FAS | Nuke | Guide | Russia | Theater |||| Index | Search |

R-11 / SS-1B SCUD-A
R-300 9K72 Elbrus / SS-1C SCUD-B

The Scud is a mobile, Russian-made, short-range, tactical ballistic surface-to-surface (hence the nomenclature abbreviation SS) missile system. The SCUD-series guided missiles are single-stage, short-range ballistic missiles using storable liquid propellants. The Scud is derived from the World War II-era German V-2 rocket. Unlike the FROG series of unguided missiles, the SCUDs have movable fins. Warheads can be HE, chemical, or nuclear, and the missile, launched vertically from a small platform, has a range of 300 km. Unsophisticated gyroscopes guided the missile only during powered flight - which lasts about 80 seconds. Once the rocket motor shut down, the entire missile with the warhead attached coasted unguided to the target area. Consequently, Scuds had notoriously poor accuracy, and the farther they flew, the more inaccurate they became. SCUD missiles are found in SSM (SCUD) brigades at front/army level. The SCUD series of missiles gave the Soviet front and army commanders an integral nuclear weapons capability. Non-nuclear variants of the SCUD missiles have been exported to both Warsaw Pact and non-Warsaw Pact nations.

At launch, a basic Scud contains about 3,500 kilograms (7,700 pounds) of IRFNA and about 1,000 kilograms (2,200 pounds) of fuel. Most of the IRFNA and fuel is used within the first 80 seconds of flight when the missile is gaining enough speed to reach its target. When this speed is reached, the Scud is designed to shut off its engine by shutting off the propellant tanks (a fuel tank and an oxidizer tank). The unused propellants—roughly 150 kilograms (330 pounds) of RFNA and 50 kilograms (110 pounds) of fuel—remain on board for the remainder of the flight.

In the early 1970s, the Soviet Army sought a replacement for the 9K72 Elbrus (SS-1C `Scud B') system, which had a very slow reaction time [around 90 minutes to prepare and fire] and its poor accuracy when using conventional warheads. The replacement system, codename 9K714 Oka [SS-23 Spider], was developed by KB Mashinostroyenia (Machine Industry Design Bureau) in Kolomna. This system was phased out in compliance with the INF Treaty in the late 1980s. Russia’s TBM inventory is limited to thousands of SS-1c/Scud B and SS-21/Scarab SRBMs as a result of the Intermediate Nuclear Force (INF) Treaty, which required the elimination of the FSU’s extensive stocks of MRBMs.

A second SCUD-followon effort began in the form of the SS-26, which apparently entered service by 1999. The SS-26 SRBM is expected to be both a replacement for the SS-1c/Scud B and an export. By the early 1990s, the `Scud' system was unquestionably obsolete and many of the 9P117 launcher vehicles were retired due to age.


DIA SS-1bSS-1cSS-1dSS-1e
NATO Scud-AScud-BScud-CScud-D
Service R-11 / R-175 R-300
OKB/Industry 8K14
Design Bureau Makeyev OKB Makeyev OKB Makeyev OKB Makeyev OKB
Approved ............
Years of R&D ............
Engineering and Testing ............
First Flight Test ............
IOC ............
Deployment Date 1957196519651980s
Type of Warhead
  • nuclear
  • Conventional unitary blast
  • Chemical warhead
  • HE, CHEM (thickened VX)
  • Conventional unitary blast
  • fuel-air explosive
  • 40 runway-penetrator sub-munitions
  • 100 11-lb (5-kg) anti-personnel bomblets
  • Warheads 1111
    Yield...5-80 kiloton ......
    Payload (t)770-950 kg
    Total length (m)10.25 m11.25 m11.25 m11.25 m
    Total length w/o warhead (m)
    Missile Diameter (m) 0.88 m0.88 m0.88 m0.88 m
    Launch Weight (t) 6,300 kg
    Fuel Weight (t)
    Range(km) 130 km300 km575-600km700 km
    CEP (m) (Russian Sources)
    CEP (m) (Western Sources)4,000 m900 m900 m50 m
    Reaction time 60 min
    Engine Designation ............
    Design Bureau ............
    Engine Configuration One engine One engine One engine One engine
    Propellants Liquid Storable Liquid Storable Liquid Storable Liquid Storable
    Fuel Kerosene UDMH UDMH UDMH
    Oxidizer nitric acid RFNA (Russian SG-02 Tonka 250)RFNA (Russian SG-02 Tonka 250)RFNA (Russian SG-02 Tonka 250)
    Main Engines Burning time (sec.) ............
    Main engines Thrust Sea Level/Vacuum (Tonnes) ............
    Main Engines Specific Impulse Sea Level/Vacuum (sec.) ............



    Sources and Resources

    FAS | Nuke | Guide | Russia | Theater |||| Index | Search |

    Implemented by John Pike, Charles Vick, Mirko Jacubowski, and Patrick Garrett
    Maintained by Webmaster
    Updated Saturday, September 09, 2000 12:30:00 PM