NTI Releases Assessment of New Russian Nuclear Weapon Delivery Systems

The Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) has released the first detailed, exclusively open-source assessment of the five new nuclear weapon systems announced by Russian President Vladimir Putin, alongside a new analysis underscoring the need to extend the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) based on the report’s findings.

Authored by Jill Hruby, NTI’s inaugural Sam Nunn Distinguished Fellow and a former director of Sandia National Laboratories, the report, Russia’s New Nuclear Weapon Delivery Systems: An Open-Source Technical Review, provides insight into the technical characteristics, deployment schedule, and military objectives for each of the five systems, plus one additional system that may be nuclear capable in the future.

An accompanying analysis, Russia’s New Nuclear Weapon Delivery Systems: Implications for New START, Future Arms Control, and Strategic Stabilityby NTI experts Mark Melamed and Lynn Rusten, draws on Hruby’s technical assessment. The paper concludes that “extending New START would ensure that significant new Russian systems would be subject to limits and verification and would provide a forum for discussing the other strategic systems that are further away in time from deployment.” 

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