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Weapons Of Karabakh War: Soviet’s R-17 Elbrus Ballistic Missile

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Weapons Of Karabakh War: Soviet's R-17 Elbrus Ballistic Missile

Click to see full-size image

The Soviet R-17 Elbrus ballistic missile is more commonly known in the West as the Scud-B.

The R-17 Elbrus or SS-1 Scud-B became operational in 1962 as the upgrade to the Scud-A and was operational in other European and Middle Eastern countries by 1965.

The Scud-B uses a liquid stage-single propellant engine and has a range of 300 km.

The Scud-B is fired from a mobile truck Transport-Erector-Launcher (TEL). The firing sequence for the Scud B usually takes one hour.

The missile is over 11 m long. Its maximum diameter is 0.8 m.

Its empty weight is just over 2 000 kg. Once fuelled it weights 5 862 kg. Warhead weights nearly 1 000 kg.

These missiles have nuclear (100 kT), high explosive (1 016 kg), chemical (985 kg) and thermobaric warheads. Maximum range of fire is 300 km.

Once launched missile reaches its target within 5 minutes. Minimum range of fire is 50 km.

The Scud missile has inertial guidance. By modern standards this missile is inaccurate.

Its CEP is about 450 m.

Weapons Of Karabakh War: Soviet's R-17 Elbrus Ballistic Missile

Click to see the full-size image

The Scud-B is based on a MAZ-543A heavy high-mobility wheeled chassis. Vehicle is powered by a 38.9-liter diesel engine, developing 525 hp. It is a standard tank engine. Vehicle has a maximum speed of 45 km/h on roads and 15 km/h over rough terrain.

Each launcher vehicle is escorted by a whole host of support vehicle. It is escorted by reloading vehicle, fuel tanker, crane, command vehicle, positioning vehicle, and some other support vehicles. Also there is a vehicle which carries warhead for the missile. During the cold war Scuds were also escorted by decontamination vehicles.

The Scud-B has long since been decommissioned by the Russian military, yet, the missile has spread to dozens of countries around the world. Some countries even began manufacturing their own version of the Russian Scud-B.

Armenia still uses the outdated R-17 Elbrus, and it is one of the weapons it used to target Azerbaijani military facilities far from the frontline, together with the Tochka.


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  1. Zionism = EVIL says:

    Imprecise terror weapon and does not work in strategic targeting. Its error radius is over a km. It is more like an urban demolition weapon. With the new generation of pinpoint accuracy precision weapons these old Soviet missiles are obsolete, too slow to erect, fuel and fire and liquid fueled and more a danger to the operators. SF has given an objective analysis and covers all the main points and no need for further elaboration.

  2. cechas vodobenikov says:

    does this have any relevance in any conflicts today?

    1. Vox Populi says:

      Only if you want to kill civilians and destroy buildings.

  3. Samuel Vanguard says:

    azeris still have the initiative but they are headed towards disaster if Turks stop supporting them.

  4. Kamīrusan says:

    Was wondering why aren’t Armenians buying modern Russian equipment ? all they have is 40 year old air defense and Soviet made OSA systems that were bought used from Jordan… the few Tor-M2 they have are nowhere near enough to cover the airspace of NK/Arktash, moreover they don’t even have electronic warfare systems and the ones they have are ancient? it’s like they want to lose or something .

    Then again I’m guessing they’re too poor to afford them, and the leadership are sucking up to the west instead of strengthening ties with the one country that can protect and support them

    1. Great Khan says:

      hahahaArmeni have no money….losers…..

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