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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

SM-SP21 Gnome intercontinental missile

The "Gnome" was a three-stage intercontinental missile equipped with a propulsive solid fuel sustainer engine of the first stage, solid-fuel engines second and third stages, as well as the accelerator. Talk about this idea come from the time of FA Zander. In theory, the solution was based on the work of Arturovich Friedrich Zander: to use as an oxidant the atmosphere. First, the mass of fuel reduced is almost twice, and secondly, the specific impulse jet engine, in principle, is nearly 10 times greater.

In the late 1950s, the Soviet Government tasked the rocket troops to create a mobile complex of intercontinental range, the most suited to the needs of the troops, and with the maximum permissible load on strategic fortified bridges in the USSR - the weight of the entire complex should not exceed 65 tons. The restriction on the mass of the complex determined the maximum weight of the rocket in 32-35 tons (the mass of the empty conveyor is approximately equal to the mass of the rocket). The solution to the problem of an extremely simple operation in the complex was and remains the use of solid fuel engines.

Work on mobile solid-strategic was initiated D.A.Ustinov. However, the solid rockets had a serious drawback - a smaller specific impulse than a liquid one. Accordingly, other things being equal, to achieve the same range of conditions needed more fuel, the rocket will be heavier. At that time, the solid rocket rocket RT-1 was already designed, with a starting mass of 34m flying at 2400 km and RT-2, respectively - 51 tons and 10,000 km. But for a new mobile complex, it was a challenge to produce a weight of not more than 32 tons!

Decree of 2.06.1958 under No. 708-336 of the Council of Ministers of the USSR determined a list of several bureaus that were to begin development for such missiles. Among them there were KB: Korolev, Makeyev, Tyurin, Tsirulnikov and Yangel. However, the conventional liquid or solid-propellant missile designs of that period did not have a TTX to meet the weight limitation requirements. This was reported to the top, and the works were officially closed by the decree of the USSR Council of Ministers No. 138-48 of February 5, 1960.

At that time, the outstanding designer of mortars B.I.Shavirin headed the KBM-Design Bureau of Machine-Building (Kolomna KBM). Boris Shavyrin, who was not directly involved in the development, proposed a completely innovative alternative - to use as a first stage a ram-jet air-jet solid propulsion engine. This idea was presented to D.A.Ustinov and so interested in it that he gave the go-ahead to carry out R&D.

Due to their inherent simplicity SFRJ's present a cost effective option for a wide range of applications that demand a sustained thrust force during a substantial portion of their mission profile. The SFRJ cycle is the same as the ramjet cycle except that the fuel exists in solid form within the chamber and the stoichometry of combustion is controlled by the regression rate of the fuel. The fuel is not a propellant in the solid rocket motor sense but a pure fuel, inert without external oxidizer much like in a hybrid rocket motor. Because the fuel exists in the solid form, inclusion of solid metals is significantly easier than in a liquid fueled ramjet. In its simplest form, a SFRJ is basically a tube with a fuel grain cast in it. Solid fuel acts as an ablative insulator, allowing higher sustained combustion chamber exit temperature levels (and hence specific thrust) with less complexity. Fuel is stored within the combustion chamber allowing for more efficient packaging and higher mass fractions than liquid ramjets with no need for pumps, external tankage, injectors or plumbing for fuel delivery.

According to some Western sources the short-range PR-90 ballistic rocket was the likely prototype of "Gnom". The highest point of the trajectory of 40 kilometers. Maximum range: 100 to 200 kg km.Ves TUT, TUT Hours: 120 seconds. Hours ramjet propulsion TT 550 seconds, the fuel weight 300 kg topliva.Polnaya weight: 1500 kg. Weight of warhead was 550 kg. The equivalent rocket with a rocket engine (such as American Lance) would weigh twice as much. In terms of analog with TTRD (such as French Pluton) weight would have been three times as much. This project was canceled in 1961. Shavyrin offered Yangel the ramjet engine for its 8K99 rocket. Other information about the PR-90 is largely absent from domestic Russian sources.

The rocket was supposed to be equipped with a supersonic ramjet sustainer engine. "Gnom" was the only domestic intercontinental ballistic missile equipped with a ramjet. The engine was developed in OKB-670 of the Ministry of Aviation Industry under the leadership of Michael Bondaryuk. The rocket carried the accelerator with composite propellant placed inside the main engine of the first stage, which is clocked its speed up to 1.75 Mach. After working, the accelerator was separated and comprises a first step. The engine of the first stage - solid fuel ramjet rocket motors (SRM).

The first stage engine ran 60-70 seconds, until the rocket reached a speed of 5.5M. After separation of the ramjet, the rocket included a second stage, and then the third stage. The second and third stages were equipped with engines with solid composite propellant. The solid fuel for the engine of the first stage has been developed at the Research Institute of HRP under the direction of Nicholas Silin. Solid charges for the accelerator were developed AANII chemotherapy under the direction of Yakov Savchenko. Mixed solid charges for the second and third stages were designed in SRI-125 under the leadership of Boris Zhukov.

First, for the direct-flow stage, he proposed to place in front of the next. Its tail is often inserted into the second, a purely missile with a warhead. In flight, the separation, boosters would have tied up the first stage of the second. For all the originality, it nearly ruined the idea of standing in spite of the fact that the "nested" rocket has offered Oberth in 1929, and realized this scheme and today only in relation to submarine systems. This scheme applies to Makeyevka R-39 / SS-N-52 (likewise posted surfacing unit, but there it happens under the water in the presence of buoyancy force and viscous enough environment). Later a more conservative option has been selected. It is assumed options based: mobile, marine, including in the developed ekranoplans (ship-layout 'the Caspian Monster') and a hidden silo.

The self-propelled launcher was placed on a T-10 heavy tank chassis. The weight launcher with a rocket had to be about 60 tonnes. The launch unit [PU] was designed by CB-3 of the Leningrad Kirov factory under the guidance of Joseph Kotin. The silo launcher was developed in CDB-34 under the direction of Eugene Rudyak. Complex means to overcome missile defense system was created in SRI-108. Autonomous inertial control system was designed in the Central Research Institute of Automatics and Hydraulics (TSSHAG) under the leadership of Elijah Pogozheva. In the case of the start of series production, it was scheduled to deploy [according to different data] from 10 to 20 reloadable mobile launchers. Shelf life rocket TPU was about 10 years old.

The head of the scientific and technical direction, the chief designer of the KBM Engineering, the laureate of the State Prize, Oleg Mamalyga, recalls the tests: "In the end of October 1965, a few days after the death of Boris Ivanovich Shavyrin, the first launch of a single-stage HRV at the Turaevo stand took place." The maximum air flow during engine operation was very high - 1,200 kilograms per second.There was not enough power for Turaevo's booths to ensure the engine was running at maximum power. We had to mount additional equipment. Glass flew from the windows of the houses, Nobody in the world ever did and or ever experienced such engines. It was a unique project ... "

In late 1965, for unknown reasons on a range of work was stopped. The armed ICBMs "Gnom" was not accepted. A Year later, the Soviet Union deployed the 45-ton 'Topol' ICBM on the 7-axle MAZ 'centipede', with the complex of a total mass of 98 tons.

Length 16.14 m
The diameter of the missile, m 2,6 m
starting Weight 29 tons
Number of stages 3
Distance 10,000-11,000 km
Throw-weight 470-535 kg
nuclear warhead light / heavy, MT 0.5 megaton
Fuel blended solid

Gnom Gnom Gnom Gnom Gnom Gnom

This project does not appear to have been detected by contemporaneous Western intelligence. Recent open source Western literature makes no mention of this project.

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