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R-36 launch facilities in Baikonur

 

 

 

The R-36 family represented the second generation of the intercontinental ballistic missiles developed by the USSR during the Cold War. It was conceived concurrently with the Titan-2 ICBM in the United States.

The heavyweight R-36 had such new and exotic features as multiple warheads and orbital flight trajectory. The latter became a base for the Fractional Orbital Bombardment System, or FOBS, where the warhead and the upper stage of the ICBM would actually enter the orbit around the Earth on its way to the target.

R-36 family tech dossier:

- R-36 (8K67) (with light warhead) R-36 (8K67) (with heavy warhead) R-36 (8K69, OR-36, R-36orb) R-36P (8K67P)
Number of stages
2
2
3
2
Length:
34.5 meters

32.2 meters (31.7 meters in some modifications)

32.65 - 34.5 meters
32.2 meters
Diameter
3.05 meters (with protruding elements - 3.6 meters)
3.05 meters (with protruding elements - 3.6 meters)
3.05 meters (with protruding elements - 3.6 meters)
3.05 meters (with protruding elements - 3.6 meters)
Total weight (fueled)
179 -183.89 tons
179 -183.89 tons
181,297 kilograms
183.45 tons
Fuel
Oxidizer
Nitrogen tetroxide
Nitrogen tetroxide
Nitrogen tetroxide
Nitrogen tetroxide
Weight of fuel
48.5 tons
48.5 tons
48.5 tons
48.5 tons
Weight of oxidizer
121.7 tons
121.7 tons
121.7 tons
121.7

Flight range:

15,200 km
10,200 km
40,000 km
10,200 - 12,000 km
Stage 1
Stage 1 length
18.87 meters
18.87 meters
18.87 meters

18.87 meters

Stage 1 diameter
3.0 meters
3.0 meters
3.0 meters
3.0 meters
Stage 1 propellant weight:
118.9 tons
118.9 tons
118.9 tons
118.9 tons
Stage 1 dry weight
6.4 tons
6.4 tons
6.4 tons
6.4 tons
Stage 1 total weight (fueled)
122.3 tons
122.3 tons
122.3 tons
122.3 tons
1st stage propulsion

3 two-chamber RD-250 engines creating RD-251 (8D723) main engine;

1 four chamber RD-68M steering engine

3 two-chamber RD-250 engines creating RD-251 (8D723) main engine;

1 four chamber RD-68M steering engine

3 two-chamber RD-250 engines creating RD-251 (8D723) main engine;

1 four chamber RD-68M steering engine

3 two-chamber RD-250 engines creating RD-251 (8D723) main engine;

1 four chamber RD-68M steering engine

Stage 2
Stage 2 length
9.4 meters
9.4 meters
10.03 meters

12.9 meters

Stage 2 diameter
3.0 meters
3.0 meters
3.0 meters
2.2 meters
Stage 2 dry weight:
3.7 tons
3.7 tons
3.7 tons
3.7 tons
Stage 2 fueled weight:
49.3 tons
49.3 tons
49.3 tons
57.52 tons
2nd stage propulsion

1 two-chamber RD-252 engine;

1 four-chamber RD-69M engine

1 two-chamber RD-252 engine;

1 four-chamber RD-69M engine

1 two-chamber RD-252 engine;

1 four-chamber RD-69M engine

1 two-chamber RD-252 engine;

1 four-chamber RD-69M engine

Stage 3
Stage 3 (orbital) fueled weight
n/a
n/a
3,648 kg
n/a
Stage 3 (orbital) propellant weight
n/a
n/a
2 tons
n/a
Warhead type
Single 8F675: 8 Megatons
Single 8F675: 20 Megatons
Single 8F021: 5 Megatons (2.3 MT according to 98)
Three 8F676: 2.3 Megatons warheads each;
Warhead weight
3,950 kilograms
5,825 kilograms
1,410-1,700 kg
3 warheads 1,425 kg each;
Decoy weight
272 kilograms
272 kilograms
238 kilograms
401 kilograms

R-36 development cooperation:

Element Developer Leading designer Location
Overall design
OKB-586
M. Yangel
Dnepropetrovsk
Main engine (two stages)
OKB-456
V. Glushko
Moscow
Steering engine (two stages)
OKB-586
M. Yangel
Dnepropetrovsk
The launch complex (surface)
KBTM (PKO-8)
-
Moscow
Control system
NII-885
N. A. Pilugin
Moscow
The launch complex (silo)
KBSM
E. G. Rudyak
-
Thermo-nuclear warhead
VNIIEF
B. V. Litvinov
Chelyabinsk

RD-251/252 engine tech dossier:

-
RD-251 (1st stage)
RD-252 (2nd stage)
Developer
OKB-456 (Moscow)
OKB-456 (Moscow)
Thrust on the surface 241 tons -
Thrust in vacuum 270.4 tons 92 -120 tons
Chamber pressure 85 kg per sq. cm 91 kg per sq. cm
Burn time 120 seconds 160 seconds
Height 2.88 meters 2.168 meters
Diameter 2.52 meters 2.59 meters
Dry weight 1,730 kilograms 715 -725 kilograms

The development of the R-36 was officially authorized on April 16, 1962. (74) The missile was declared operational in 1966 and remained in armaments until 1978.


 

PICTURE GALLERY

The R-36 family of ballistic missiles (left to right): 8K67, 8K69, 8K67P. Credit: KB Yuzhnoe


Left to right: scale models of R-36-O, R-16 and R-36 ICBMs. Copyright © 2001 by Anatoly Zak


The R-36 missile lifts off from the silo complex in Baikonur. Credit: KB Yuzhnoe


The propulsion section of the orbital warhead of the R-36-O missile. Credit: KB Yuzhnoe


The RD-252 engine, which powered the second stage of the R-36 missile. Copyright © 2002 by Anatoly Zak


The MIRV warhead is being integrated with the R-36P missile in silo complex in Baikonur. Credit: KB Yuzhnoe


The warhead of the R-36 missile. Credit: KB Yuzhnoe


The dissected warhead 8F675 of the R-36 ICBM, which was retrieved after a test flight. Copyright © 2001 by Anatoly Zak