the booster in space and seeks out its target through radar updates and use of its onboard visual and infrared sensors.
                      • The EKV destroys its target by colliding with it. This process is referred to as "hit-to-kill" or "kinetic kill."

                      Designed to Counter

                      • Goal: Intercept strategic ballistic missile warheads in midcourse-stage.

                      Status

                      • Initially fielded in 2004.
                      • As of the end of 2018, the total cost of the GMD system is estimated to be over $67 billion.
                      • MDA claims that the system has had 11 successful intercepts in 19 tests. 
                      • The first test of the GMD system against an ICBM-class target with simple countermeasures took place on May 30, 2017, and was deemed successful.
                      • The first test which involved firing two interceptors against one ICBM target occurred in March 2019 and was deemed “successful.” In a real-world scenario, multiple interceptors would be fired at an incoming missile.

                      Capability / Schedule

                      • As of April 2018, the Pentagon deploys 44 ground-based interceptors (GBIs)–40 at Fort Greely, Alaska, and four at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. Twenty of the 40 interceptors deployed in Alaska are armed with an older CE-1 kill vehicle that has not had a successful flight intercept test since 2008. In 2017, the Trump administration announced its plan to deploy twenty more GBIs to be installed in a fourth missile field in Ft. Greely beginning in the FY 2021 timeframe. According to the Missile Defense Review, all 64 interceptors would be ready by 2023. These interceptors will be armed with the new, under-development Redesigned Kill Vehicle (RKV), which is intended to enhance the performance of the current EKV. But the RKV has been plagued by reliability and design problems, which led to the Pentagon stopping work on the program in May 2019 and, after a short review, terminating the program in August. The new timeline for expanding the GMD system to 64 interceptors is uncertain.
                      • The interceptors are supported by land- and sea-based radars. Early Warning Radar units are being upgraded to support the system. As of June 2018, upgrades have been carried out at Beale Air Force Base, California and at Fylingdales, the United Kingdom, as well as Thule Air Force Base, Greenland and Clear, Alaska. The less powerful, westward-facing COBRA Dane radar on Shemya Island, in the Aleutian archipelago, was also upgraded in February 2010.
                      • Former MDA Director Adm. James Syring told a Senate panel in 2013 that the MDA tests the GMD system “in a controlled, scripted environment based on the amount of time and money each one of these tests costs.” This means there are limits to the realism of the test scenarios.
                      • Following the May 30, 2017, test, the Pentagon's testing office updated its assessment, which had described the GMD system as having only a “limited capability" to defend the U.S. homeland from a small number of simple long-range missiles launched from North Korea or Iran. In a June 6, 2017, memo, the office said that the system has "demonstrated capability" to defend against a small number of long-range missiles threats that employ "simple countermeasures." However, researchers with the Union of Concerned Scientists noted in a 2017 report that the only test of the GMD system against an ICBM-class target was “simplified in important ways that enhanced the test’s chance of success instead of challenging the system to work in a realistic way.”

                      AEGIS BALLISTIC MISSILE DEFENSE (BMD)

                      Program & Key Elements

                      • Key elements include: the RIM-161 Standard Missile-3 (SM-3), RIM-174 Standard Missile-6 (SM-6), and the Aegis combat system.
                      • The SM-3 is a hit-to-kill missile comprised of a three-stage booster with a kill vehicle. There are three variations of the SM-3 missile: Block IA, Block IB, and Block IIA. Each variation will be deployed in different phases.
                      • The SM-6 is a hit-to-kill missile based on the SM-3 but offers extended range and firepower against cruise missile targets deep inland.
                      • As the Navy’s component of the missile defense system, the Aegis system is central to the defense footprint in Asia and the Phased Adaptive Approach to missile defense in Europe. Aegis is a sea-based system, with missile launchers and radars mounted on cruisers and destroyers but is adaptable to land systems as well.

                      Designed to Counter

                      • Geared toward defending against short-, medium-, and intermediate-range ballistic missiles during their midcourse phase with an emphasis on the ascent stage.

                      Status

                      • In 2005, the role of Aegis missile defense evolved from that of a forward sensor to include engagement capability.
                      • As of April 2019, the SM-3 has a test record of 40 intercepts in 49 attempts, comprising both the SM-3 and SM-6 missiles. 
                      • Japan’s four KONGO Class Destroyers have been upgraded with BMD capabilities. Japan and the United States are co-developing the SM-3 block IIA.

                      Capability / Schedule

                      • Under the fiscal year 2020 budget submission, by the end of fiscal year 2018, there are scheduled to be 39 Aegis BMD ships, and by the end of fiscal year 2024, there are scheduled to be 59 Aegis BMD ships.
                      • As of October 2017, thirty-three ships are currently deployed. Of these, 17 are assigned to the Pacific Fleet and 16 to the Atlantic Fleet.
                      • A land-based SM-3 block IB deployment occurred in Romania in 2016, and that same year, ground was broken in Poland on a site to house land-based SM-3 IIAs. The Polish site was originally scheduled to become operational in 2018 but has been delayed until 2020.
                      • The first intercept test of the new SM-3 IIA interceptor occurred in February 2017 and was successful. However, the second and third intercept tests of the missile in June 2017 and January 2018 failed to destroy their targets. There were two more tests before the end of 2018 on Oct. 26 and Dec. 11, both successful, with the December test particularly notable for being the first successful intercept of an IRBM target and using the ability to "engage on remote" using a forward-based sensor.
                      • The 2019 Missile Defense Review reaffirmed administration plans to test the SM-3 Block IIA missile interceptor against an ICBM-class target by 2020.

                      TERMINAL HIGH ALTITUDE AREA DEFENSE (THAAD)

                      Program & Key Elements

                      • Key elements include: 1) an interceptor missile comprising a single rocket booster with a separating kill-vehicle, 2) an advanced AN/TPY-2 radar unit to identify and discriminate between incoming missiles, and 3) an infrared seeker to home in on its target.
                      • The THAAD kill vehicle relies on hit-to-kill kinetic interception.
                      • THAAD batteries have four components: launcher, interceptors, radar, and fire control. Each battery can carry 48-72 interceptors (there are eight interceptors per launcher and typically each battery is believed to contain six to nine launch vehicles).
                      • THAAD missiles are fired from a truck-mounted launcher.

                      Designed to Counter

                      • THAAD’s mission is to intercept short- and medium-range ballistic missiles at the end of their midcourse stage and in the terminal stage.
                      • Intercepts could take place inside or outside the atmosphere.

                      Status

                      • As of April 2019, THAAD has succeeded in completing 15 interceptions in 15 tests since 2006. Four other THAAD tests, as of April 2019, have been classed as “no-tests.” (Note: A “no-test” occurs when the target malfunctions after launch so the interceptor is not launched.)
                      • On July 11, 2017, MDA executed a successful intercept test of the THAAD system against an air-launched intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) target. The test was the first against an IRBM-class target.

                      Capability / Schedule

                      • The U.S. Army operates seven THAAD batteries, each with its own AN/TPY-2 radar. Three batteries, each comprising six launchers, are deployed in the Pacific: one in South Korea, one in Guam, and one in Hawaii.
                      • Production of the first THAAD interceptors began in March 2011. The Army received its 200th operational interceptor in August 2018.
                      • MDA is exploring development of an upgraded version of THAAD known as THAAD extended range, which is designed to counter ultrafast gliding weapons.
                      • The U.S. and South Korea decided in July 2016 to deploy a THAAD battery in South Korea to counter North Korean threats despite strong objections from China. The battery began operating in April 2017.
                      • A THAAD battery was deployed to Guam in 2013 to counter potential North Korea IRBM threats to the island and U.S. military assets there. The first test of the THAAD system against an IRBM target occurred in July 2017.

                      PATRIOT ADVANCED CAPABILITY-3 (PAC-3)

                      Program & Key Elements

                      • Key elements include: a one-piece, hit-to-kill missile interceptor fired from a mobile launching station, which carries 16 PAC-3 missiles.
                      • The missile is guided by an independent radar that sends its tracking data to the missile through a mobile engagement control station.
                      • A blast fragmentation warhead kills the target.

                      Designed to Counter

                      • PAC-3 is designed to defend against short- and medium-range ballistic missiles in their terminal stage at lower altitudes than the THAAD system.

                      Status

                      • PAC-3s destroyed two Iraqi short-range ballistic missiles during the 2003 conflict and shot down a U.S. fighter jet. Earlier Patriot models also deployed to the region shot down nine Iraqi missiles and a British combat aircraft.

                      Capability / Schedule

                      • PAC-3 is now considered operational and has been deployed to several countries including Bahrain, Egypt, Germany, Greece, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, and the UAE.

                      The following is an overview of an early warning system to complement the missile defense systems listed above.

                      SPACE-BASED INFRARED SYSTEM-HIGH (SBIRS-HIGH)

                      Program Elements

                      • Key Elements: 1) geosynchronous (GEO) satellites orbiting the earth; 2) sensors on host satellites in highly elliptical earth orbit (HEO).

                      Dates Operational

                      • Primary objective is to provide early warning of theater and strategic missile launches.
                      • Provides data for technical intelligence and battle space awareness.

                      Cost

                      • Currently there are three SBIRS sensors mounted on host satellites in highly elliptical orbit (HEO-1, HEO-2, and HEO-3).
                      • There are four SBIRS satellites in geosynchronous orbit. GEO-1 was launched in May 2011, GEO-2 in March 2013, GEO-3 in January 2017, and GEO-4 in January 2018.
                      • As of March 2018, the program is projected to cost $19.6 billion for six satellites—four times greater than its initial estimated $5 billion for five satellites.

                      Major Issues

                      • The first sensor in highly elliptical orbit—HEO-1—was certified for operations by U.S. Strategic Command in December 2008.
                      • The most recent sensor, GEO-4, was launched aboard an Atlas V rocket on January 19, 2018.
                      • Lockheed Martin is under contract to produce GEO-5 and GEO-6, which will be launched in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
                      • SBIRS originally called for two additional sensors, GEO-7 and GEO-8, but these were scrapped in favor of pursuing an entirely new SBIRS follow-on program. The successor program has yet to be identified or developed. Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson (who resigned in May 2019) suggested the new system will be "simpler" and more survivable to enemy attacks.

                      The 2019 Missile Defense Review To-Do List

                      The 2019 Missile Defense Review identified 11 issues that needed “follow-up” analysis to make a policy direction determination, which were scheduled to be completed within six months after the January 2019 review release date.

                      Homeland Cruise Missile Defense

                      Designating a service or defense agency with acquisition authority—by using the existing requirements-generation process—to find ways to defend the homeland against offensive cruise missiles.

                      Worldwide THAAD Number Requirements

                      The Army, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and MDA will prepare a report that assesses the number of THAAD battery requirements needed to support worldwide deployments.

                      Aegis Destroyers Fully-BMD Capable Timeline

                      The Navy and MDA must deliver a report on how the entire fleet of Aegis destroyers can be converted to become fully capable against incoming missiles, including ballistic missiles, within 10 years.

                      Homeland Missile Tracking and Discrimination

                      MDA and Northern Command must prepare a plan to “accelerate efforts to enhance missile defense tracking and discrimination sensors, to include addressing advanced missile threats,” particularly focused on the homeland.

                      F-35 Missile Defense

                      The Air Force and MDA are on the hook for a joint report on how best to integrate the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, including its sensor suite, into America’s missile defense networks for both regional and homeland defense. The MDR posits that the F-35 could eventually be used to take out ballistic missiles during their boost phase, which experts have said is unlikely to be technically feasible.

                      Aegis Ashore Test Center in Hawaii

                      The Department of Defense is looking at the potential to operationalize the Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Center location in Hawaii into a full-up missile defense site to counter potential missile launches from North Korea. MDA and the Navy will evaluate the option and develop a plan that could operationalize the location within 30 days, if needed.

                       

                      Study on Space-based Intercept Layer

                      MDA will study development and fielding of a space-based missile intercept layer capable of boost-phase defense, including the most promising technologies, estimated schedules, cost, and personnel requirements.

                       

                      More Efficient Acquisition and Development

                      A big point of emphasis from officials talking about the MDR is that they believe the acquisition and development of new technologies can and will go faster. To that end, the review calls for reviews of the current Warfighter Involvement Process, which determines missile defense requirements, in order to make sure commanders who will use the systems are involved early in the process of developing the systems and requirements.

                       

                      Transregional Defense Integration

                      While the Pentagon divides the world into regional areas of responsibility, the nations capable of threatening American assets or allies with missiles do not necessarily. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the head of U.S. Strategic Command are therefore ordered to come up with a plan for “optimal roles, responsibilities, and authorities for achieving greater transregional missile defense integration.”

                      Left of Launch

                      Another requirement from the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act is for the designation of an office with acquisition authority specific to pre-launch attack operations—that is, someone who leads procurement of new technologies designed to destroy an enemy missile before it can take off. That agency must be identified within six months; after that happens, a larger review will begin to examine roles and responsibilities for updating operational doctrine in terms of left-of-launch strikes.

                       

                      Hypersonic and Cruise Missile Homeland Warning

                      And for a change of pace, the Pentagon will have nine months to research improvements for timely warnings on hypersonic and advanced cruise missiles launched at the U.S. homeland. At the completion of the study, the Office of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation will initiate an analysis of alternatives for materiel solutions to provide early warning and attack assessment against these advanced threats and their integration into the nuclear command-and-control architecture.

                       


                      Next Generation Efforts

                      The Missile Defense Agency is focusing its newest efforts to ensure the system stays ahead of developing foreign missile threats (see the below chart). Some of the advanced anti-missile technologies the Defense Department is pursuing, such as airborne lasers to zap missiles in the early stages of their flight, have been unsuccessfully pursued in the past.

                      Multi-Object Kill Vehicle

                      Three defense contractors (Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Raytheon) have been awarded contracts to develop concepts to deploy multiple kill vehicles from one booster in order to destroy decoys and multiple warheads ejected from ICBMs. MDA had planned to begin fielding that kill vehicle in 2025, but the future of this effort is uncertain.

                      Boost Phase Laser Defenses

                      MDA is recommitting to research to determine how to develop laser beams that could destroy missiles in their boost phase. Inspired by the ABL program, the vision for the new system is to mate a powerful solid-state laser to drones. MDA aims to develop a laser demonstrator by 2020 or 2021 and a deployed capability by 2025. The MDR also called for a review of developing a new weapon for the F-35 fighter jet which could intercept an intercontinental ballistic missile its in boost-phase.

                      Left of Launch

                      Left of launch is a proposed strategy that would be designed to counter missile threats before the missile is launched so as to reduce the need for expensive anti-missile interceptors to attempt to shoot down the missile. Tactically, the strategy would likely include the of cyber-attacks and electronic warfare to achieve this goal. Despite much speculation in the press about the U.S. ability to hack North Korean missile tests, the data shows that North Korea’s missile tests are succeeding at a high rate and that the failures are concentrated in new systems that had not been previously tested. The 2019 MDR reaffirmed the Trump administration’s plans to continue with this strategy

                      Space-Based Sensor Layer

                      In August 2018, then MDA Director Samuel Greaves described what the agency envisages for a future more comprehensive space sensor layer. Such a layer could look like the Air Force’s Overhead Persistent Infrared Global Scanning system and could have a regional detection and tracking capability staring down at Earth that could go after targets that are currently harder to detect or in low earth orbit, such as hypersonic missiles, and could catch missiles in the boost or burnout phases of flight. The sensor could also cover the midcourse portion of a missile’s flight by looking against the background of space and discriminate, track, and eventually send data directly to the ballistic missile defense weapon system for fire control. Finally, the sensor could also record towards the end of a missile’s trajectory whether an intercept against a target occurred or was missed.

                      Space-Based Interceptor Layer

                       

                      According to the 2019 MDR, “Given the significant advantages of space-basing for sensors, and potentially interceptors, particularly for boost-phase defense, MDA will study development and fielding of a space-based missile intercept layer capable of boost-phase defense and provide a report to USDR&E, and USDP within six months after the release of the MDR.”

                      The fiscal year 2020 White House budget requested $15 million for the new Space Development Agency to “develop a government reference architecture for a space-based kinetic interceptor layer for boost-phase defense.” It also requested $34 million for the 2020 fiscal year to develop and test by 2023 a prototype space-based directed-energy (laser) weapon for ICBMs during their boost phase. Over the course of five years, the program is expected to cost $380 million.


                      Congressional Proposals

                      In recent years, Congress has sought to encourage the expansion of the U.S. ballistic missile defense effort in the face of advancing adversary ballistic missile capabilities. These initiatives, which are summarized below, have been met with strong resistance from the administration.

                      A Third National Missile Defense Site on the U.S. East Coast

                      In the fiscal year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, Congress required the Defense Department to conduct a study to evaluate at least three possible new long-range interceptor sites that could augment the GMD system, including at least two on the East Coast. The Defense Department announced in May 2016 that it completed a draft study of three possible locations in the eastern United States for a new ballistic missile defense interceptor site, but said it had no plans to actually build such a site. The three sites are: Ft. Drum, New York; Camp Ravenna, Ohio; or Ft. Custer, Michigan. The draft environmental impact statement, which was posted on the MDA website May 31, 2016, said that the Defense Department “does not propose and has not made a decision to deploy or construct an additional interceptor site.”

                      The Trump administration missile defense review noted the benefits of a new third GBI interceptor site in the eastern United States and noted that the Defense Department has already prepared an Environmental Impact Statement evaluating locations. Though the administration declined to name a third missile defense site on the East Coast in that review, on June 26 the Defense Department sent a letter to Rep. Eliste Stephanik (R-N.Y.) announcing that Fort Drum, in her district, was selected as the third missile defense site, but that there was “no intent to develop one” because of a study earlier this year noting its cost due to environmental challenges.

                      Revising the 1999 National Missile Defense Act

                      The FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act revised the 1999 National Missile Defense Act to remove the world “limited,” and the 2018 NDAA authorized expansions in the national missile defense program. Proponents of the change argue that the 1999 legislation has prevented the Defense Department from adequately planning for the protection of the U.S. homeland from the full spectrum of ballistic missiles threats, including threats posed by Russia and China. The Obama administration strongly objected to the change, stating that the word “limited” is specifically intended to convey that the U.S. homeland missile defense system is designed and deployed to counter limited attacks (in number and sophistication) from Iran and North Korea, and not to counter the strategic deterrence forces of Russia and China.

                      Missile Defense

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                      U.S. and Allied Ballistic Missile Defenses in the Asia-Pacific Region

                      January 2019

                      Contact: Kingston ReifDirector for Disarmament and Threat Reduction Policy, (202) 463-8270 x104

                      Contents

                      U.S. Asia-Pacific Regional Defenses

                      • Aegis BMD Systems at Sea
                      • Program Overview/Elements
                      • Status
                      • Current Developments

                      Hawaii

                      • Sea-Based X Band Radar (SBX)
                      • Aegis Ashore Missile Defense Test Complex (AAMDTC) (potential)
                      • Homeland Defense Radar- Hawaii (HDR-H) (planned)

                      Guam

                      • Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)

                      South Korea

                      • Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)
                      • Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3)
                      • Aegis ships
                      • Korean Air and Missile Defense (KAMD)

                      Japan

                      • Aegis BMD ships (U.S. operated)
                      • Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) (U.S. operated)
                      • AN/TPY-2 Radar
                      • Aegis BMD ships (Japan operated)
                      • Aegis Ashore
                      • Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) (Japan operated)
                      • Early Warning Radar

                      Australia

                      • Early Warning Radar/Satellite Stations
                      • Jindalee Operational Radar Network
                      • Aegis BMD ships

                      US Asia-Pacific Regional Defenses:

                      Aegis BMD Systems at Sea

                      The Aegis system is deployed on 17 U.S. Navy destroyers and cruisers in the region that conduct ballistic missile tracking, targeting, and engagement capability. These Aegis BMD ships can engage short-(SRBMs), medium- (MRBMs), and intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) in either the midcourse or terminal phase of flight. They can also contributed to the defense of the U.S. homeland by detecting and tracking of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and sending this data to Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs) based in Alaska and California to engage.

                      Program Overview/Elements:

                      • Aegis provides defenses against regional ballistic missile threats and can also contribute to homeland defense through continuous long-range surveillance and tracking of ICBMs.
                      • All deployed Aegis BMD-capable ships are equipped with either SM-3 Block IA (first-generation) or Block IB (second-generation) missile interceptors for engaging missiles in the midcourse phase—that is, while it is in space.
                      • In addition, Aegis ships can use SM-2 and SM-6 missiles to engage SRBM targets inside the atmosphere in the terminal phase using explosive warheads rather than the kinetic hit-to-kill vehicles used by the SM-3.
                      • Aegis BMD ships carry the AN/SPY-1 radar, a phased-array S-band radar system, for detection and tracking of ballistic missiles.
                      • As of December 2018, the system has a record of 40 successful intercepts in 49 attempts against ballistic missile targets.

                      Status:

                      • As of 2016, there are 33 Aegis BMD-capable U.S. navy ships deployed around the world, with 17 of those assigned to the Pacific Fleet. Two additional Aegis ships are being repaired as of early 2018.
                      • Of these 17 Pacific Fleet BMD ships: 8 are homeported in San Diego, CA; four in Pearl Harbor, HI; and five in Yokosuka, Japan.

                      Current Developments:

                      • In its FY 2019 budget request, MDA projected having 57 Aegis BMD-capable ships and 560 SM-3 interceptors—including 48 Block IIA interceptors—deployed by FY 2023. MDA also projected a total deployment of 41 Aegis BMD-capable ships by the end of 2019.
                      • Along with Japan, the Pentagon is developing the SM-3 Block IIA missile, a 21-inch diameter variant of the SM-3 with an extended range and higher velocity than the current SM-3 interceptors.
                        • Set for deployment beginning in 2018 on U.S. Navy and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force Aegis capable ships.
                        • The first intercept test of the new SM-3 IIA interceptor occurred in February 2017 and was successful. However, the second and third intercept tests of the missile in June 2017 and January 2018 failed to destroy their targets. The third and fourth tests in October and December of 2018 were successful, and notably the December 2018 test was the first time the interceptor intercepted an IRBM-class target and "engage on remote" using a forward-based sensor. 
                      • The AN/SPY-6 radar (also known as AMDR) is being developed as a replacement to the AN/SPY-1. Once complete, the AN/SPY-6 will be able to detect thirty times as many targets that are “half the size, at twice the distance” of the current AN/SPY-1.

                      Hawaii

                      Home to U.S. Pacific Command Headquarters, Hawaii is defended by the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system designed to counter strategic threats. It also hosts the Sea-Based X-Band Radar and is slated to host a new long-range discrimination radar system by 2023.

                      Sea-Based X-Band Radar (SBX)

                      Program Overview/Key Elements:

                      • A massive phased-array X-band radar housed inside a 120-foot diameter radome and supported on a self-propelled, floating platform which primarily acts as the principle midcourse sensor for the strategic BMD system.
                      • Its radar has a 2,500-mile range and is meant to serve in an advanced position to track incoming missiles, discriminate between warheads and decoys or countermeasures, and relay this data to interceptor missiles. Many have cast doubt on SBX’s ability to fulfill this role, primarily because of its extraordinarily narrow 25-degree field of view, compared to 90-120 degrees in other air defense radars.
                      • SBX could also support regional BMD systems to protect troops in forward-deployed positions.

                      Status:

                      • SBX spends most of its time on “limited test support status” in port in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. It operates at sea in support of BMDS tests or when the security environment dictates that it may be needed.

                      Current Developments:

                      • In a February 2018 press briefing on the agency’s FY 2019 budget request, MDA spokesman Gary Pennett announced that MDA had extended the SBX’s ability to stay at sea to “closer to 300 days.”

                      Homeland Defense Radar-Hawaii (HDR-H)—(planned)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • A planned land-based, long-range discrimination radar that MDA plans to field in 2023. HDR-H would improve the ability of the GMD homeland defense system to protect Hawaii from ICBMs.

                      Status:

                      • PACOM Commander Adm. Harry Harris told Congress in February 2018 that the HDR-H is in the final phase of the siting process.
                      • MDA spokesman Gary Pennett said that same month that a second, similar radar will be deployed to an as-yet undetermined location in the Pacific (HDR-P) in 2024 to add to the sensor architecture.
                      • For fiscal year 2019, the Missile Defense Agency requested $62 million for HDR-H, and an additional $34 million for HDR-P.

                      Guam

                      Guam is the closest U.S. territory to the Korean peninsula and Andersen Air Base and Naval Base Guam are among several possible targets for DPRK intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs). With 7,000 U.S. servicemen stationed in Guam and 163,000 U.S.-citizen residents living on the island, the U.S. military sought to enhance BMD coverage of the island already provided by Aegis BMD ships by deploying a THAAD battery.

                      Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • A THAAD battery consisting of 6 launchers with 8 interceptors per launcher was deployed to Andersen Air Base, Guam in 2013 along with its associated AN/TPY-2 radar and fire control stations.
                      • Adm. Harry Harris, commander of U.S. Pacific Command, reiterated in February 2018 testimony to Congress the Pentagon’s view that THAAD is needed on Guam to protect against North Korean intermediate-range ballistic missiles.
                      • THAAD is designed to intercept ballistic missiles in their terminal phase as a ballistic missile is reentering the atmosphere on the way to its target, meaning it would have a chance to attempt an intercept at a later stage than an Aegis ship and thus provide an additional layer of BMD coverage.

                      South Korea

                      BMD coverage of South Korea is centered on engaging missiles in the terminal phase of flight. U.S. and South Korean forces operate several U.S.-made BMD platforms on the peninsula to defend against short- and medium-range North Korean missiles, including a U.S.-operated THAAD battery and several U.S.- and South Korean-operated Patriot batteries on land. South Korea is developing several indigenous short-range BMD systems, under its Korean Air and Missile Defense (KAMD) system scheduled to be deployed by the early 2020s. U.S. and South Korean Aegis BMD ships also patrol South Korean waters.

                      U.S.-operated systems:

                      Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • The U.S. Army deployed a THAAD battery, consisting of six launchers with eight interceptors per launcher and associated radar and fire control equipment in April 2017 to defend against North Korean MRBMs and SRBMs.
                      • THAAD’s position in Seongju is too far south to protect Seoul or U.S. forces stationed on the border and at Camp Humphreys. Designed to intercept missiles within a 124-mile range, the THAAD battery is positioned to potentially defend US troops landing and disembarking from the port of Busan in the southeast in the event that the United States deploys additional forces to the peninsula. It could also defend major urban areas in the southern part of the peninsula, amounting to coverage for roughly 10 million South Koreans.

                      Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • The United States is believed to operate 8 PAC-3 batteries in classified locations around South Korea, likely deployed around key U.S. military bases.
                      • PAC-3 system can share tracking and targeting data as well as engage short-range ballistic missiles at a lower altitude than THAAD, allowing for layered but overlapping terminal-phase coverage.

                      Status:

                      • In August 2017, the U.S. Army announced that it had completed upgrading its Patriot systems at Osan Air Base in Seoul to PAC-3.

                      South Korean-operated systems:

                      Aegis ships

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • South Korea operates 3 Sejong-Daewang (Sejong the Great, or KDX-III)-class destroyers that are equipped with a version of the Aegis system, Baseline 7, that is not BMD-capable. South Korea’s ships can communicate with and relay targeting data between U.S. Aegis BMD ships, but cannot currently track or engage ballistic missiles.
                      • While the Aegis system deployed on South Korean ships can link data with U.S. ships, it cannot directly link data to Japanese Aegis BMD ships because they do not share a common encryption system.
                      • According to a 2009 U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency announcement, South Korea already has SM-2 missiles in its inventory with terminal-phase BMD potential should it upgrade its Aegis systems from Baseline 7 to Baseline 9.

                      Current Developments:

                      • The next generation of three KDX-III destroyers, set to enter into service in 2023, 2025, and 2027, will be built with the latest Aegis Baseline 9 software and will be fully capable of BMD detection and tracking. Many analysts have also speculated that these destroyers will be equipped with a version of the SM-3 missile interceptor to give them an engagement capability as well.
                      • Several press reports, citing anonymous South Korean defense officials, have hinted that South Korea is looking to upgrade its three operating KDX-III destroyers with a newer version of Aegis that would give them BMD capability in the near term.

                      Korean Air and Missile Defense (KAMD)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • KAMD is a multi-platform, short-range air and missile defense concept that South Korea has been developing since 2006 to enhance its protection against DPRK SRBMs, cruise missiles, and light aircraft.
                      • In April 2014, South Korea announced it was upgrading its 8 existing Patriot Advanced Capability-2 (PAC-2) batteries to PAC-3 by the end of 2018 and would buy PAC-3 missiles by 2020.
                      • South Korea is developing the Cheongung Korean medium-range surface-to-air missile (KM-SAM), intended to intercept DPRK SRBMs and MRBMs at a relatively low altitude, similar to PAC-3.
                      • The Korean long-range surface-to-air missile (KL-SAM), under development until 2020, will reportedly be similar to THAAD, operating in a high-altitude, terminal-phase intercept role against SRBMs and MRBMs.

                      Status:

                      • South Korean forces operate 8 PAC-2 and PAC-3 batteries around Seoul (exact locations classified), which compose the only layer of defense for the roughly 20 million South Koreans that are not covered by THAAD.
                      • South Korea is reportedly in the final phase of developing the KM-SAM, which Seoul aims to deploy between 2018 and 2019.

                      Current Developments:

                      • The South Korean Defense Acquisition Program Administration approved a planned PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (PAC-3 MSE) system purchase on Feb. 7, 2018.
                      • The PAC-3 MSE systems will provide an additional layer of terminal-phase defense to the PAC-3 systems, since the MSE system can reportedly engage medium- and short-range ballistic missiles at an altitude of 40 km, twice that of the PAC-3. PAC-3 MSE missiles feature new software that improves its targeting as well as a two-stage rocket booster that extends the range of interceptors to 19 miles.

                      Japan

                      Japan has heavily invested in an integrated BMD system and has focused on midcourse defense with the Aegis system. Japan operates four Aegis BMD ships with plans to build four more by the early 2020s. The cabinet in December 2017 approved a plan to build two Aegis Ashore sites by the early 2020s. U.S. Aegis ships and U.S. and Japanese Patriot batteries offer another layer of defense.

                      U.S.-operated systems:

                      Aegis BMD Ships

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • The U.S. 7th Fleet, which is based in Japan and operates in East Asia, has six destroyers and one cruiser equipped with Aegis BMD systems that are assigned to BMD operations.
                      • These Aegis ships are equipped with SM-3 Block IA and Block IB interceptors and SPY-1 radars. They can relay or receive data to and from other Aegis ships—including both Japanese and South Korean Aegis ships—and are interoperable with Aegis and land-based systems such that their interceptors can be “launched on remote” using tracking data from off-board sensors.

                      Status:

                      • There are only five U.S. Aegis BMD ships permanently stationed in Japan. Two additional ships are under repair and likely will return to service in summer 2018.
                      • The Navy does not announce when, where, or which BMD ships patrol in the region, but reportedly half of the Japan-based BMD fleet is at sea at any given time.

                      Patriot Advanced Capability-3

                      Overview/Status:

                      • U.S. forces operate PAC-3 systems in Japan at U.S. military bases, most of which are on the island of Okinawa.
                      • The first U.S. PAC-3 systems were originally deployed in 2006. The deployments were located near Kadena Air Base (Kadena Town, Okinawa City, and Chatan Town), as well as near Kadena Ammunition Storage Area (Yomitan Village, Okinawa City, Kadena Town, Onna Village, and Uruma City).
                      • Movements and deployments of U.S.-operated PAC-3 units in Japan are not publicly available.

                      AN/TPY-2 Radar

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • The U.S. operates 2 AN/TPY-2 mobile radar systems—the same radar used in conjunction with THAAD—in Japan.
                      • Since these TPY-2 radars are not paired with THAAD launchers, they are likely operated in the forward-based mode to detect missile launches in North Korea. The radars then relay data to Aegis BMD ships.
                      • Mobile radars can be quickly moved in response to changing needs.

                      Status:

                      • In December 2014, the U.S. military deployed the second AN/TPY-2 radar to a Japanese Air Self-Defense Force base near Kyoto.
                      • The other TPY-2 radar is deployed at Shariki JASDF base in northern Japan.

                      Japanese-operated systems:

                      Aegis BMD

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) deploys four Kongo-class destroyers equipped with Aegis BMD system and SM-3 Block IA interceptors.
                      • Kongo-class destroyers can link data directly to U.S. (but not South Korean) Aegis destroyers and coordinate missile tracking.
                      • Under Japan’s constitution, it can only attempt to shoot down missiles or missile debris headed toward Japanese territory, meaning that while its Aegis ships could help track DPRK IRBMs headed toward Guam, for example, they could not launch interceptors to engage them.

                      Status:

                      • Japan is modifying two Atago-class destroyers to operate the Aegis system in the near future.
                      • The first Atago-class cruiser was launched on July 30, 2018, the Japanese Ministry of Defense said in a statement. The second is expected to be commissioned in March 2021.

                      Current Developments:

                      • Japan announced in 2013 that it planned to acquire two more Aegis BMD destroyers, which would enter service in 2020 and 2021 and be equipped with Aegis Baseline 9 and SM-3 Block IIA interceptors, bringing its total fleet of BMD ships to eight.
                      • Japan’s Aegis BMD ships are set to begin receiving the SM-3 Block IIA missile, which Japan co-developed with the United States, as soon as it is deployed on U.S. ships. The U.S. State Department cleared an advanced sale of four Block IIA missiles in January 2018. Japan expects that the extended range and higher velocity of the Block IIA will enhance the overlapping coverage of its BMD systems.

                      Aegis Ashore—(planned)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • In December 2017 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Cabinet approved a Defense Ministry plan to purchase two Aegis Ashore systems. Officials confirmed they hope the systems will be operational by 2023.
                      • Armed with SM-3 Block IIA missiles, the two sites will reportedly be able to defend all of Japan against MRBMs and IRBMs and provide overlapping layers of defense with the Aegis BMD fleet. Japanese officials believe this will allow them to reduce the number of JMSDF BMD destroyers deployed.

                      Status:

                      • Citing Japanese Defense Ministry sources, press reports in September 2017 said that Japan was evaluating sites for placing two Aegis Ashore systems on Japan’s western coast (one in the north, one in the south). Akita and Yamaguchi prefectures are seen as possible sites for the units.
                      • The Aegis Ashore units are estimated to cost at least ¥100 billion ($920 million) each.

                      PAC-3

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • As of 2015, Japan operates 24 PAC-3 units in 15 military bases, most of them positioned around Tokyo and key locations to act as a final layer of defense beyond Aegis ships.
                      • Being relatively mobile, Japan can and has frequently moved PAC-3 units to shift BMD coverage based on changing threats.
                      • Intended as a point-defense system with an engagement range of just 12 miles, PAC-3 interceptors could also break up missile debris falling over Japan.

                      Status:

                      • As of 2013, PAC-3 systems were known to be deployed to: Aibano in Shiba Prefecture; Naha in Okinawa Prefecture; Hakusan in Tsu, Mie Prefecture; on the grounds of the Ministry of Defense in Tokyo; on the island of Okinawa
                      • Japan announced in August 2017 that it was deploying four PAC-3 systems to Hiroshima, Kochi, Shimane, and Ehime in southwestern Japan.

                      Current Developments:

                      • According to press reports in 2016, Japan plans to upgrade its PAC-3 batteries with Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) missiles by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

                      Early Warning Radar

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • Japan operates a network of 28 ground-based air defense radar stations across the country, and of these 11 are BMD capable, stretching the length of Japan’s west coast and facing North Korea and China.
                      • Includes seven older FPS-3 radars that have been upgraded to FPS-4 to be BMD capable and four more advanced FPS-5 radars.
                      • FPS-5 and upgraded FPS-3 radar sites are linked to Japan’s Aegis BMD destroyers and PAC-3 batteries through the Japanese Aerospace Defense Ground Environment (JADGE).

                      Status:

                      • FPS-5 radars are stationed at: Ominato, Sado, Shimo-koshiki island, and Yozadake (Okinawa)
                      • FPS-3UG (FPS-4) radars are stationed at: Tobetsu, Kamo, Otakineyama, Wajima, Kyogamisaki, Kasatoriyama, and Sefuriyama

                      Australia

                      Australia has invested relatively little in its BMD architecture compared to other U.S. allies in the region given its low threat from missiles and has limited BMD detection and tracking capabilities and no engagement capability. But the communications and satellite terminal bases that Australia has hosted for decades as part of U.S. global signals intelligence-gathering efforts have been expanded to play key early warning and communications roles in the U.S. BMD system, and Australia is rolling out a class of Aegis destroyers that could become BMD-capable and will begin production on a class of Aegis BMD frigates in the next five years. Australia’s Aegis fleet will be integrated with U.S., Japanese, and South Korean Aegis ships and may have some engagement capability against MRBMs and IRBMs.

                      U.S.-operated BMD systems:

                      Early Warning Radar/Satellite Stations

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • Joint Defense Base Pine Gap, near Alice Springs in central Australia, is a ground control station for U.S. spy satellites that reportedly plays a role in the U.S. BMD command, control, and communications architecture. It monitors missile testing and tracks missile threats in the Asia-Pacific region.
                      • Reportedly, Pine Gap receiving systems can compute the trajectory of DPRK missile launches and send tracking data to other U.S. BMD systems.

                      Status:

                      • Hosts six satellite terminals for the Relay Ground Station, which relays data from early warning satellites (the Space Based Infrared System, or SBIRS) to U.S. and Australian command centers.
                      • Another three radomes are speculated to be associated with MDA’s experimental Space Tracking and Surveillance System (STSS) program.

                      Current Developments:

                      • According to press reports beginning in 2013, the United States and Australia planned to relocate two U.S. advanced radar stations to North West Cape, Western Australia—ostensibly for monitoring satellites in space, according to Australian officials—that could potentially monitor Chinese and DPRK missile launches.

                      Australian-operated BMD systems:

                      Jindalee Operational Radar Network (JORN)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • Jindalee Operational Radar Network (JORN), an over-the-horizon radar system recently constructed in the Australian outback, has the capability to detect missile launches in Asia with its 3000 km range and could potentially be integrated into a multilateral BMD system in the near future as an early warning and tracking capability.

                      Aegis BMD Ships—(under-development)

                      Overview/Key Elements:

                      • Australia is building an Aegis fleet that will field three Hobart-class destroyers equipped with Aegis Baseline 8 and SM-2 missiles, capable of countering cruise missiles but not BMD capable.
                      • Australia’s Aegis ships will be networked with U.S., Japanese, and South Korean Aegis ships, allowing them to share data. The Hobart-class destroyers will not be able to directly participate in BMD operations but could be upgraded.

                      Status:

                      • HMAS Hobart, commissioned in September 2017, and HMAS Brisbane, commissioned in October 2018, are operational Australian Aegis ships, but are not BMD-capable. The final Hobart class ship, NUSHIP Sydney is expected to be delivered to the Royal Australian Navy in March 2020.

                      Current Developments:

                      • Like the Hobart, the Brisbane and the Sydney also won’t have BMD capability until they are upgraded, although press reports have speculated that Australian Defence Department plans intend to upgrade the Hobart-class destroyers to Aegis Baseline 9 and equip them with SM-6 interceptors, making them capable of tracking ballistic missiles and giving them a limited terminal phase intercept capability against SRBMs and MRBMs.
                      • Malcolm Turnbull announced in October 2017 that Australia’s nine new frigates of the Future Frigate project which will begin construction in 2020 will be fitted with the Aegis system and will be BMD capable.
                      • Most analysts speculate that Australia’s Aegis fleet would be used to defend forward-deployed forces and track threats along with allied Aegis ships, but that Australia is not yet moving toward a homeland defense system.
                      Missile Defense

                      Country Resources:

                      Subject Resources:

                      WMD-Free Middle East Proposal at a Glance

                      December 2018

                      Contact: Kelsey Davenport, Director for Nonproliferation Policy, (202) 463-8270 x102

                      As part of a package of decisions that resulted in the indefinite extension of the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), the 1995 NPT Review Conference called for “the establishment of an effectively verifiable Middle East zone free of weapons of mass destruction, nuclear, chemical and biological, and their delivery systems.” First put forth by Egypt in 1990, the Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone (WMDFZ) proposal expanded on longstanding calls to establish a Nuclear Weapons-Free Zone (NWFZ) in the Middle East. Both measures, intended to be pursued in parallel, have garnered broad international support but practical progress has since been elusive.

                      Background

                      The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) first endorsed calls for the establishment of a NWFZ in a resolution approved in December of 1974 following a proposal by Iran and Egypt. From 1980 to 2018, that resolution had been passed annually without a vote by UNGA and endorsement for the proposal has been incorporated in a number of UN Security Council Resolutions. In 2018, the resolution was brought to a vote with the United States and Israel voting against. From 1991 onwards the IAEA General Conference has also adopted annually without objections a resolution calling for the application of full scope safeguards on all nuclear facilities in the region “as a necessary step for the establishment of the NWFZ.”

                      Prompted by Egypt in 1988, the UN Secretary General undertook a “Study on Effective and Verifiable Measures which Would Facilitate the Establishment of a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone in the Middle East” that looked at conditions surrounding the creation of NWFZ and made a number recommendations including a list confidence building measures. A 1989 IAEA Technical Study also looked at various modalities for the application of safeguards on nuclear facilities in the Middle East as a necessary step to establishing a NWFZ.

                      Despite extensive international support and the catalogue of resolutions endorsed including by all regional states, practical progress has been stymied by sharp disagreements between countries in the region over the terms and the sequence of steps leading to the establishment of the zone. Reflecting differing perceptions of threat and security concerns existing in the region, Israel has closely linked discussions on the establishment of the WMDFZ with the existence of durable peace and compliance with international obligations by states in the region. Arab states have said that no such linkage should exist and that the establishment of WMDFZ would contribute to peaceful relations.

                      Basic Elements of the Middle East WMDFZ

                      A future WMDFZ would commit parties not to possess, acquire, test, manufacture or use any nuclear, chemical and biological weapons as well as their delivery systems as provided for in the 1995 NPT Review Conference Middle East resolution. Definitions for what constitutes these types of non-conventional weapons are contained in international treaties on nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, as well as the 1948 United Nations Commission for Conventional Armaments. A shared understanding would also be required to regulate the types of delivery systems that would become subject to the prohibitions under the zone. Discussions have included proposals for banning all ballistic missiles with ranges in excess of 150 km.

                      Territory: The 1989 IAEA Technical Study, which first took up the geographic delimitation of a future Middle East NWFZ, applied the concept to a region extending from Libya in the west, to Iran in the east, and from Syria in the north to Yemen in the south. A subsequent UN Study expanded the concept further by including all League of Arab states, plus Iran and Israel in the zone. The Arab League has officially endorsed the UN Study delimitation and Israel has raised no objection other than note that any country in the region should be publicly recognized and accepted as an integral part thereof. Suggestions of including Afghanistan, Pakistan as well as Turkey in the eventual zone have not gained any significant traction.

                      Verification: One of the principles recognized by UNGA Resolution 3472B on NWFZs in 1975 was that such a zone “should provide for effective verification of compliance with the commitments made by the parties to the Treaty.” Israel has long insisted that any future WMDFZ must also provide “for mutual verification measures” while other proposals have included calls for setting up a regional organization to ensure compliance.

                      The WMD-Free Zone in the Middle East: 2010 - present

                      At the 2010 NPT Review Conference, state parties were able to agree for the first time to five practical steps to make progress towards implementing the 1995 NPT Review Conference Middle East resolution. The United States, Russia and the United Kingdom, the treaty depository powers and sponsors of that Resolution, committed to work together with the UN Secretary General to convene a regional conference to discuss the issue in 2012. Other measures agreed included the appointment of a WMDFZ facilitator as well as designation of a government that will host the conference. 

                      The European Union has also offered to host a seminar, a follow-up on the one organized in Paris in 2008, to discuss steps that would facilitate work on establishing the Free Zone ahead of 2012 Conference.

                      In November 2011, a two-day meeting was held at the IAEA headquarters. Proposals by 97 participating nations included:

                      • to continue working towards the establishment of a NWFZ in the Middle East;
                      • to consider declarations of good intentions as a first step to break the current stalemate;
                      • to make the best and most constructive use of every opportunity on the international agenda; and
                      • to identify specific and practical confidence-building measures.

                      The regional conference on the establishment of a WMD free zone in the Middle East proposed by the NPT was set to be held in Finland in December 2012, and Finnish Undersecretary of State Jaakko Laajava was name as the facilitator.

                      On November 23, the United States issued a statement postponing the December 2012 conference. The conference has not yet been rescheduled, and the co-conveners are offering different opinions as to when it should be held, and the reasons for the delay. The U.S. statement cited "present conditions in the Middle East" and the lack of agreement by participating states on "acceptable conditions" for the December conference. No timeline for rescheduling was included. In a November 24 statement, Russia called for the conference to be held before April 2013, citing that the preparations had already reached an "advanced stage" and that the reason for postponement was that not all states in the region agreed to participate in the conference. At the time of the announcement, conference facilitator Jaakko Laajava, had not yet secured Israel's attendance. While Iran announced that it would attend on November 7, it also said it would not engage with the Israelis at the conference, and some experts believe Iran only announced it would attend because Tehran knew that the December 2012 meeting would not take place.

                      On April 29, 2013, Egypt walked out of the NPT Preparatory Committee Meeting in Geneva in protest of the conference's postponement and called for it to be rescheduled as soon as possible.

                      Between October 2013 and June 2014, Laajava, with the support of the conveners, has held five consultations with the countries in the region aimed at reaching consensus on an agenda for the conference. The last consultation was held in June 2014. The Arab League member states and Israel have attended every meeting. Iran was present only at the first consultation in October 2013, but is regularly briefed on the outcomes of the consultations.

                      During the 2015 NPT Review Conference, Egypt led the Arab League in pushing a new proposal to dispense with the facilitator and three of the conveners (Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States), leaving the UN Secretary General as the sole authority for holding the conference within 180 days of the Review Conference ending. The Egyptian proposal also called for the creation of two working groups. Working Group I would deal with the scope, geographic demarcation, prohibitions and interim measures. Working Group II would deal with verification measures and implementation mechanisms.

                      A modified version of the Egyptian proposal appeared in the draft final document of the 2015 NPT Review Conference. The draft final document called for the UN secretary-general to convene a conference by March 1, 2016, aimed at “launching a continuous process of negotiating and concluding a legally binding treaty” that establishes a WMD-free zone in the Middle East.

                      The document called for the secretary-general to appoint by July 1 a special representative to facilitate the process. The facilitator would work with the secretary-general, as well as Russia, the UK, and the United States, to consult with the states in the region on the agenda for the conference.

                      Under the language in the draft document, if an agenda for the conference were agreed before the March deadline, the secretary-general would have to convene the conference within 45 days of agreement on the agenda.

                      The United States, the United Kingdom and Canada decided not to support the draft final document from the NPT review conference based on the language concerning the Middle East WMD-free zone. The United States, speaking at the conference, said it objected because the plan to set an agenda and hold a conference was not based on "consensus and equality," and that the document proposed "unworkable conditions" and "arbitrary deadlines."

                      The WMD-free zone in the Middle East initiative continued to be a key discussion topic at the first NPT preparatory committee meeting in 2017 leading up to the 2020 Review Conference. The Arab League did not present a unified statement on the issue, marking a growing divide among members on the subject. Instead, Egypt, Iran, and a group of 12 Arab League members, including Iraq and the United Arab Emirates, each offered separate working papers on advancing the WMD-free zone in the Middle East.

                      In 2018, the UN First Committee adopted a resolution introduced by Egypt on behalf of the Arab League for the UN secretary-general to convene a conference on taking forward a WMD-free zone in the Middle East in 2019 and every year thereafter until a zone is achieved. Israel, Micronesia and the United States voted against the resolution and 71 countries abstained.

                       


                      Chronology of Important Dates

                      1974 – The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) approves resolution endorsing the goal of establishing a NWFZ in the Middle East following a proposal by Iran.

                      1980 - Israel joins international consensus allowing the General Assembly to pass a resolution supporting the goal of NWFZ without a vote.

                      1989 - The IAEA Secretariat issues report titled “A Technical Study on Different Modalities of Application of Safeguards in the Middle East."

                      1990 - The Egyptian proposal to establish an expanded WMDFZ in the Middle East is first submitted before the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva.

                      1991 – The UN Secretary General releases a “Study on Effective and Verifiable Measures which Would Facilitate the Establishment of a NWFZ in the Middle East” outlining, amongst other things, a number of confidence building steps that could contribute to the establishment of the zone.

                      1991 – The IAEA General Conference passes resolution on “the Application of IAEA safeguards in the Middle” as a necessary step towards the establishment of a NWFZ in the region. The resolution has since been passed annually without objections.

                      1991 – The UN Security Council Resolution 687 endorses goal of establishing a WMDFZ in the Middle East.

                      1992 – Discussions on regional arms control begin under the aegis of the Arms Control and Regional Security Group (ACRS), a multilateral regional body born out of the Madrid Middle East peace talks. Envisaged to include discussions on a future WMDFZ, talks were placed indefinitely on hold following disagreement between Israel and Egypt over the agenda for discussing WMDFZ related issues.  Iran and Iraq were not party to these talks.

                      1995 - The NPT Review Conference adopts a Resolution on the Middle East calling on states to take practical steps to make progress in the establishment of WMDFZ in the region. Member agreement on resolution was seen as key to securing the indefinite extension of the NPT.

                      2000 - The NPT Review conference reaffirms the goal of 1995 Middle East Resolution and says that the resolution remains “valid until its goals and objectives are achieved.”

                      2006 – The WMD Commission Final Report calls for an intensification of international efforts to establish a WMDFZ in the Middle East.

                      2010 - The NPT Review Conference endorses five practical steps to make progress towards the goal of establishing a WMDFZ in the Middle East. Action steps adopted include convening a regional conference to discuss the issue in 2012 and appointing a WMDFZ Facilitator.

                      2011 - Two-day meeting held at IAEA headquarters on a WMDFZ in the Middle East.

                      2012 - The conference on the establishment of a WMDFZ in the Middle East is postponed due to a lack of consensus on the agenda.

                      October 2013-June 2014 - Five consultations are held for the states in the region to discuss moving forward on establishing an agenda for the conference.

                      May 2015 - The draft final document of the 2015 NPT Review Conference presented a new plan for moving forward on a conference to establish the zone. The United States, the United Kingdom and Canada objected to the document based on these provisions, thus preventing consensus and the adoption of the final document.

                       

                      Strategic Arms Control and Policy

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                      Russian Strategic Nuclear Forces Under New START

                      April 2019

                      Contact: Kingston Reif, Director for Disarmament and Threat Reduction Policy, 202-463-8270 x104

                      On April 8, 2010, Russia and the United States signed the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). The treaty requires both sides to limit the number of deployed strategic nuclear warheads to no more than 1,550 and fielded delivery platforms to 700. The treaty also permits the United States and Russia to conduct 18 annual on-site inspections of facilities operated by the other country. Biannual data exchanges indicate the current state of their strategic forces.

                      As of March 2019, Russia had 524 deployed strategic delivery systems and 1,461 deployed strategic nuclear warheads, and 760 deployed and non-deployed strategic launchers. Russia is in the process of both retiring many of its older strategic systems and replacing them with new systems.

                      For a factsheet on U.S. nuclear forces, click here.

                      Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs)

                      The following tables are based on public source data given that Russia does not release official statistics for specific New START accountable delivery systems.

                      Missile system

                      Number of systems

                      Warheads Total warheads

                      Deployment

                      R-36M2 (SS-18)

                      46

                      10

                      460

                      Dombarovsky, Uzhur

                      UR-100NUTTH (SS-19)

                      30

                      0

                      0

                      Kozelsk, Tatishchevo

                      Topol (SS-25)

                      36

                      1

                      36

                      Yoshkar-Ola, Nizhniy Tagil, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Barnaul, Vypolzovo

                      Topol-M silo (SS-27)

                      60

                      1

                      60

                      Tatishchevo

                      Topol-M mobile (SS-27)

                      18

                      1

                      18

                      Teykovo

                      RS-24 mobile

                      84

                      4

                      336

                      Teykovo

                      RS-24 silo

                      12

                      4

                      48

                      Kozelsk

                      Total

                      286

                       

                      958

                       

                      All tables are from http://russianforces.org.

                      Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missiles (SLBMs) and Submarines

                      Submarines

                      As of early 2017, the Navy had 12 functional strategic submarines of three different types, 11 of which are functional and one is being overhauled. They are deployed with the Northern Fleet and the Pacific Fleet. Bases of the Northern Fleet host six 667BDRM (Delta IV) submarines. The Delta IVs are undergoing overhaul in which they are being equipped with new missiles. The Pacific Fleet base hosts three 667BDR (Delta III) submarines but these are being withdrawn from service. Project 955 (also known as Borey or Yuri Dolgorukiy) is the newest class of submarines. Construction began in 1996 and the first joined the Northern Fleet in 2013, though subsequent submarines of this class will join the Pacific Fleet. As of January 2016, three Project 955 submarines have been accepted into service. When the missiles on Project 941 (Typhoon) class submarines reached the end of their service lives, these submarines were withdrawn from service. The one exception is the lead ship of the class, TK-208 Dmitry Donskoy, which was refitted for the new missile system, R-30 Bulava, which is designed for deployment on the Borev-class nuclear submarines The Borey class submarines are expected to constitute the core of the Russian strategic submarine fleet, replacing the aging Project 941 and Project 667 boats. Russia is planning to build eight Borey and Borey-A class subs by 2020.

                      Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missiles

                      RIA News reported, in June 2012, that the Bulava sea-based ballistic missile had entered service. The Bulava (SS-NX-30) SLBM, developed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology, carries up to 6 MIRV warheads and has a range of over 8,000 kilometers (5,000 miles). Borey class strategic submarines will carry up to 16 Bulava ballistic missiles, each with multiple warheads.

                      Strategic submarines

                      Number of submarines

                      Number of SLBMs and their type

                      Warheads

                      Total warheads

                      Project  667BDR (Delta III)

                      3*

                      32 R-29R (SS-N-18)

                      3

                      96

                      Project  667BDRM (Delta IV)

                      6*

                      96 R-29RM (SS-N-23)

                      4

                      384

                      Project 941 (Typhoon)

                      1**

                      - - -

                      - - - 

                      - - -

                      Project 955 (Borey)

                      3

                      48 R-30 Bulava

                      6

                      288

                      Total

                      12

                      160

                       

                      768

                      [a] One submarine is undergoing overhaul and those missiles are not counted.
                      [b] One submarine of the Project 941 type has been refitted as a test bed for the Bulava missile system. It is not counted in the total number of operational submarines.

                      Strategic bombers

                      Russian Long-range Aviation Command consists of six divisions, two of which are the heavy-bomber divisions made up of Tu-160 and Tu-95MS aircraft. As of early 2017, the Command is estimated to have 66 strategic bombers. The bombers can carry various modifications of the Kh-55 (AS-15) cruise missile and gravity bombs.

                      Bomber

                      Number of bombers

                      Number of cruise missiles and their type

                      Total cruise missiles

                      Tu-95MS (Bear H)

                      55

                      Up to 16 Kh-55 (AS-15A)

                      No estimates available

                      Tu-160 (Blackjack)

                      11

                      12 Kh-55SM (AS-15B)

                      No estimates available

                      Total

                      66

                       

                      ~200

                      Strategic Arms Control and Policy

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