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SECURITY STUD1E S

O'VIE
Fi I'LE. COPY WOR KING' GROUP:.' -,7AD-A223 379

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INTERNATIONAL STUDIES
MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE
OF TECHNOLOGY
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139

11111

AD-A223 379

DTIC
AN ANALYSIS OF SOVIET MILITARY

E E T

WRNG ON UNITED STATES RE-B

G'heckelAPMFOVEyD

Fja RJCLIC RELE~sg

IRBTol4UiMEI

Research Report No. 86-3

API?~

4, ECUIrlKA,(kJ

Department of Political Scienos

Center for International

tudieS

?hss~oh~mtts Institute of Technology


?by 1986

01 "8 6
90 06 25 01.42
90

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II

Accession For
NTIS GRA&I

cPY

DTIC TAB

Unarnunced
0
Ju.st i" '.catioi

Distribution/
Availability Codes
Avail and/or
Dist
Special

This report was produced by the Soviet Security Studies Working Group
under contract to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, DoD,
contract number MDA 903-82-K-0107 and 903-84-K-0136.

IDTIC
ELECTE

C 1986

Soviet Security Studies Working Group, MIT.

All rights reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduoed,

transmitted, transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated


into any human or computer language, in any form or by any means

whatsoever, without the express written permission of the author.

I
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The views, opinions, and findings contained in this report are those of
the author(s) and should not be construed as an official Department of
Defense position, policy, or decision, unless so designated by other
official documentation.

Executive Summar

This report reviews Soviet military writing on U.S. r"


vehicle WV

try

technology and analyzes this literature in light of what it

jreveals concerning the Soviet military's technology assessment process.


A review of over 40 Soviet military books and Journal articles produced

Ithe following conclusions:


*

The military's assessments consistently--over various technology


areas and over the course of 20 years--focused on explaining how a
given RV technology worked.

I
*

A direct correlation existed between the Soviet military's threat

perception regarding a given RV technology and how extensively that

technology was assessed.

The assessments of U.S. re

ntry vehicle inertial guidance

technology

were anomalous.

The assessments correlated well with the actual state of U.S. RV


programs

Changes in the direction of these programs were

accurately portrayed in the Soviet military literature.

The quality and technical proficiency of the assessments improved


considerably over time.

iii

It

The technology assessment process, however, changed little over the


4 - -1
20 year course of this studyA The process has been and remains
oriented to providing the Soviet military with the information
needed to minimize its response time to U.S. re.,entry vehicle
technological innovation.
The great majority of Soviet military writing on any particular

U.S. RV technology attempted to explain how that technology worked.


.While most military writers adopted this framework of analysis,

surprisingly few sought to analyze in any detail the military


significance of the various technological innovations. "The foregoing
suggests that the assessments were structured to address a very
practical consideration: to give the Soviet military audience the
information needed to formulate a response to a specific military

threat.
A review of the military literature also revealed a positive
correlation between the level of threat posed by a given U.S. RV
technology and the extent and quality of the corresponding Soviet

assessments.

Of the twelve RV technology areas the Soviets examined,

four were given special attention: passive radar masking (for example,
penetration aids), MIRV, ablative thermal shields and
maneuvering/terminally guided RVs.

Three of these four technology areas

(ablative thermal shields being the exception) were precisely those


re-entry vehicle technological innovations which, over the 20 year
period of this study, created the greatest threat for the Soviet
military.
iv

IAdvances

in U.S. re-entry vehicle inertial guidance technology

posed just as great a threat as penetration aids or NIRV, yet these

systems did not receive special attention in the Soviet military


literature.

In fact, this technology area was virtually ignored.

Three

reasons can be advanced for the anomalous treatment of inertial guidance


technology.

For one, the improvements in this technology area may have

been judged too sensitive for assessment in the open source military
literature: The inertial guidance system improvements which were a part
of the MklA RV program gave the U.S. a hard target kill capability. A
second possible reason for the anomalous treatment of U.S. inertial
guidance technolog- has more to do with the Soviet military's own
advances in this technology area: The Soviets may not have wanted to
draw attention to a technology area--inertial guidance-where they were
making considerable progress in the latter half of the 1970s.

A final

reason for this unusual treatment may center on the mundane nature of
inertial guidance systems--mundane at least in comparison with more
exotic guidance technologies such as terminal guidance.
*in

Other reports

this series have concluded that the Soviet military often displays a
bias toward more exotic systems when assessing U.S. military
technologies.

Another of this report's conclusions is that the Soviet assessments


responded in a fairly prompt manner both to the changing nature and
direction of various U.S. RV technology programs and to changes in the
overall strategic climate.
broad directions of the U.S.

The assessments accurately portrayed the


re-entry vehicle program--from the

program's early emphasis on enhancing BM penetration capability to its


V

more recent focus on terminal guidance.

With respect to the strategic

climate, the Soviet assessments responded in a logical and predictable


manner to the 1972 ABM Treaty.

The amoumt of analysis on U.S.

penetration aids and RV hardening programs (technologies needed to


counter an ABM system) declined oonsiderably after 1972.
On a more general note, this study shows that the assessments
improved considerably over time.

The magnitude of this improvement,

however, is greater than first apparent.

The complexity of the U.S.

technology being assessed has increased dramatically over time.

It

is

one thing for the Soviets to assess competently the relatively simple
technology of multiple re-entry vehicles; it

is quite another to assess

more recent and complex RV technologies like terminal guidance.

Yet it

was precisely with respect to these later U.S. RV technological


innovations that the Soviet assessments demonstrated a higher level of
technical proficiency.
assessments still

It must be emphasized however, that the

ignored many critical questions concerning various RV

technologies.
An interesting question--and one for which this study can provide
no answer--is why the assessment process has improved. Is the
improvement explained by the Soviet military's experience in developing
its own RV technology?

Or, is it

simply that more Soviet military

writers are being given access to western sources?


sources themselves improving?

It

Or, are the western

is quite probable that the answer is

some combination of the three..

This change in the quality of the

individual assessments has been paralleled by a consistent and


unchanging bias in the overall technology assessment process.
vi

This

process has focused on the specifics of how a given U.S. RV system


works; it has shunned subjective evaluations of the performance

I
Ianalyses.

capabilities of these systems and has rarely employed worst case


In sum, the technology assessment process has sought to

provide the Soviet military community with the information which will
best allow it

to respond to the challenge of U.S. technological

innovation.

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~vii/

~T

I.

I. INTRODUCTION
1.1 Purpose and Organizational Structure . . . . . . . . . .
1.2 Methodolo
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ....
1.3 Sources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

4
6

2. DESCRIPTION OF SOVIET MILITARY ASSESSMENTS OF U.S. RV TM


LOBGY .
2.1
Re-entry
Vehicles
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
. . . .
S2.1.12
Types ......
......... .....

9
99

2.1.1.1 Multiple WarheadRVs

9
11
13
17
21
21
22
24
25
31
35
37
40

2.2

2.1.1.2 Multiple Independently Targeted RVs (MIRV)


2.1.1.3 Maneuvering RVs . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.1.1.4 Mmneuvering, Terminally Guided RVs . . .
2.1.2 Thermal Shielding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.1.2.1 Heat Shields . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.1.2.2 Ablative Coatings . . 0 . . . 0 . . . . .
2.1.3 Radar Masking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2. 1.3.1 Passive Means . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.1.3.2 Active Means . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2.1.4 Hardening . . .
. . . .
. . . . . . . . o
2.1.5 Design/Shape . . .
. . ..
. ..
. ..
....
2.1.6 Guidance Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . .
o
Impact of RV Technology on Ballistic Missile Defense
Systems . . . *. ..
... . .
. . . . . .
..
.
2.2.1 Detection Technology ..
........
. ...
2.2.2 Computer Technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

42
45
46

3. S51Af'R1Y AND)CNCLUS IONS . . . o . . . . . . . . o o . . . . . . .


3.1 The Nature of the Soviet Military's Technology Assessment
Process . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.2. Soviet Military Perceptions of Main Direction(s) in U.S.
RV Development - o . o . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3.3 Nonrecognition/Recognition of Need for Tradeoffs . . . .
3.4 Final Remarks . . . . .. 0
. . . . . .
... . .
. . .
3.4.1 The Changing Nature of the Soviet Military's
Technology Assesments .
............
.
3.4.2 The Unchanging Nature of the Soviet Military's
Technology Assesment Process .
. . . ..
..
.

48

APPENDIX I: ACRNYM

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..

60

.PPIEDIX
A

..

11

AP EN IX III
NDTES

. ....

....

......

....

.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

*.. . . . .**

BIBLIO(tAPHY . ..

Iix

.......

..

.. . . .
..

..

..
..

.0...

. .

. .
.

. .
..

. .
.

..

. .
.

48

54
56
58
58
59

61
67

75

85

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1.* INTROUIxrMo

1.1
*

Purpose and Organizational Structure


This paper will present a description and analysis of Soviet

military assessments of United States re-entry vehicle (RV) technology


The primary objective is to gain a better understanding of

since 1965.

how the technolor- assessment process of the Soviet military works.

There are several facets to a technology assessment process which one


can examine.

The first is the question of input.

basis for these assessments?

What type of information is utilized and

how is this information acquired?


question of process.
acquired?

That is, what is the

The second facet centers on the

What is done with the information previously

How--through military writings--are technological advances in

U.S. M7 programs presented to the military audience?

If the first faet

focuses on inputs, and the second on prooess, then the third is


concerned with outputs.

How does the Soviet military respond to

advances in U.S. RV technology?


action?

Are there calls for technological

For changes in force structure?

For revisions to Soviet

Imilitary doctrine and strategy?


The second facet-the process--will be the focus of this paper.
While the first component, the input, is certainly of interest,
limitations in the paper's data base do not allow this issue to be
addressed properly.'

Iis

The question of output is critical; but it,

too,

beyond the scope of the present paper. One can, however, defend the
paper's bias toward process over output on the grounds that what the

I
I

Soviet military does in response to particular U.S. technological


advances must, in part, be a function of how these technological
advances are assessed.
To better understand how the Soviet military's technology
assessment

process operates, it is useful to analyze Soviet discussions

concerning

various U.S. RV systems along four lines of inquiry:

Issue 1:

Do the discussions focus on the basic physics of the RV


system?

Issue 2:

Is the focus on simply describing the components of the


system?

Issue 3:

Is the focus on the system's operational characteristics?

Issue 4:

Do the discussions focus on the capabilities of the system?

The above requires further explication.


focus.

Issue 1 has the most basic

A physicist would describe this as starting from "first

principles."

The focus of Issue 2 is descriptive.

Here, a Soviet

military writer will discuss, for example, specific technical


characteristics and instrumentation.
consist of?

He is asking: What does the system

In addressing the third issue, the writer operates at a

higher level of aggregation..

He brings together the various components

and mechanisms which comprise the system, and asks: How does it all
work?

An assessment which focuses on this issue is process oriented.

Issue 4 moves one step beyond the third.

After aggregating the various

components and seeing how they work, one asks, What are the system's

capabilities?

An assessment which addresses this issue predicts

performance capabilities and seeks to assess the system's military


significance.
The body of the paper describes Soviet military assesnents of
various American RV programs.

A given assessment may address more than

one of the issues noted above, and different assessments of the same
technology may focus on different issues. Nevertheless, for each
particular U.S. re-entry vehicle technology program, an estimate is made
of the primary emphasis of the corresponding Soviet assessments.
The paper's final section will summarize the results.

particular, I will examine how--if at all--Soviet military assessments


of U.S. RV technologies changed over the past twenty years.
assessments always, on the whole, address the same issue?

In

Did the
If

differences existed, were they simply a function of variations in the


technolog- ,2 which was being assessed?

Or, could differenoes in the

assessments be ascribed to systemic considerations, that is,

to

improvements and/or changes in the technology assessment process over


time?

Several broader issues will also be addressed.

For example, have

the technical level and overall quality of the assessments improved over
the past twenty years?

Finally, drawing upon and aggreating the

jvarious military writings,

I will present an analysis of the Soviet

military's changing perception of the main direction(s) in U.S.

I
I

vehicle development.

re-entry

Three appendices supplement the body of the paper.

The first gives

a listing of various acronym; the seoond provides background


information on the various books utilized in this study.

Appendix III

gives, in some detail, definitions for several of the Russian phrases


used in translation throughout the paper.

1.2 Methodoloy

A number of open source Soviet military books and journal articles


concerning U.S. RV technology (see Table 1 and bibliography) were
examined and, as a first step, a content analysis was performed.
Table 1
Chronological Listing of Sources
Books
1965
1966
1967

T&V

VPVO

W1

ZVO**

VIZh

SVE

KZ

MS
X*

1969
1970

X5X
X*

1973

1974

..

1968
1971
1972

VZ

XX

XX

X$X

XX

X*.X*
X*

.-

--.

X*X*

1975

1976
1977
1978

1979
1980

X _
X*.

-......
__X

XX

X*X*

XX

1981
1982
1983

X
X0

--.-.-

*Primary sources in Russian.


**Not available in U.S. prior to 1978.
Key:
T&V = Technoloar and Armments
VPVO : PVO Herald
VM = Militar- Thought
ZVO : Foreign Military Review
VZ = Military" Knowledge
4

Z = Znamenosets
VIZh = Military Historical Journal
SVE : Soviet Military Encyclopedia
KZ : Red Star
MS = Naval Digest

.%

I
determination was made of what the military writers were

Basically, a

ISoviet

military

has discussed nearly all aspects of the U.S. RV research

and development (R&D) effort


(Advanced Ballistic
this is true.
various

suggests that the

of contents

the table

A quick glance at

discussing.

oonducted

under

the

aegis

Re-entry Systems) program since 1962.3

of

the ABRES

And, indeed,

The reader, however, will see that the assessments

components

of

the

re-entry

vehicle

important respects: (1) Some R&D programs


example, penetration

of the

R&D effort differ in two

received great

attention (for

aids), while others gained relatively little notice

(for example, improvements in the accuracy of inertial guidance systems);


and

(2) The

sophistication4

technical

with which the Soviet military

assessed various programs differed markedly.

JAn

important methodological issue here is how one


a

lack

of

program.

jneed

Soviet

writing

on

a given aspect of the U.S. RV

Should this be taken as an indicator that the military

(and

here,

technology?
sign

military

that

the

question

would

Or, should the paucity


a

particular

U.S.

be

why)

of assessments

technology

this paper's

data base

be interpreted

'anomaly

in

was deemed too sensitive for

I
I

accuracy of

The

Lack

The

limitations in

Improvements

to

of

attention

devoted to

U.S. inertial guidance systems is an

and certainly could be cited as evidence


interpretation:

the

as a

(to be discussed below) do not allow me to favor

one interpretation over the other.


provements

felt no

to assess a particular

discussion in the open source Soviet military press.

should interpret

the

inertial

in favor

of the second

guidance

system of the

?Nk.12A re-entry vehicle gave U.S. ICBM a hard target kill capability.$

A second aspect of the


issues

which

process.
behind

allowed

me

methodology
to

was

disaggregate

to
the

develop
technology

These were introduced in the previous section.


the

creation

of

this

methodological

understand better how the technology

military differed

with

respect

tool

assessment

to

various

series of
assessment

The motivation

was

process

a
of

technologies

desire

to

the Soviet

and how the

process changed over time.


Finally, after analyzing the assessments and categorizing them with

respect to which of the four issues they addressed, an aggregate analysis


was carried out to study the
technology assessment

overall

process.

nature

of

The purpose

the

Soviet military's

here was

to gain a better

understanding of the biases and assumptions which underlay the process.

1.3

Sources
The majority of the

(Voyenizdat).

Vestnik

The journals

protivovozdushnoy

Voyenn-ye

znaniya,

Morskoy sbornik.

entries

sources
from

included:

oboronv,

Znamenosets,

from open source

Tekhnika i vooruzheni e,

Zarubezhnoye

voyennoye obozreniye,

Voyenno-istoricheskiy

zhurnal

and

The only restricted Soviet publication utilized was the

journal Military Thought.


other

was drawn

military journals and books published by the military publishing

Soviet
house

research material

were
the

In addition

used:
Sovetskaya

to the

books and

the military newspaper


vovennaya

journals, two

nasna,2& zvezda and

entsiklovedi

In

the

bibliography, primary sources used in the original Russian will appear in


transliterated form.

I !

The

fundamental constraint

on

the

analysis

and

conclusions

contained in this report is the limited nature of the data base. As table
1 indicated, slightly over 40 different articles and books were utilized.
This number,

however, is

misleading for several reasons.

of the articles contained only a brief reference


(sometimes a

to U.S.

For one, many


RV technology

paragraph and in several instances only a sentence or two).

In addition, much of the material tended to be repetitive-often changing


little over
book

on

the course

strategic

concerning the
U.S.

of several

rockets

years.

lifted

past development,

(that's being

simply

listed

the

physical

example, RV

weight

and

height,

deployed,

how

five

pages

from

1971

journal article.6

a source devoted exclusively to an assessment of U.S. RV

technology, one often found that the


and

kind)

present status and future direction of

' technology nearly word-for-word

Finally, within

Indeed, the author of a 1974

many

the

U.S.

discussion was

highly descriptive,

parameters of the RV/MC


range,

plans

CEP,

how many

system (for
the

U.S. has

to deploy by a given date).

numbers and the forecasting for which

they are

Such

used, while interesting,

are not germane to this report.


Given

the

above,

each

section

preceded by a chart which indicates

in

Is the

the second part of the paper is

the nature

analysis based on books alone?

example,

suppose

that

the

Also imagine

concluded that they

were

that after

books

and

describing these

structured

to

various factors.

material for a certain section

source

consists of chapters from two different


article.

source material.

On articles? Being explicit about

the nature of the source material allows for control of


For

I
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of the

address

two

page journal

assessments, it is

Issue

1, the "first

principles"

In

question.

this

one

instance,

conclusion ws biased by the nature of the sample.


rarely

longer

than

ten

pages,

The point

Journal articles are

often

only

two

books.'

or

three pages

here is that the journal articles-simply due to space

limitations--cannot probe a given U.S. RV technology with


as

infer that the

and for complex technical issues (like

re-entry vehicle technology), they are


long.

could

Thus,

the

conclusion--that

understanding of the basic physics behind

the

assessments stressed an

the U.S.

technology--would be

spurious and due to the special nature of the data base.

the same depth

I
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2. DESCRIPTION OF SOVIET MILITARY ASSESSMENTS OF U.S. RV TECHNOLDGY

Re-entry Vehicles

2.1

2.1.1

2.1.1.1

Tyes

Multiple Warhead RVs


Sources
Journal Articles

Books

2
The

early

focused

to

references

solely

on

multiple

U.S.

the bulk

addition, any

BMD

planners

paucity of references to
given that

The

only

performance

was the ability of MRVs to increase the probability

of penetrating an opponent's
that

capabilities.6

performance

capability discussed

reason

warhead RVs (MRV) were brief and

system.9

conceived

M!'Vs

of U.S.

during

It was

precisely

for this

MRVs in the late 1950s.

of
the

uid-1960s

The

is understandable

M7V R&D occurred between 1960 and 1964; in

remaining Soviet

interest in

U.S. MRVs

was, by 1967-68,

jbeing overwhelmed by concern over the next advance in U.S. RV technology:


pV.

10

1Several

sources

facilitating a

i
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1

in

1971

again

pointed

to MRVs

breakthrough of EMD systems."",1

as

means for

book published in

this year made the first explicit linkage between MRV development and the
A

program. 1 3

This

author

also

noted

that

MRVs

were

of

"comparatively uncomplicated and


ejecting from

the rocket

imperfect

three unguided

construction

warheads in a humch."14

this source alluded to the drawbacks of MRV9, another was


about the limitations of such RVs.

designated for

quite explicit

He noted that since MRVs travel along

trajectories which are in "close proximity,"


by one anti-rocket with a nuclear wahead."

they can

all be "destroyed

He went on to add that "thus

the next step in development of multiplecharge nosecones was to

the above

authors were focusing on performance capabilities.

The second one, in addition, perceived


driven

by

system.
RVs,

inadequacies

in

the

the decision

capability

In contrast, another author gave a

and

very

briefly

described

that if

to create

MIRVs as

of MiVs to penetrate a BND


more complete

how the system worked.

noting that a . V enhances the probability of


he added

give the

MIRVI."15, 10

nosecones their own control [that is,


Both of

While

penetrating a

assessment of
After again
END system,

all the "separated warheads" reach the target then the

."area destroyed will be larger than for one warhead with a TNT equivalent
equal to

the sum

of all the separate warheads." As for how a M4W works,

it was noted that "multiplecharge nosecones" are those which "separate in


the

middle

part

of

the

trajectory

(beyond the limits of the Earth's

atmosphere)."1 7

Admittedly, this says very little.

only assessment

where how

a MRV

It is,

however, the

works was given at least equal footing

with explanations of this system's performance capabilities.

In sun--and

in terms of the four issues outlined in the Introduction, the assessments


of

U.S.

MRV

technology

addressed

Issue

technology's performance capabilities.

10

4,

that

is,

what

are the

Multiple Independently Targeted RVs (KMRV)

2.1.1.2

Sources
Books

Red

Journal Articles

1
The first

assessment of

both performance

on MRVs,

the writings

the

majority

focused on

capabilities and the technical detail of how the system

of

assessments concerning MIRVs.

Soviet

ten years

the next

This dual focus was a pattern followed over

worked.
by

appeared in a 1968 Military

MIRV technology

Thought article which, in contrast to

Star

In terms of

performance capabilities, this author perceived the U.S. emphasis on MIRV


as

dictated

by

the

need

[which] constitutes one of


increase in

the

main

MII

bus.

It

was noted

control system in the form


two-component liquid-gas
the bus to change

Iwhich

in

trends

the

modernization and

the combat effectiveness of missile systems."

details presented by the author dealt


of the

the anti-missile of the enemy

"overcome

to

of

that the

"several

generator."

its flight

solely with

The technical

the "control systems"

bus would have an "improved"

jet

nozzles

operating

from a

Such a control system would allow

trajectory and

release warheads

"each of

will allegedly be guided to an individual target."1 6

jThree

authors,

writing in the early 1970s, focused extensively on how

the MIRV system would carry out its mission.1S They sought to explain how
one got

from an

initial state-a rocket oarrying several warheads, to a

final state where these


descriptions are

Isequence
II

targets.

The

same and really quite simplistic.

The

warheads were

essentially the

of events the three authors

striking different

outlined

is

given

below:

(i)

to

target

the

first

objective,

the

heatshield

nosecone's propulsion system activated; 2 '


krepleniya)

of

the

first

warhead

motors are turned off; (iv) the

(ii)

is

discarded

and the

the binding latch (zamok

is opened; (iii) the control system

warhead--now free--continues

its flight

along a ballistic trajectory; (v) the nosecone changes trajectory and (i)
through (iv) are repeated. 2 1
very technical

analysis.

It should

be stressed

that this

is not a

The level of analysis is below that given, for

example, by Herbert York in a 1973 Scientific American article.'2


one had

to select

the most

Yet if

technically inclined Soviet assessments of

MIRV during the early 1970s, these three authors would be chosen.
All three devoted part of
MIRV's performance
some detail.
(i)

their analysis to

capabilities, with

an assessment

of the

one (Anureyev) discussing them in

Anureyev listed three performance criteria:


MIRV will eliminate the possibility that all warheads

will

be intercepted by one anti-rocket;


(ii) MIRV allows several targets to be struck
simultaneously;
(iii) MIRV warheads are

a more

effective

means of hitting a

target than one high yield RV.23


Anureyev took

several paragraphs to develop the third point. He gave

three examples of attacks--two were countervalue


the

other

was

a counterforce

attack

field)--to demonstrate the utility

attacks against cities,

against a soft area target (air

of attacking

with

many

low yield

warheads.*#
A 1977 article on ballistic rocket

"nosecones" differed little from

the above authors in its assessment of MIRV. The technical detail was no
12

jgreater, but the

author's description did provide a better picture of the

complex interaction between the

guidance and
target.'5

various

sub-systems

(for

example, the

stabilization systems) required to deliver a warhead to its

The

Mk12

guidance

system was

briefly

mentioned;

it was

described as an inertial system with three gyroscopes, accelerometers and


a computer.

The Soviet assessments of MIRV technology

those examined

for this

were unique among

study as it was not possible to categorize them

with respect to the four issues outlined in the Introduction.


3 and

4 were

all addressed,

and if

Issues 2,

a bias existed in the assessments,

then it was (but only slightly) toward Issue

3, that

is, describing the

system's operational characteristics.

2.1.1.3

Maneuvering RVs
Sources
Books

Journal Articles
4

1In

all

Encyclopedia Entry

Soviet assessments

on maneuvering RVs, there was

of early (late 1960s-early 1970s) U.S. R&D


less

discussion

of

capabilities than there had been in the case of MIRV.

Ivery

specific performance
The difference my

well be explained by the differing nature of the debate over the two

technologies in

the U.S.

utility of the technology

With MIRV, one group in the U.S.


as

means

for

penetrating

stressed the
BND system.

Others, however, peroeived MIRV--with its ability to greatly increase the


number of warheads at

I
1

technology.

relatively little

Still others

argued for
13

cost-as a

potent oounterforce

or against MIRV on both accounts.

The point is that


capability

the

there

U.S.

was

was

no

broad

seeking

consensus

with

research conducted

what performance

technology: enhanced BMD

MIRV

penetration? counterforce capability? or both?

on

The early

maneuvering RV

by the ABRS program, however, left no doubt that the

sole rationale for this technology was to increase the probability of IMD
penetration.

If

the

Soviet

military

maneuvering RVs in the U.S. trade

was following the discussions of

journals

(as

it

no

doubt

was), it

probably saw little analysis of specific performance criteria and instead


much discussion of the
placed on

U.S. RV

that endo-atmospheric maneuvering

severe demands

technology (two examples: the high g environment and

severe RV nosetip erosion induced by maneuvers).

Thus, one

might expect

Soviet assessments to parallel these discussions and to focus more on the


specific technical characteristics and

components

which

comprised this

new technology.
In only

one instance,

it was very brief)


developing a

of

however, was there a discussion (and even then

the

technological

maneuvering RV.

brief explanations of
example, small

how

fins, in

this

Instead,
new

barriers

technology would

several

maneuvers.*6

discussion of

how

the

evasive
maneuvers

the impact

with this emphasis, there

overcome in

work:

How, for

combination with the aerodynamic forces created


be

emphasis on

be

the assessments focused on very

by the rapidly moving RV, would


preprogramed

to

utilized

would

of these

be

to

guide

the

RV through

There

ws

a consistent

executed,

and

virtually no

maneuvers on

the RV itself.&? Along

was a focus on the guidance oomponents: the

aerodynamic fins, rotating nozzles, and guidance

14

otors.2S

*1

The

first

references

maneuvring

to

RVs

appeared

formulation typical of those employed by other authors,


that, in

terms of

performance criteria,

the U.S.

in 1968.

In a

one source noted

was developing an RV

Another source
an 'anti-missile' maneuver."29
out
carrying
of
"capable
also writing in 1968, focused on two specific aneuvering systems being

and

the

ballistic

guided

nontechnical description
vein,

this

same

re-entry

of both

author

vehicle (MRV)

maneuvering re-entry

program: the

developed by the ABRES

vehicle

(BRV).

systems was

given.3 0

In a different

asserted

that

the

MRV

and

very brief,

BaRV were being

developed for the Minuteman II and Minuteman III missiles.2 1

While such

a statement was not incorrect, it did give a skewed view of U.S. re-entry
vehicle R&D at that

time since

the main

development program--MIRV--was

nowhere mentioned.
A

1971

system--the

article

discussed

maneuverable

description of

the

ballistic

BaRV

and

re-entry

one

other

vehicle

(MERV).

the two systems was straightforward and nontechnical.

both cases, the author was concerned with describing how the
its terminal
although it

maneuvers.*2
was erroneously

maneuvering "with

the help

Both descriptions
stated that

terminal maneuvers*24

executing its

two RVs were described in 1977 as those


in the atmosphere's

odd that the 1977 article continued to emphasize

the BaRV and HDV programs.

For several years prior to 1977

i
I

RV executed

of Jet fins [struynyy rul']."22 In fact, the

These sam

It is

In

the BaRV would accomplish its

U.S. RVs which "have a guided part of the trujeotory


dense layers."21

The

were essentially correct,

B(MV, as tested in 1967, contained a propulsion system for

maneuvering

15

the bulk of

U.S. R&D

on maneuvering

advanced

aneuvering re-entry vehicle (AMARV)

It

is

only

Voyennaya

the

systems centered on the Mk50 evader RV and the

"maneuvering

Entsiklopediya

which

system.

noseone"

entry

acknowledged

the

in

the

severe technological

demands that endo-atmospheric maneuvering placed on a RV.


the

"development

connected with

of

MARVs

technical

normal nosecones,"

[that is,

the best

noted that

difficulties

more

serious

than

building of

and, in addition, the "greatest difficulties arise in

the heat

vehicle's body.'

It

maneuvering re-entry vehicles] is

the creation of snail (miniaturized) high


working out

Sovetska

and erosion

accuracy guidance

systems and

resistant materials" for the re-entry

While again a nontechnical assessment, this was by far

description of the technological challenges and instrumentation

requirements generated by the development of maneuvering RVs.


The

k500 evader RV,

the longest

maneuvering technology,
case, the

author was

running U.S.

R&D effort concerning

was mentioned explicitly only once.


wrong in

describing the

!k500 as

And in this

a system which

"will significantly increase the accuracy of the delivery of the warheads


to the targets.""7
incapable of

The

Mk500,

technology-the

to

inherent

accuracies.' 0

achieving high

the Mk500 by Soviet

due

military writers

M500--being

be consistent

my be

overlooked

with the

features, is

The lack of attention given


an example
in

technologies--the AMARV and B(RV, for example.


exotic would

design

favor
Such

results of

of a "mundane"
of

more

a bias

exotic

toward the

other research in this

series."
To

summarize,

the

Soviet

assesuments

16

of

American

maneuvering RV

I'

technology showed a clear bias toward Issue 3; that is, these assessments
focused on the system's operational oharacteristics.

2.1.1.4

Maneuvering, Terminally Guided RVs


Sources

Books

Journal Articles

Prior to 1977, the


technology
journals.

Encyclopedia Entry
1

combination of

received

little

attention

Three authors, writing in

the possibility

maneuvering and
in

Soviet

the early

terminal guidance

military books

1970s, noted

in passing

of such a combination, but gave no indication of what it

would imply in terms of enhanced performance capabilities


statement

and

typical

of

developing an RV which

all

three

for RVs.40

sources is the following: The U.S. is

can "maneuver and even

aim at

the target after

they [i.e., the RVs] enter the atmosphere."41


A

1977

would play

article

pointed

in

combination

any

to

the crucial role that digital oomputers


of maneuvering

and

terminal guidance

technologies, and also briefly discussed both the AMARV and the precision
guided re-entry vehicle (FORV) programs.
of a

ETsVM (in

for controlling

the "use

contradistinction to electronic analog apparatus) allows


the work

complex maneuvers,

of the

control apparatus,

heightened acouracy

and energy requirements of the


emphasized and portrayed as

Imaneuvering technology.

I
I

The author noted that

the realization of

and ... a reduction in the mas

noseone."48,'4

a necessary

Digital

technology was

complement to the guidance and

The allusion to analog systems is interesting as


17

the U.S.,

by this

long been

time, had

using digits] technology.

This

reference, in fact, my have been a frank recognition of the need for the
Soviet Union to perfect its digital technology.
This some

part of the ongoing R&D conducted under the


The

author

of PGVs

article described the development

the AEMS program.

aegis of

lGVs would combine maneuverability and high

that

observed

and AMARVs as

accuracy, and noted that terminal guidance would be achieved with various

is only

comparison method (metod sopostavleniya).44 This

used the

sensors which

partly correct.
in

guidance

comparison method

The

that--similar

the Pershing II's RADAG (radar aimpoint)

to

guidance system--a radar beam sweeps the


1970s, the

U.S., however,

only

on

the

terrain

active

terminal

of

technology.4 '

guidance.
In

This

focused .on active means

the late

"ensure accurate

when discussing the AMARV, again

same author,
of terminal

The Soviets

terms of performance

capability, it was observed that PGRVs would be able to


target strikes."4 6

In

below.

was also actively researching various passive

means (for example, IR detectors)


focused

active means of

is an

guidance.

The author

pointed out

specialists" consider that a guidance system consisting of

that "foreign

"radar and optical rangefinders (altimeters)" should ensure the "required


strike accuracy."4'
the AMARV at

that

In fact, the guidance system the U.S. envisioned for


time

was

passive:

inertial guidame

three-axis

system.4s
As

before,

presented

the

it

was

most

terminally guided

the

Sovetskaya

comprehensive

VoyennaYa

assesment

of

RV would carry out its mission.

only active means of terminal guidance

18

ntsiklovedi~a which
how

ianeuvering,

Curiously, here, too,

were discussed.

It observed that

the RV's position in the terminal part of its trajectory was "determined
with the aid of an on-board radar altimeter or a rangefinder, a microwave

Iradiometer

and

other

Admittedly,

devices."49

the "other devices" the

author had in mind could be passive; even if this was the

case, he chose

not to discuss them explicitly.


Three

made

in

the

At several junctures, the

mention.

points

other

quite clear.

encyclopedia

digital computers

role of

used

against

strongly

"small,

and

installations, command centers


trade-offs

was

explicitly

explicit: Such

defended

recognized:

(launch

targets

"[clompromise

perfect

its

effective

maneuvers

for

overcoming

silo

the need for

Finally,

others)."

RVs could

decisions" are
guided RV

necessary between the capability of a maneuvering, terminally


"to

was made

the performance criteria cited for maneuvering,

Secondly,

terminally guided re-entry vehicles were quite


be

entry are worthy of

the PMO and the

possibility of hitting the target with the given accuracy."S 0

JTwo

articles in the

missile

and

its

radar

last

the

Pershing II

guidance system (RADAG).

In only one

several

aimpoint

years

described

instance was performance capability discussed, and it was in terms of the


The listing was much more extensive

Pershing II's targeting hierarchy.


than that noted for

1designated

for

articles, railway

junctions and

The assessments of the


re-entry vehicle.

I
I

source noted, was

"striking defended and undefended targets such as oouiand

centers, surface and umderground

nature.

II, one

other RVs. The Pershing

The

RADAG

weapons depots,

fuel and

other supply

the Junctions of important highways."5

system

were

the

descriptions, however,

The various components of the guidance


19

best

produoed

for any

remained nontechnical in
system were

listed, and

both authors gave a brief and understandable description of how the RADAG
system sweeps the 'errain below and converts these radar scans to digital
form for

comparison in

the on-board

digital computer.

One author, in

addition, presented an excellent schematic presentation of how

the RADAG

system operated.s
In

the

more

recent

explicitly recognized.

article,
At one

the

point,

need
it

for several trade-offs was

noted

that

"decision was

taken" to reduce the RV's speed by applying "aerodynamic braking upon its
entry into

the upper

explanation for

layers of

the atmosphere.

range of

is a correct

Pershing II performs a "tip-up" maneuver as it

why the

enters the atmosphere's denser layers.54


how the

This

the Pershing

Later on,

the author described

II could be increased-without adding an

additional stage-by replacing the radar guidance system with an inertial


one.55

The

RADAG

system

is

larger

and more bulky than an inertial

system; clearly, a Pershing II equipped with an

inertial guidance system

would have a greater range.


While the

Platanov article

still left much unsaid.


above, there

was one

of the

better ones reviewed, it

For example, with the first

could have

been an

trade-off mentioned

explanation of why it was necessary to

lower the RV's heat regime (in order to prevent the foration of a plasm
sheath around

the RV

which would

effectively blind

the RADAG system).

Another example: How does one, when constructing a "window" at the tip of
the

RV

through

which

the

radar

sees,

maintain the integrity of the

Pershing II's ablative coating (and hence the accuracy of the


questions are

examples of

the critical

Such

technological hurdles which the

Pershing II/RADAG R&D effort had to overcome,'s'

20

RV)?

U..

In terms of the categories


maneuvering, terminally
e

the

addressed Issues

guided RVs

uphasis, however, was clearly on the second and

assessments of

2,

3,

and 4.

third issues;

The

that is,

on explaining

the "nuts and bolts" of the

technology and the system's

operational

characteristics.

latter

The

consistently addressed

characteristics--was most

outlined,

previously

issue--operational

by the Soviet military

writers.

2.1.2

2.1.2.1

Thermal Shielding

Heat Shields

Sources

Books

Journal Articles

The discussions of RV heat shields


in

nature.

Iablative
the many

Prior

to

1971,

in that

heat shields:

year, various

the requirement

extremely high surface

finish;S8

effectiveness relative

to how much they weigh.60

their

excessive

analysis: no explanation of how the RV absorbs

be conducted into its internal systems.


result

of

such

heat

induction:

authors noted

that they have an

weight;59

their low

There was no technical

the thermal

energy which

Nor was it explained how the heat absorbed by an RV would

surrounds it.

Iend

and uniformly negative

there was no mention of heat shields (or

coatings), but, beginning


drawbacks of

were brief

21

Instead,
a

the focus

signifioant

was on the

increase

in the

"internal temperature of the nosecone

[which]

can

disable

the control

system and lead to the destruction of its explosive [podryv] system. "$'
The

need

to

utilize

materials

with

high thermal conductivity was

recognized.

The only such materials mentioned were copper, beryllium and

"others."*

At one point, it was noted that heat shields could "utilize

copper coverings on which is carried a thoroughly


nickel."*S

The need

needed

such

high

asymmetries in the heat


produce asymmetries

film of

to maintain a high ("polished") surface finish was

mentioned several other times.


one

polished thin

Nowhere,

surface

however, was

it

explained why

finish: Any surface anomalies induce

transfer and

ablation processes,

in the RV's surface.

which in turn

These surface asymmetries will

degrade the RV's accuracy.


In sum, the few assessments which did discuss heat shields
a

bias

toward

addressing

Issue

oriented toward describing the

2;

that

is,

all showed

these assessments were

technical characteristics

of heat shield

technology.

2.1.2.2 Ablative Coatings


Sources
Books

Journal Articles

Ablative coatings
The use of such
surmount

the

Encyclopedia Entry
1

were discussed

coatings
considerable

was

much more than normal heat shields.

clearly

drawbacks

presented
posed

by

as

the

only

heat shields.

way to
Several

times, it was noted that ablative coatings were receiving intensive study

22

in the

U.S.6* In

addition, the

"Golovnava chast'

rakety" entry in the

Sovetskaya Voyennaya Entsikloiedya mentioned only ablative coatings when

Idiscussing RV thermal shielding."s


The technical

analysis of

level than seen elsewhere.

how ablative coatings work was at a higher

One

"partially absorb the thermal

author

to the

It

is

coatings

gave a

listing of

presented,

challenge, and the

the re-entry vehicle

thermal

good description

interesting

coatings first in the


Such

that

ablative materials

energy

not

to the

"gaseous wake flowing from the nosecone."66 Writing

in 1974, another author


coating.67

that

energy" surrounding

and "with their evaporation" transfer


nosecone but

noted

U.S.

at

was

that

of an

the author chose to place active

various thermal
that

nowhere

active ablative

time,
near

shields he described.
considerable

to

deploying

technical

them

on its

ICBMs.6"

late 1974-approximately six months after this author's book was signed
to

An active

press.6 '

Several

ablative materials as
materials

coating was, however, flight tested on a U.S. RV in

could

sources
thermal

in

the

shields.

"withstand significant

light";70 another claimed that

removal

cited

[noseoone's]

inherent advantages in utilizing


One

author

thermal

"existing [ablative]

outer

layer--in

noted

flows

that such

[and] they are

materials allow the

the process

of

its

decomposition--of nearly 50% of the heat supplied to the nosecone."? 1 The


sam author noted that ablative materials worked so well due to their low
specific conductivity.
coatings,

the

As for the materials to

following

were

in ablative

mentioned: plastics, fiberglass, silica,

carbon and graphite. 7'

2
23
I

be employed

Although the data base is small, the assessments


technology were

structured in

outlined above were answered.


a

bias

in

favor

of

the

such a

of ablative coatings

way that three of the four issues

Issues 1, 2 and 3 were all addressed, with


third

question-that

is,

the

operational

characteristics of ablative coatings. This technology area was one of the


few instances

where the

principles" question.

Soviet military

The reason for

assessors addressed the "first

this, however,

my simply

nature of the sample (see box at beginning of section).


for this

technology area

were books;

and, as

be the

Half the sources

noted above,

it is most

likely only in books that Soviet military writers have the space to probe
in depth a given U.S. technology.

2.1.3

Radar Masking

Soviet

military

implications of

assessments

that technology

of

of

radar

study.

masking

explosions) was

masking

technology

and the

for ballistic missile defense comprised

the most extensive and long-running


preparing this

radar

body of

literature

encountered in

The critical problem created by the various means

(chaff,

dipole

reflectors,

one of discrimination.

high

altitude

nuclear

Whether or not a given U.S. ICBM

carried MIRV warheads mattered little if it was

impossible (or extremely

difficult) to identify even one warhead in a cloud of penaids which could


easily number in

the

thousands.

The

following

discussion

has been

divided into sections on active and passive means of radar masking (false
targets in Soviet military terminology).

include

RVs

equipped

penetration aids

with

equipped in

radio

Among the

transmitters

a similar

24

way, and

former, the Soviets

to Jam radar stations,


high altitude nuclear

Sexplosions.

I
I
1

Passive

means

include pneumtic spheres, dipole reflectors

3
and corner reflectors.'

2.1.3.1

Passive Means
Sources
Books

Journal Articles

The first discussions of "counter-radar" operations

occurred in 1966.

A PVO Herald article noted an increase in such operations; their goal was
to ensure the "penetration of airplanes
air defense."7 4

Several

well-written, highly

or missile

warheads through the

months later, an article appeared which gave a

technical assessment

5
of "anti-radar camouflage."'7

The basic techniques of anti-radar camouflage were:

(i)

manipulate warhead design to reduce its radar cross-section;

(ii) utilize radar absorption materials to reduce the


radar cross-section;

eI

(iii) employ various false targets (corner reflectors,


dipoles, decoy rockets) -T

I
Three points

Iof

how

the

excellent. A

I
I

need to be made about this article.


various

types

good Scientific

of

radar

First, the discussion

absorptive materials

work

American-level analysis was accompanied by


25

instructive

diagrams.

extensive: chaff,

regards

inflated metal

were all mentioned.

trajectory midpoint."

the

listing

overall

the

they would

real

quality--while

rocket packages, and

warhead at the

"mask the

targets could hamper or preclude


radar

targets.""7

Finally, the

high--was diminished by one egregious

In discussing re-entry vehicle design, the author noted

optimal shape--pointed--for

minimizing the

the

heat

shape which

re-entry.",'9

was

It was recognized that, while false

fact, false

In

altogether "observation of

error.

targets,

balloons, small

targets burn up in the atmosphere,

article's

false

corner reflectors, passive electronic equipment, radar

signal re-beaming,
"other devices"

As

reduced

pointed

that the

radar cross-section was also

loads

generated

shape actually

maximizes

upon
the

atmospheric
heat

loads

generated on the RV as it enters the atmosphere.


By 1971, the discussion of passive means of

radar masking had been

extended to cover several new methods, and additional detail was given on
One author discussed

several techniques assessed earlier.


covered with

thermal shielding.

Such shielding could protect the false

targets from the heat generated upon


help to mask RVs

in the

its heavy weight.

atmospheric re-entry

final part

failed, however, to note the prime

false targets

and therefore

of their

trajectory."e The author

drawback of

such a penetration aid:

This same writer presented a unique opportunity to see

how a western source was

utilized.

In

the

course

of

his

text, he

referred to a specific issue of the American journal Space/Aeronautics as


the

source

for

anti-rockets.'1

list

Table 2

of. various

ways

to

protect

an

RV

from

siumrizes the author's listing, while table 3

26

is a reproduction of the western source.

A oomparison of the

two tables

reveals that the Soviet author:


(i)

gave re-entry vehicle oonfiguration/materials


higher priority in his list;

(ii)

dropped any reference to re-entry vehicle


attitude control;

(iii)

placed active ECMs in his secondary listing;

(iv)

placed maneuverable RVs above multiple RVs;

(v)

placed hardened RVs and high yield warheads in

his secondary list;


dropped any reference to nuclear blackout and EMP.

(vi)

Several interesting
fact that, in
multiple RVs

1971,

points follow from this comparison.


the

Soviet

is consistent

author

with the

placed

For one, the

maneuvering

discussion above

RVs above

which noted that

Soviet military writers often favor the more exotic technologies in their
analyses.

U.S.

MIRV

maneuvering re-entry
this

period--were

deployments

had begun the previous year (1970);

vehicles--while
still

many

years

undergoing

flight

away from actual deployment.

second interesting point is that the Soviet author

Ito

Galosh) deployed
blackout

on

its

at that
first

A bit

Given that the Soviet ABM system (the

time would
shot,

The

dropped the reference

nuclear blackout of BD) radars as a means of protecting an RV.


of speculation is worthwhile here.

testing during

the

probably have
Soviet

blinded itself with

author's

omission

of

any

discussion of nuclear blackout may have reflected a desire on the part of

Ithe

1
I

Soviet military not to discuss weakmesses of its own systems.

27

Table 2
Various Methods of Defending an RV From Anti-Rockets

(i)

Blow-up last stage of rocket;

(ii)

False targets

(pneumatic balloons and heat resistant cones,

for example);
(iii)

RVs with special shapes or with

special

radio

absorbing

coatings;
(iv)

Dipole reflectors;

(v)

Maneuvering re-entry vehicles;

(vi)

Nosecones

consisting

multiple RVs (?4RV) or

of

several nuclear warheads (either

MIRV; it

is not

clear to

which he

refers);

Separate from the above were listed three others:


(i)

Deploying

electronic

ooumtermeasures

against

BMD

radar

stations;
(ii)

Hardening of RVs to

withstand

effects

of

explosions

by

"nuclear tipped anti-rockets;"


(iii)

Note:

RVs carrying high yield warheads (60-100 megatons).

The above lists preserve the author's rankings.

Ivanov,

A.

worazhayushchee deystviye.

(1971).

Raketno-yadernove

(Moscow: Voyeaizdat), 29-30.

28

oruzhiye

i efo

Table 3

*a

=-yo

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00.8m as 0n.oVol.
46 No.
t 4,of"a75.ftam
p.
w0No

29

am wow4

nw

efns,

Anureyev,

also

writing

passive means of radar

in

making

1971, expanded the discussion of various


He

noted that

false targets

such as

those with coverings of metallized plastic or metal screens could imitate


the radar characteristics of ballistic missile

RVs.e2 He

also discussed

tethered dipoles (privaznye dipoli): They would be released by the RV but


not separate completely
height.8 4
problem

If true,

from

this is

associated

with

it,

and

thus

an interesting

endo-atmoseric

follow

the

RV

to

a low

way to surmount the weight


penetration

aids. Anureyev,

however, did not address the real technical issue here: From what type of
heat

resistant

Anureyev went

and

flexible

on to

kilometers in

length."

carry

kilogram

200

would

such

tethers

be made?

estimate that the space covered by a cloud of false

targets would be "several

materials

tens of

kilometers in

diameter and

In addition, he noted that each U.S.


container

carrying

up

to

one

over 100

ICBM could

million dipole

reflectors,*5

In

summarizing

these assessments,

it is clear

exception, they were not highly technical in nature.


concerned with
deployed,

that, with

Rather,

one

they were

how and when the passive means of radar masking would be

and--most

importantly-with

the

beneficial

impact

such

deployments would have on the performance capability of re-entry vehicles


in terms of enhancing their
With respect
points

to the

addressed

explaining

the

all

probability

of

penetrating

system.

issues outlined above, these assessments at various


four.

operational

The

clear

bias,

characteristics

however,
of

as

toward

passive

radar

masking--toward explaining how such masking worked (Issue 3).

30

I
2.1.3.2

Active Means
Sources
Books

Journal Articles

The first substantive discussions of active radar masking


1968-two

years

after

the

initial

technology involved in perfecting


(for example,

anti-radar homing

assessment

many active

appeared in

of passive means.

systems of

The

radar masking

missiles) was complex; and at least one

Soviet author, writing in 1968, recognized this fact. He noted that the
use of

active methods was a "radical measure."86

He went on to mention

two active means: (1) the DRADs anti-radar missile; and (2) false targets
equipped with

radar jammers.

The

DRADs (Degradation

of Radar Defense

Systems) missile was in fact one of the ABRES R&D efforts at that time."4
The false

targets the

author described

were quite exotic as each would

have its own solid fuel engine. Such false

targets would

operate in the

following manner:
(i)

separate from RV, fly ahead of it;

(ii)

false target next determines operating frequency or


frequency ranges of B

(iii)
Implicit

in

search radars;

false targets then jam radars."8


this

Explicit, however,

discussion
was

only

is
an

good

amount

explanation

of

of

high technology.

how

that umentioned

technology would be utilized to enhance the EM penetration capability of


'

I
I

an ICBM.

31

Anureyev, in 1971, devoted roughly equal


meens

of

radar

masking.

making, he made the


referring to
still

At

beginning

the

curious claim

maneuvering RVs and

that since

particular

coumtermeasures--for
implication was

that delays

of

flawed

as

the

(in particular

"designated less complex

passive

anti-rocket

or

defense

active
systems.""

radio
The

in U.S. re-entry vehicle R&D were providing

the impetus for research into penetration aids.


appears

of his section on radar


U.S. RVs

U.S. had

means

overcoming

active and passive

Vs with radar absorbing coatings) were

in a "developmental stage," the

mechaniims--in

space to

U.S.

Such reasoning, however,

penaids program had a development history-

which stretched back to the early 1960s.


Anurevev discussed three active means.
above (that

is, the

DRADs missile and false targets equipped with radar

jammers); the third was a high


attempt to

The first two were those noted

explain the

altitude nuclear

atmospheric ionization

nuclear explosion; rather, he focused on


radio and radar blackout.

processes triggered by a

the result

of such explosions:

height,

and

cited

two

one megaton

explosion

at

detection stations (operating at


Ivanov also

referred to

100-200
meter

several active

discussed the table from the journal


listing on pages 27 above).
active systems.

examples

of high

The first, a one megaton detonation at 60

explosions.

kilometers, blinded the BMD radar stations for five


a

He did not

He noted that the duration of the blackout was

a function of the detonation


altitude nuclear

explosion.

minutes; the second,

kilometers,

blinded

wavelengths)
means of

for

long-range

17 minutes.

radar masking when he

Svace/Aeronautics (see

table 2 and

One should note, however, how he treated the

The active ECls were placed in his secondary listing and

32

the

reference

to

another

blackout--was dropped.

Iactions
11974,

One

means

should not

in the sources examined for

active

masking--nuclear

radar

make too

much of

this, but his

consistent with a trend apparent in the 1970s.

were

tendency to

of

this

study,

there

was

a pronounced

refer only to "false targets" (making no distinction between

passive and active means), and even then the discussions were very brief.
The

presented

analysis

in

relevant to the above point.


1977, were

Jnoted

Tekhnika i vooruzhenime articles is

two

which appeared

The articles,

Both

radar masking.

articles, in

discussing MIRI',

in passing that false targets were released along with the warheads

(the 1971 article specifically mentioning wire dipoles).' 2

Ifalse

targets,

both articles

noted the utility

for the

of multiple warhead

RVs

targets."' 2
(i)

for a

RV.

of

in a negative fashion, and

passive

radar masking: radar

The 1971 article stressed that the use

complicated
reduction in

the

work

of

the

EM

radar and

the "too many and expensive false

"spherical blunting"

Fact:

means

In discussing

The 1977 article reasoned in the following way:

1braking
(ii)

described them

of another

absorptive coatings

therefore allowed

in 1971 and

devoted entirely to re-entry vehicles.' 1 There was no mention

of active means of

In

of

the

RV's

tip

assists in

RV upon atmospheric re-entry;

turn,

this

allows

thickness of RV heat shield to be

reduced;
(iii)

However, (i) above also "dowsks" the


screens;

I
I
I

After about

33

RV

on

BMD

radar

(iv)

This demasking "forces [vynuzhdaet] the use" of


special materials which absorb radiation;

(v)

The spherical blunting, while reducing heat shield


weight, not

only demasks

RV but also increases time it

spends "in field of view of means of PRO;"


(vi)

Therefore, it

is

"required" that "in

certain cases"

be masked with the aid of false targets.


The

critical

available

link

in

this

lightweight

temperatures--in

analysis

thermal

other

words,

is

which

lightweight

could

If one had

withstand

high

ablative coatings, then the

need for "spherical blunting" of the RV's tip


Soviets apparently

the heat shield.

shielding

the RV

would be

eliminated.

The

experienced great difficulty in making the transition

from heavy heat shields to ablative coatings."5


On the whole, the Soviet assessments
on

operational

characteristics,

that

addition, as the 1970s progressed, Soviet


attention to this technology area.

of active
is,

Issue

radar masking focused

military writers

Treaty made

the number

In addition,

MIRV--which resulted

penetration

aids)

Finally, and related to the first reason, if

were following the U.S.

Most obviously, the

in a huge

of Soviet and U.S. warheads--made the protection

of each warhead (via various


issue.

devoted less

BMD penetration (via both passive and active radar

masking) less of an issue.


increase in

In

One can adduce three reasons for this

lack of interest in active radar masking technology.


1972 ABM

3 was addressed.

much

less important

the Soviet assessors

aerospace trade press, then the decline in Soviet

discussions of penetration aids technology after 1974 was not surprising:


Interest in and trade press

coverage

34

of

such

technology

in

the U.S.

I.
dropped significantly

in the

interest: Two recent American

Ideployed
2.1.4

latter part of the 1970s.


sources

claim

that

the

A final note of
USSR

has never

pen-aids on any of its ICBMs.06,*'

Hardening
Sources
Journal Articles

Books

The year

1971 marked a major breakpoint in the discussions concerning

re-entry vehicle hardening.

this year, the assessments were

Prior to

extensive, technical in nature, and concerned with explaining the effects


*

produced on a RV by the

explosion

of

"nuclear tipped anti-rocket."

After 1971, only brief references were made to continuing U.S. work on RV
hardening. One surmises that the change in Soviet assessments was induced
by the 1972 ABM Treaty.

With the treaty in force, the primr" reason for

hardening--the existence

of nuclear-tipped

anti-rockets--wa

virtually

eliminated.
The first assessments of hardening appeared in 1969 and were concerned

with explaining

both

physical principles

U.S.

advances

in hardening

technology and the

underlying the interaction between a RVa electronic

oapNets and the various

types

of

produoed

radiation

by

a nuclear

!
explosion.

one

author noted

that

optics/laser firing mechanism for its

the
RVs

resistance to electro-agnetic pulses (3MP).


V

i
I

that shielding the entire RV to enhance its

35

U.S.
to

working on a fiber

increase

the mechanism's

The me author explained


resistance to

EP was "used

almost

not

shielding

at

of

all"

because

various

such

shielding

components

within

was

the

too heavy. Separate

RV, however,

was

possibility."9

Another author, writing in the same year, focused on the vulnerability


of semi-conductor devices utilized in RVs.
were "one
radio

order of

tubes,

followed

magnitude less

capacitors,

this

with

resistant to

resistors

good

He claimed that

[and]

description

nuclear radiation than

induction

article

was

somewhat

curious

for

ooils."00

He

of why semiconductors are so

vulnerable to the current and voltage pulses induced


The

such devices

what

virtually no references to what could be done

it

in them

by EMP.10'

omitted:

There were

to counter

the effects of

nuclear explosions (an increase in RV shielding was again rejected due to


the weight increase that
article could

be that

would

result).

the less

Indeed,

the

message

advanced electronic technologies--tubes

and the like--were the proper ones to utilize in RVs.

time, the

of this

Given

that at the

state-of-the-art in Soviet electronics was far from perfecting

semi-conductor technology (vacuum tubes were in fact still


this assessment

of U.S.

widely used),

technology may have been biased by the state of

Soviet technology.
A book

published in

altitude nuclear

1971 devotes

explosions on

an

RV

from

such

to the

re-entry vehicles.

with the earlier articles, there was


protected

a chapter

almost

effects.

no

effects of high

In a vein consistent

discussion

Rather,

the

of

emphasis

how one
ws on

understanding how the radiation incident upon the RV was conducted inward
and what

the effects

were of such conduction.

well informed and quite instructive.

The

36

This discussion was very

authors

of

this

book first

I.
discussed how

soft x-rays

effect an RV.

was absorbed in the

RV's

outer

thermal

which

in

shielding

destruction of the RV.0*2


neutron flux

incident on

layers;

turn

The

led

They noted that such radiation


this

to

authors then

a re-entry

absorption

degraded the

thermal loading

and

examined the problem of a

vehicle.

They stated that in this

case, it was not so much the RV electronics which were vulnerable


"nuclear charge"

itself.10 3

the

as the

The authors also noted that the kill radius

(for both soft x-rays and neutrons) of an anti-rocket with a one megaton
warhead was nearly 2 kilometers. 1 04
Beginning partially

in 1971 and totally thereafter, the references to

U.S. R&D on hardening technology were very brief


to explain

and no

effort was made

how the

radiation produced by nuclear explosions generated a

need for hardening.

The following is representative of these references:

Basically, all research in the field of the defense of nosecones from


nuclear explosions is directed most of all at ensuring the shielding
of

the

radioelectronic

apparatus,

[kontrol'] instruments of the


and x-ray radiation.' 0 5
In sum
of

U.S.

guidance and control

Issue

vehicle
1--that

hardening
is,

were

primarily

2.1.5

Design/Shape
Sources
Books

I
I

concerned

with

the basic physical principles behind the

of nuclear explosions on RVs were discussed.

Ieffects

the

and in terms of the four issues posited above, the assessments


re-entry

addressing

(and]

nosecone from electromagnetic impulses

Journal Articles

37

The discussions of the design and


were few

and brief in nature.

changing emphasis of U.S.

shape of

U.S. re-entry vehicles

The assessments did reflect, however, the

research

in

this

area

of

re-entry vehicle

technology.
Two authors,
context

of

writing prior

how

cross-section.

that

to 1972,

design

That is,

discussed RV design only in the

affected

the

re-entry vehicle

RV' s

effective

design was considered in the

context of how it could maximize the "radar masking" capabilities


RV.

Writing in

radar

of the

1966, one author noted that the optimal nosecone design

was a "pointed" one since such

design

would

reduce

the

RV's radar

cross-section.10 6 Implicit in this author's discussion was the assumption


that RV

design

penetrating

could

be

manipulated

ballistic

missile

explicitly linked his discussion


overcoming an

stated

that

advantageous for manned

travel

1 07

form with
while

through

Five

the

probability of

years later, Anureyev

design with

anti-rocket defense system."

He

enhance

defense.
of RV

had a "blunting" (prituplennsva)


shaped."

to

the "possibility of

He contrasted an RV which

one which

blunting
space,

was more "sharply.

form
such

was

considered

form

on

a RV

led--upon atmospheric re-entry--to the creation of an "intensive track of


ionized air" behind the RV.
would be

detected by

Such a

track was

a BMD radar station.

a "demasking

sign" which

In addition, he noted that a

"more sharply shaped RV is conducive to radar masking. " 1e e


It

is not surprising that both authors--writing prior to the

Treaty--focused on

the manipulation

the RV's radar signature.

During

1972 ABM

of RV design as a means to minimize


the late
38

1960s, the

emphasis in the

,o

U.S. re-entry

vehicle R&D

EMD system would be


probabilities

were

penetrated
sought

in

by
a

reflected a

after

of

change in

1974,

Jenhancing

U.S.

RV

RV.

of

Enhanced penetration

ways--one

of

which

was

terminal maneuver
As

changes

placed equal
in

design

endo-atmospheric

11977,

now

(or at

to

Not

in

the

U.S.

and

addition

has

to

the

the

placed

surprisingly,

the

criteria, in

which governed U.S. re-entry vehicle

the

in terminal

earlier

stress on

intercept, the

emphasis on utilizing

dynamical
on

focused on both

to DM1D

least substantial)

minimize

discussed several

after 1972

with the shifting

improvements

decrease vulnerability

maneuvering)

guidance apparatus.

in

appeared

was consistent

capabilities

result,

which

Throughout the 1970s and particularly

vehicle R&D

manipulating RV design to
U.S. has

given

designs

emphasis which

re-entry

accuracy.t0
I*

number

focus of the U.S. research effort.


]

to enhance the probability that a

manipulation of warhead design.


The one assessment

I1

effort was

RV's

Soviet

loading

(due to

delicate

terminal

author,

writing in

addition to concern over BMD,

design

considerations.

He noted

that RV designs should ensure: minimal drag effects, the minimal possible

effect of heat flows on the RV's internal apparatus, the


"maximal shocks"

during maneuvers, and also the "firm(ness of the RV] to

the influences of the explosions of


was

EN

still

Iconsiderations

evident,

but

it

anti-rockets."116
was

now

I
I
I

purpose.:

The concern with

seen as only one of several

which guided U.S. R&D into re-entry vehicle design.

The assessments of U.S. re-entry vehicle design and


two

withstanding of

to describe

this

shape clearly had

technology and to assess how it would

39

influence the performance capabilities of U.S. RVs.

to the

With respect

four issues, these assessments addressed the second and the fourth.

2.1.6

Guidance System
Sources
Books

Journal Articles

Encyclopedia Entry

assessments of

divide Soviet

It is useful to

guidance system technology into two sections:


inertial

guidance

technology.

The former

descriptive; in
inertial systems.
matter.

systems

and

were

short, the
Terminal

assessments which examined

which analyzed terminal guidance

those

universally

brief

Soviets showed
guidance

U.S. re-entry vehicle

in

nature

and highly

little interest in assessing

technology

was,

however, another

As was noted in section 2.1.1.4 above, and as will be discussed

below, the discussions of terminal

guidance

were

several

of

the best

encountered in preparing this study."'


The most extensive description of an inertial guidance system appeared
in 1977.

The author noted

consisted of
automatic

"an inertial

orientation,

an

transformer-amplifying unit,

that

nosecone

system for
electronic

system "usually"

measuring angular coordinates and


digital

[and] guidanoe

other authors of the Minutemen II and Poseidon


even less.

guidance

computer

organs.""'

(ETsVM),

Descriptions by

C3 guidance

system said

For both system, the only element of the guidance apparatus

discussed was the digital electronic computer.

In

neither case

even mentioned that the guidance systems were inertial.1'

40

mas it

I:
1The

first

Soviet

discussion

technology appeared in 1974.


research to

of

At

with

more

track consisted of guidance


the calculation

of the

active flight, but


;

The

layers. "114

first

its

this

below);

guidance system--most
vehicle (MERV)

the

flights.11

program which

This

author,

constructed with

into

was

an

atmosphere's dense

the

apparent

part of

reference to the

the Mk12A

RV program

second was a clear allusion to a terminal

probably

program apparently utilized

"new on-board

not only in the period of its

entry

statement

creating

were "being

systems which

guidance system improvements which were a


(more on

that U.S.

measuring elements." The second

sensitive

with

by

systems"

rocket's guidance

also

noted

was

it

accuracy was proceeding along two tracks. The

increase ICBM

systems

advances in U.S. guidance

time,

this

first involved "improving existing


guidance

further

to

the

had been

terminal

maneuvering

ballistic re-entry

active since
sensors

however,

in

appeared

somewhat as the first serious U.S. R&D effort

1966.115

several

The !.BRV

of

its test

to be "jumping the gun"

which focused

on terminal

guidance did not begin until 1975-6.117


With

guidance

terminal

performance capabilities,

systems,

but

much

there
greater

was

some

discussion

attention

was

of

devoted to

explaining

worked."$

As

already

analyses were informative and understandable.

To

say

imply that

Iin

how

the

technology

this

is

not to

these assesments touched on all the critical issues involved

the developient of
critical

noted, these

technology

terminal guidance
area

which

technology.

reoeived

virtually

guidance system miniaturization.

Only one

issue,

only in passing"."1

and even

then

it

wo

41

One example
no

Soviet source

attention

of a
is

mentioned this

Miniaturization of

various guidance system components was

terminal guidance
are not

research program
and if

large objects,

terminal guidance

major

hurdle

had to overcome.

individual RVs

which

the U.S.

Re-entry vehicles

are to

be equipped with

equipment, then it is essential to make that equipment

as small as possible so

as

not

to

force

reductions--for

example, in

warhead size. 12 0
For

inertial

guidance

systems,

little

effort

was

made to assess

performance capabilities or to explain how such systems operated. This is


surprising given
deployed in

that the only new guidance technology the U.S. actually

the 1970s

accompanied the

was the

guidance system which

Mk12A re-entry vehicle. Perhaps this technology area was

deemed too sensitive

for

open

analogous

advances

in

Soviet

beginning

with

deployment

1975;121 or

improved inertial

the

source

assessment
vehicle

re-entry
of

their

fourth

due

to

guidance

either: (1)
technology

generation

IC&Ms in

(2) the hard target kill capability which the Ll2A RV would

possess. 122
(Oerall, the Soviet assessments of U.S. inertial guidance were clearly
biased toward

addressing Issue

2 of the four posed above--that is, what

were the technical characteristics of this


terminal guidance

technology?

With respect to

system, the Soviet assessments were more detailed and

oriented to addressing two

issues: how

did this

technology work (Issue

3), and what were its performance capabilities (Issue 4).

2.2

Immet of RV Technology on Ballistic Missile Defense Systems't"


As will

be discussed

this study the Soviet

below, throughout much of the period covered by

military perceived

42

the main

impetus driving U.S.

Ire-entry

vehicle R&D as the need to increase the possibility that a given

RV would penetrate a BMD system.

various penetration

deployment of

The

aids and to a lesser extent the development of multiple warhead RVs posed
a critical

problem: discrimination.'

24

How did one

select a re-entry

vehicle from a cluster of hundreds or thousands of penaids?

for action

seen in

technology

areas:

researching this
computer

computer technology

emphasis on

computers capable of

digital
emphasis.

systems.

writings

(for example,

jbetter understanding of
interaction

between

detection

The

single focus: the need to employ

on detection
on

radar

technology

improving

and

BM)

had

a dual

system detection

infrared) and also on gaining a

the basic physical


re-entry

technology.

acquisition and processing--that is,

There was a stress both

capabilities

and

had a

rapid data

The

The writers focused on two

study.

systems

most explicit calls

of the

which addressed this issue presented several

The writings

vehicle

processes which

governed the

(or penetration aid) and the

atmosphere as the RV (or penetration aid) approached its target.


Before addressing the particular technology areas, it is
understand how

1abo-e
I

important to

Soviet military writers perceived the threat posed by the

mentioned advances in

RV technology.

Writing in

1968, one author

noted:
the destruction of a considerable mass of ballistic missiles at the
initial (primarily active) segment of the trajectory facilitates
the conditions for intercepting the warheads at the terminal
segment of the trajectory and will not require the solution of a
since the release of dumIy warheads
difficult problem--seleation,
is technically feasible only at the end of the active section or at
the start of the passive section [of the flight]."$U

I
I

4
43

Ostensibly, this writer was discussing trends in U.S. BMD.


be drawn for Soviet iBMD, however,
this particular

would not

journal (PVO Herald).

be lost

The lesson to

on the

Four months earlier, the readers

of this same journal had been told that the U.S. was planning
large numbers

of false

targets.'26

exo-atmospheric or

to utilize

The lesson was clear: To avoid the

problem of "selection" and hence maintain the effectiveness


system, either

readers of

of one's BMD

perhaps even space-based means of BMD

had to be considered along with endo-atmospheric/terminal defenses.


Anureyev, writing in 1971,
improvements in

advocated a

less radical

U.S. RV and pen-aids technology.

response to the

Anureyev noted that at

the present time a "universal means" of identifying RVs "does not exist,"
and therefore

it was necessary to combine several identification methods

in order to increase
targets.12 7 ,12

the

He went

probability

of

detecting

RV

among false

on to conclude that the optimal BEM system was

that which obtained the greatest quantity of data about the

targets in a

time which would give the possibility of taking measures for striking the
incoming RVs.129
possible call

Thus,

in the

course of

action-from Anureyev--to

and

an

explicit

meet that same threat.

drawing conclusions on the basis of two data


two calls

one another.
as an

one had

both a

for changes in force structure to counter the threat posed

by a proliferation of targets

that the

three years,

call

for technological

While one should avoid

points, it

is worth noting

for action did not conflict and in fact complemented

If for nothing else, one should take these calls for action

indicator of the seriousness with which the Soviet military viewed

the threat posed by radar making (passive and active) and MIRV.

44

In
2.2.1

Detection Technology

The need for improvements in radar technology w.as


as 1968.

recognized as early

One author, writing in that year, noted that as the U.S. began

to utilize radar absorbing materials on its RVs, it would be necessary to


increase the

Ion

radiating power

of BM) radars*130

the multiplicity of targets than

conceal

itself,

stated

that DMD

on the
radar

Anureyev, focusing more

ability of one
stations

target to

needed to have high

resolving power in order to obtain information on all the targets.131


Anureyev, also presented a technical analysis
which a BD

system could

attempt to

of the various ways in

detect an incoming RV.

Before

undertaking his analysis, he noted that the


examination of the characteristics
of targets
is presently
considered to be of paramount [vazhneyshiyl importance since the
radiation and reflection of energy and also the interactions with
the surroundings depend on exactly the basic form of these
characteristics.3"2
Here, he made a basic point: Before investing heavily in R& for
various detection methods (radar, IR, etc.), one should understand
what it is one expects to detect. Anureyev's use of the phrase
"paramount importance" is suggestive of the importance he attached to

this kind of basic research.

Anureyev next outlined the various

possible detection methods. His analysis proceeded in the following


order:
i)

radar detection;

(ii)
detection by IR means;
(iii) detection by identifying an object's electromagnetic

i
I

45

signature (this detection to be carried out by

"'special!" radar

stations);
(iv) detection by measuring doppler shift;
(v)

detection of RVs by examining the composition of their

plasma wake.
He noted

that the

first two

ensure

time and therefore did not

"Even" the

methods required

a "very large" amount of


the target."'3

of

timely detection

fifth method, he concluded, did "not answer the contemporary

demands of ensuring the

dependable

identification"

RVs.

of

Anureyev

finished by noting that "work on the modernization of already operational


methods [of detection] and the development of new

methods is continuing"

and foreign countries were allocating large sums for such research. 1

In

the context of the analysis he presented, these words appeared to present


a call

for action.

It was a call not for changes in force structure or

doctrine, but for technological action: both at the theoretical (that is,
basic research) and applied levels (that is, utilizing the results of the
basic research to enhance fED detection capabilities).

2.2.2

Computer Technolog,

Several authors were unambiguous in noting


computer hardware

of radar

stations by

manetvering RVs and, in particular, of


author

noted

"primarily

to

information to

that
reduce

the

a minimum."

were necessary which would

the appearance

penetration aids.

timely detection

time

spent

on

the demands

of

obtaining

distant
and

placed on the

of multiple and
In

1971, one

targets

meant

processing radar

In order to obtain this "minimum," oomputers


not only

process the

46

radar data

input, but

Ialso

analyze

the data,

and determine

aircraft, missile or artificial


another author
electronic

computer

acquisition,

which

tracking

and

warheads

importance

of

of

an

the

processing system. 1 36

ICBM

allowed

for

rapid,

interception.

In

Writing

in 1969,

target

"whether or

not they are

targets."

redundancy

built

into

He went on to note the

the

Redundancy was critical


to

speed

when several

false

speed"

high

addition,

or

an

Tacdar's

information

because of

the need to

incoming

ICBM strike.

Thus, if one system failed there must be a backup ready to replace it


immediately.

I
I
I

I
I
I
I
47

5s

the U.S. TacMar BM radar was connected to an

respond with "exceptionally high

of the target "be it an

earth satellite."

targets were detected this computer determined


the

noted that

the type

__

3.

I3.1

SLMtARY AND OONCLUSIONS

The Nature of the Soviet Military's Technology Assessment Process


Before sumarizing

the results

of the

paper's second section, it is

useful to look more closely at the issues utilized to probe the nature of
the technology

assessment process of the Soviet military. For reference,

I will again list the four issues:

Issue 1:

Do the discussions focus on the basic physics of the RV system?

Issue 2:

Is the focus simply on describing the components of the system?

Issue 3:

Is the focus on the system's operational characteristics?

Issue 4:

Do the discussions focus on the capabilities of the system?

Several

examples

disaggregating the

will

demonstrate

Soviet assessments

the

in this

can ask why the Soviet military would structure


technology
*

in

such

way

that

Ij

manner.

as

of

As a start, one

its assessments

of U.S.
One

poorly understood within

This lack of understanding could very

well arise because the military oommmity had not yet mastered the Soviet
counterpart to

this U.S.

technology.

In a

pedagogical sense, too, it

would make most sense for Soviet military assessors


As any

utility

Issue 1 was primarily addressed.

possibility is that a given U.S. technology


the Soviet military establishment.

analytic

teacher knows,

to address

Issue 1.

the best way to educate your students is to start


48

from first principles.


background

of

Space considerations

the

Soviet

military,

and the

however,

uneven educational

might

deter

assessors from structuring their assessments in this manner.


the easiest

one for

a Soviet

military analyst

military

Issue

2 is

to address. Assessments

which focus on this issue are descriptive in nature.

The military writer

need not be a scientist or physicist to write at this level; in addition,


he need not be given great amounts of possibly classified
western weapons

systems.

His job

information on

is to describe the nuts and bolts of

the technology, its technical characteristics.

This is a relatively easy

task.
The third
to address.
military's

issue is

the most obvious one for a Soviet military writer

Clearly,

these

response

to

assessments

U.S.

play

technological

assessments explain how a given technological


certainly the

best way

for others

in the

role

in

the Soviet

innovation;

innovation works,

when

the

this is

Soviet military community to

formulate a response to the U.S. technological challenge.


It is more difficult to understand what might
analyst to
mind.

lead a

Soviet military

address only Issue 4. One possibility, however, does come to

Issue

4 deals

capabilities of

with

outcomes,

specific technologies.

addresses when he wants to know:


this technology?"

is,

This

"what is

with

is the

the performance
issue an assessor

the military

significance of

Given this, an assessor interested in developing worst

case scenarios or playing for


structuring his

that

propaganda

assessment about

objective technical facts

advantage

Issue 4.

addressed

by

He

Issues

would

benefit from

has moved away from the


2

and

to

the more

subjective analysis of performance capabilities raised by Issue 4.1"'

49

I' A

IIt
1

is

somewhat of

an oversimplification,

but one

can summarize the

above as follows:

*Issue I is the most logical one (in a pedagogical sense) for a Soviet
military writer to address;

*Issue 2 is
the easiest one (ina practical sense) to
i

address;
*Issue 3 is

the most obvious one (in a security sense) to

address;

*Issue 4 is the most tempting one (in a propaganda and worst

case scenario sense) to address.

With

these

considerations

in

hand,

one can proceed to analyze the

Soviet military's technology assessment process as

respect

to U.S.

re-entry vehicle

Table 4 summarizes the results of


from

the

table--and

not

at

all

technology

Part 2.

What

it has

over the past 20 years.


is immediately obvious

surprising--is that the overwhelming

majority of the assessments were structured to address


obvious one

operated with

Issue 3-the most

to consider from a security point of view, and the one which

best equips the Soviet military community to formulate a response to U.S.


technological innovation. The three technology areas (MRVs, hardening and
inertial guidance) where the bulk of Soviet assessments did not emphasize
operational characteristics can plausibly be explained as anomalous.

I
I
I
I

50

Table 4: Categorization of Soviet Military Assessments


Key:

X = some assessments in this category

X.X = majority of assessments in this category


Date of
Initial
Soviet
Assessment

Technology

Mid-1960s

MRV

1966

Passive
Radar
Masking

1966

Design/

Physical
Principles
Involved

Technical
Characteristics

Operational
Characteristics

Performance
Capability
XX

XX

Shape
1968

MIRV

1968

Inertial
Guidance

XX

1968

Active
Radar
Masking

1968

Maneuvering

XX

XX

RVs
1969

Hardening

1971

Heatshields

1973-4

Ablative
Coatings
Terminal
Guidance

1974
1977

XX

X
X

Maneuvering,
Terminally
Guided RVs

Issue 1
Focus on
basic
physics
of RV

Issue 2
Focus on
describing
components
and inatrumentation?

51

V.
XX

XX

Issue 3
Focus on
system's
operational
and system
characteristics?

Issue 4
Focus on
system's
capability
and military
significance?

1
With respect

1likely

to MRVs,

this study--with

its 1965 starting date--most

missed the bulk of Soviet assessments concerning

For hardening

this technology.

technology, th. emphasis I found on physical principles is

quite possibly due to

the nature

of my data base:

Three of

the seven

sources were books (where there is sufficient space for consideration of


"first principles").

As for inertial guidance, I

several

this

times

that

technology's

MKI.2's hard target kill capability)

have already suggested

sensitive

may have

nature (that is, the

resulted

in

the Soviet

military adopting a "hands off" approach to assessments of this


technology in the open military press.
The

table has

several

other interesting features.

Issue 2--the

"easiest" one to address--is in fact utilized most often: The assessments


for nine of the twelve technology areas touch upon this issue. The table

also shows an interesting--and

threat posed

by a given U.S.

strong--correlation between

technological innovation and the "richness"

of the Soviet assessments ("richness" being defined as

address at

least three

of the

four issues).

technology areas--passive radar masking,

Imaneuvering,

terminally guided RVs--meet

can be argued
coatings

being

that
the

three

of these

exception)

were

MIRV,

ablative

the "richness"

four

I52
I

criterion.

It

those re-entry vehicle

felt most threatened

Passive radar masking-that

penetration aids-and MIRVs, in the space of

the Soviet

coatings, and

technology areas (ablative

precisely

by over the 20 year period of this study.'

assessments which

The assessments in four

technological innovations which the Soviet military

Iis,

the level of

a few

years, increased

BM detection and tracking target set by at least four orders

of magnitude.

Maneuvering,

Pershing II--have
the European

terminally

put important

part of

the USSR

guided

RVs--specifically, the

control nodes and nuclear facilities in


(including Moscow

if one

is to believe

Soviet military writers) at risk to short time-of-flight, highly accurate


strikes.
In sum,
military's

what

the

technology

achieving results.
optimized

to

table

assessment

In this

allow

the

technological innovation.
in

the

middle

two

says

process

sense,

Soviet

about

results

military

Thus, the great

columns

--which

the
is

nature
that

means
to

to

American

(Issues 1 and 4) are


assessments.

technological

bulk of

lower

focused on

assessments are
quickly to U.S.

the assessments fall

The two outer columns

priority

in

the Soviet

The low priority, however, makes sense if the goal of these

approach--or
technical

of the

provided

Issue

detail

with

Soviet response

to U.S.

When either Issue 1--with its building block,

and

4--where
more

on

performance capability--is addressed alone,


not be

is

requires to formulate a

innovation.

clearly accorded

technological innovation.

objective

the Soviet

are oriented toward providing the

assessments is to maximize the rapidity

pedagogical

the

respond

Soviet military with the tools and information it


response

it

of

the

kind

of

less

subjective
the military

is

placed on

evaluations

of

conmmity will

information it needs to formulate

adequate responses to U.S. technological advances.

53

emphasis

3.2.

Soviet

Military

Perceptions

of

Main

Direction(s)

U1.S. RV

in

Develorment
In

attempting

direction(s)

in

U.S.

to

analyze

re-entry

Soviet

vehicle

perceptions
technology,

of
the

the

main

following

chronology of Soviet statements on the topic is helpful:


1968

Improving capability to overcome antimissiles constitutes


"one of main trends" in modernization of missile systems

1971

Penetration of ABM; more reliable hit probability on area


targets; higher hit probability on hard, point targets

1971

"Basic direction:"

1971

Development of maneuvering, multiply charged nosecones and


creation of other means in order to overcome PRO system

1971

Creation of multiplecharge RVs in order to:


(1) facilitate penetration of PRO; (2) enhance
effectiveness of the rocket's actions at the target;
allow one rocket to strike several targets

means for overcoming PRO systems

(3)

1972

Proper accuracy to
means for overcoming
nuclear strike

1972

Creation of multiplecharge RVs is "one of the leading


directions" in ICBM development in U.S.; "vast program of
work underway" to increase accuracy of MIRV guidance
system; terminal guidance as way to increase strike accuracy

1974

Development of "maneuvering, multiple-charge RVs" and other


means for overcoming PRO

1977

Improve maneuverability; perfect guidance systems; decrease


radar profile of RVs; harden RV against effects of M;
equip RV. with active BCls.''

hit designated targets; need to have


PRO; need to withstand opponent's

I
All the
4

above

listings

preserve

order

given

above?

For

by

the respective

authors.
What

can

one

conclude

from

consistently perceived--through

I
I

the

the

one,

the

Soviets

1971-the need to enhance BND penetration

54

capability as the prime driver behind U.S. re-entry vehicle R&D.


instances--1971, 1972 (twice) and
perceived to be impelling

1977--accuracy improvements

re-entry vehicle research.140

terms, one saw a consistent Soviet


driving

force behind

emphasis

This

U.S. RV research.

down--but not eliminated--by 1977.


perceived accuracy

on BND

As

not,

were also

Thus, in broad

penetration

emphasis

as a

was played

the 1970s progress, the Soviets

improvements as gaining in importance.

emphasis on accuracy did

In four

however, come at

The increased

the expense

of the

elimination of the BED penetration priority; both were present.


The

critical

question to

ask

is how

perceptions correlated with changes in emphasis


vehicle R&D work.
good.

The short

these

changes

in actual

in Soviet

U.S. re-entry

answer is that the correlation is pretty

The sole emphasis on EMD penetration in the 1968 assessment is not

entirely accurate, but is understandable, given that an extensive debate


in the U.S. press over the merits of MIRV as a BMD penetration technology
versus MIRV

as a target coverage/counterforce

until 1967.141
capabilities,

Thus, it is not surprising that, in terms of performance


MIRV

was

perceived

re-entry vehicles (MRVs).


in

the

U.S.

technology did not occur

for

as

direct

follow on to multiple

One should also recall that the only rationale

developing

MRVs

probabilities. The 1977 assessment,

was
with

to
its

enhance
dual

END

focus

penetration
on seemingly

incompatible technologies (maneuverability and accuracy improvements), is


correct. One western souroe (Aviation Week

the Soviets

were sure

& Sace

Technology--a source

to be reading) noted in 1976 that the emphasis in

the ABS program "has switched to stress evasion (i.e., maneuverability)


without sacrificing any accuracy achievable with the Mk 12." 1 4 2

55

I
3.3

Nonrecognition/Recognition of Need for Tradeoffs

Table

is

chronological

listing of those trade-offs which were

either explicitly recognized within


table is

a given

assessment or

ignored. The

admittedly of limited utility, but it does serve to reinforce a

point which became evident as this paper was prepared: These assessments,
for

the

most

part,

writer--if he had
easily have

were

been

not worst case analyses. The Soviet military

writing

converted nearly

from

all the

was noted above, one can plausibly

would have
focused

a greater

on

question "how

does this

argue that

the

concerned

with

explaining

majority

of

how

the
a

a Soviet

assesssing performance capabilities.

I
I
i

56

those

As

military writer

which

answered

the

In this context, it is worth

assessments

given

I
I
I
I
I

than

technology work?"

that

case perspective--could

worst case" those assessments which

capabilities

jrecalling

worst

"yes's" in Table 5 to "no's."

incentive "to

performance

examined

technology

worked

were more
than with

Table 5
Year
1969

Trade-Off Involved

Recognized?

Shielding RV from EMP vs increase in

Yes

RV weight required by such shielding


1971a

Terminal RV maneuvers vs increase in

Yes

time spent in "field of view" of BMD


due to such maneuvers
1971b

False targets which follow RV through

No

dense layers of atmosphere vs increased


weight of such false targets

Increase in number of pen-aids carried

No

by bus vs decrease in number of RVs on bus

1977

Utilizing aerodynamic principles to execute

Yes

terminal maneuvers instead of propulsion


system due to severe size constraints on RV
1978

Terminal maneuvers producing some degradation

Yes

in terminal accuracy
1983

In order to increase Pershing II range most

Yes

likely need to replace RADAG guidance system


with inertial system
Sources:

1969--Chuprin (1969,
51) and
F. Fedorov
(1969,
42);
1971a--Anureev (1971, 58); 1971b--Ivanov (1971, 29-30);
1977--Aleksandrov (1977,
47);
1978--Sovetskaya Vorenna
(1978; Vol. 5, 119); 1983--Platanov (1983,
Entsikloediy
36).

57

13.4

Final Remarks

3.4.1

The

Chanxins

Nature

of

the

Soviet

Military's

Technology

Assessments
The question to ask is not whether Soviet assessments of U.S. re-entry

Ivehicle

technology have changed over the past 18

improvement are virtually inevitable.

years. Some

The critical question, however, is

one of degree: How much have the assessments improved?

jquestion, it
technology

is important

being

to keep

assessed by

competently

the

complex

terminally guided RV. The


the

1
I

in mind

the

In answering this

that the

Soviet

complexity of the

military

has

increased

dramatically over the past two decades. It is one thing to understand the
technology of mutiple re-entry

change and

Soviet

military

vehicles; it

technology

technological advance?

involved

first question

assessments
The

is quite

have

answer is

in,

to ask,
kept

yes; in

another to assess
say, a maneuvering,

therefore, is whether

up with the rapid pace of


fact, they

have done a

little better than simply "keeping up."

As noted earlier, several of the

best assessments were those which dealt

with a

maneuvering, terminally
for improvement.

guided RVe.

very complex technology:

There is still,

however, great room

As this report has shown, many critical issues involved

in a given advance in U.S. RV technology were ignored in the assessments.


An interesting question is

IIs

the

improvement

why the

explained

by

the

assessment process

has improved.

Soviet military's experience in

designing, testing and deploying its mn re-entry vehicle technology over


the past

decade and a half?

Or, is it simply that more military writers

are being given access to western

I
I

sources? Or,

58

are the

western sources

themselves improving?

One

could hazard

a guess

that the answer is

in

fact some combination of the three.


In addition to the
assessments

over

improvements in

the

shifts of emphasis in

past

18

the Soviet

years,

these assessments

this report has also shown that


correlate well

emphasis in U.S. re-entry vehicle R&D programs.


based on worst case analyses and

for the

military's technology

with changes of

The assessments were not


were concerned with

most part

explaining how a given technology worked. As that technology has grown in


complexity, the Soviet assessments
certainly have

at least

have

become

more

comprehensive and

met the challenge of keeping pace with advances

in U.S. re-entry vehicle technology.

3.4.2

The Unvchanging

Nature

of

the

Soviet

Military's

Technology

Assessment Process
As Table

4 shows,

the nature of the military's technology assessment

process has changed little across technology areas and over the course of

20

years.

This

process

While the technology assessment

given technology works.


an unchanging

focus, it

technology assessments
past 20

years.

has consistently focused on explaining how a

was shown

in Section 3.4.1 that the individual

have changed

Indeed, the

process has had

and improved

considerably over the

improvements in the individual assessments

have enhanced the capability of the overall technology assessment process


to provide
best

allow

the Soviet military commaity with the information which will


it

to

respond

to

the

innovation.

59

challenge

of U.S.

technological

I.
I

APPENDIX I: AC1R,

.WN

American
ABM

Anti-ballistic Missile

ABRES

Advanced Ballistic Re-entry Systems program

AMARV

Advanced Maneuvering Re-entry Vehicle

ASMS

Advanced Strategic Missile Systems program (the successor to


the ABRES program)

BGV

Ballistic Guided Re-entry Vehicle

BBallistic

1
I

Missile Defense

CEP

Circular Error Probable

DRADs

Degradation of Radar Defense Systems

ECM

Electronic Counter-measures

EMP

Electro-magnetic Pulse

ICBM

Intercontinental Ballistic Missile

!MRV

Maneuverable Ballistic Re-entry Vehicle

MIRV

Multiple Independently-targeted Re-entry Vehicle

MRV

Multiple Re-entry Vehicle

MRV

Maneuvering Re-entry Vehicle


PGRV

(late 1960s)

Precision Guided Re-entry Vehicle

RADAG

Radar Aimpoint Guidance system

R&D

Research and Development


Re-entry Vehicle

RV
Soviet

1ErVM

I
I

(early 1960s)

Electronic Digital Computer

PVO

Anti-air Defense

PRO

Anti-rooket Defense

SPO

Anti-space Defense

60

APPENIX II

BACKGROUND INFaTION

I
This appendix provides

*(military

publishing

supplementary

house) books

information

utilized in

on

the Voyenizdat

the paper. The entry for

each book is standardized, and is of the following form:

Author(s):
Title:
Editor:
Technical Editor:
Date Signed to Press:
Tirage:
Summary Statement:

The categories are self evident except for the last one.
the "Summary Statement" is

typically provides

reference to its

intended

I call

a two or three paragraph summary of the book

which is printed immediately prior to


The summary

What

the "Introduction"

an overview

audienoe

and

or "Foreword."

of the book's objectives, a


brief

statement concerning

source materials used in writing the book.


I

A final

note:

Within a

given entry, the order in which the authors

are listed is identical to that given in the book.

61

Authors:

Aleshkov, M.N. (Candidate of Technical Sciences)


Zhukov, I.I. (Doctor of Technical Sciences)
Savin, N.V. (Engineer)
Kukushkin, D.D. (Candidate of Technical Sciences)
Markov, O.P. (Candidate of Technical Sciences)
Fomin, Yu. G. (Candidate of Technical Sciences)

Title: Fizicheskiye osnovy raketnogo oruzhi~a


(Physical Principles of Rocket Weapons)
Editor:

Peremyshlev, V.I.

Technical Editor:
Date Signed to Press:
Tirage:

Malkarova, N.Ya.
26 May, 1972

11,000

Summary Statement:
The book presents the principles of
weapons, the

elements of

the combat

flight theory,

the physical principles of jet

engines; rocket engines and fuels, systems


of various classes of rockets are described.
for the principal equipment of rockets

application of rocket

for the control and guidance


Descriptions

of various

are

designs and

given

of their

basic aggregates; also described is the groundbased and testing equipment


of rocket complexes.

A classification of rocket weapons is given.

The book is based on materials of the open home and foreign press.

62

IAuthor:

Anureyev, I.I.

Title:

Oruzhiye protivoraketnoy i protivokosmicheskoy oborony


(Weapons of Antirocket and Antispace Defense)

Editor:

Morozov, K.V.

Technical Editor:

Zudina, M.

Date Signed to Press:


Tirage:

6 April, 1971

16,000

Summary Statement:
The book examines rocket-space
these means
foreign

and the

models,

equipment and

problems of

weapons

of

means

of

attack,

struggle with

antirocket

and

the

properties of

them.

On the basis on

antispace

defense, their

operation are described; tactical-technical data are given

for antirocket and antispace defense systems developed abroad.


The book is based on foreign press materials.
The book

is intended

for a

wide circle

of military

readers of the

Soviet Army and Navy; other readers, who wish to acquaint themselves with
questions of antirocket and antispace defense in contemporary conditions,
will also find much of interest in the book.

Authors:

Ivanov, A.
Naumenko, I.
Pavlov, M.

Title:

Raketno-mdernoye oruzhiye i

Uo

DOLazharuahchee deystviye

(Rocket-Nuclear Weapons and Their Strike Effects)


Edit:

Kader, Ya. M.

63

Technical Editor:

Konovalova, E.K.

Date Signed to Press:

Tirage:

23 December, 1970

60,000

Summary Statement:
The authors popularly explain the physical principles and equipment of
rocket-nuclear weapons and their strike
data

on

the

equipment

of

atomic

rocket-carriers, on the means for


measures of

factors.
and

The

thermonuclear

calculating

the

book introduces
munitions

strike

zone

and

and on

defense from rocket-nuclear attack. The reader is acquainted

with the plans of the imperialists for the utilization of cosmic means of
struggle,

he

learns

about

the

strike

effects

explosions.

The book is written

using materials

Soviet

foreign

is

and

readers,

press

agitators,

and

propagandists,

intended
lecturers,

of

cosmic

published in

nuclear
the open

for military and civilian


and

teachers

who

are

interested in rocket-nuclear weapons.

Author:
Title:

Morozov, N.I.
Ballisticheskiye rakety strategicheskogo naznacheniye
(Ballistic Rockets of Strategic Designation)

Editor:

Morozov, K.V.

Technical Editor:

Konovalova, E.K.

Date Signed to Press:


Tirage:

24 April, 1974

10,000

Su317 Statement:
The

book

illuminates

the

ballistic rockets of strategic

general

principles

designation;

64

of

the equipment of

classification

of these

I "
Irockets

and their means of flight control are presented; the use of these

rockets in combat operations on land and at sea is recounted.


The book is based on materials of the open home and foreign press, and
questions of

the combat

use of

rockets are

presented via the views of

The book is intended for a wide

foreign specialists.

circle of military

and civilian readers who are interested in military rocket equipment.

I
JAuthors: Velikanov, V.D.
Galkin, V.I.

Zakharchenko, I.I.
Koposhilko, Yu. I.

I alyutin, A.S.
Mikhaylov, L.V.
Title:

Radiotekhnicheskiye sistemy v raketnoy tekhnike

1(Radio-technical

Sterligov, V.L.

Editor:

Konovalova, E.K.

Technical Editor:
Date Signed to Press:
Tirme:

Systems in Rocket Equipment)

22 April 1974

10,500

Summary Statement:
The book

contains a

views of foreign

radio-technical equipment

I
I

generalized and systematized presentation of the

specialists

on

in the

the

role

design of

and

place

of oontemporary

military systems of defense

and offense.

On the basis of foreign

of strategic

rocket weapons, phased array radars and the kinds and types
65

models, elements

of the complexes

of

interference

discussed.
press.

equipment

The book

It

is

specialists

intended
who

work

and

auditors

the

defense

of

rocket

nosecones are

is based on materials of the open foreign and home


for
in

radio-electronic apparatus.
students

for

of

wide

the

circle

of

military

and civilian

field of radar and other applications of


The

the

book

is

also

useful

for teachers,

radio-technical departments of schools,

universities and academies.

66

I..
IAPPMDIX
IDEFINITIONS

IThis
I

further

provide

appendix will

explication

of

several Russian

words which are used--in translation--throughout the paper.


by giving the
proceed to

III

U.S.

government

cite extensively

translation

of

these

I will start

terms,

and then

from Soviet sources in order to place these

translations in a broader context.

Golovnaya Chast'

The U.S.

government

translation is

translates

adequate for

stage ballistic missile.

phrase

as

"nosecone."

This

discussion of a single warhead atop a three

In this

instance, one

imagines the "nosecone"

separating from the missile's last stage and proceeding along a ballistic
trajectory util the warhead is

this

detonated.

No

confusion

translation does no disservice to the original Russian text.


arises, however, when one

term"golovrna
from the

up

chast'" refer?

The

post-boost

vehicle

which separates

ballistic rocket and dispenses individual warheads?

this

When Soviet

for example, discuss MIRV technology, to what does the

individual warheads each now following its own ballistic


clear

Confusion

examines re-entry vehicle configurations more

complex than, say, a single warhead atop a ballistic rocket.


military writers,

occurs: The

confusion,

I will

entsiklovediya and its entry for

utilize

"Golonay

the

Chast'

Or, to the

trajectory?

To

Sovetskaya voennaym
Rakety."

In what

follows, I will not quote word for word; instead, I will give an accurate
paraphrase of the encyclopedia's definition.

1.

67

The golovnaya chast' is a special, technical piece of equipment which


is located on the forward part of ballistic rockets.
It is designated
for the direct striking of targets. The golovnaya chast' consists of a
body, one or several combat charges, and various systems which ensure the
normal functioning of the golovnaya chast' during the rocket's launch and
flight through space.
The golovnaya chast' also contains systems which
ensure that the combat charge is detonated at the proper point.
A
golovnaya chast' with one combat charge is called a single-charge or
monobloc golovnaya chast'; a golovnaya chast' with several combat charges
is a multiple-charge or separating (razdelayushchava) golovnaya chast'
Several sentences

later, the separating golovnaya chast' is explained

in great detail.
A separating golovnaya chast' is best thought of as consisting of
several monobloc golovnaya chast' 's which are now called combat elements.
The dimensions and mass of these combat elements are relatively small in
comprarison with those, of a single monobloc golovnaya chast'. There are
four types of separating golovnaya chast'.
Type 1:
The combat elements are dispersed around a chosen aim
point.
In this case, the golovnaya chast'--along with its combat
elements--separate from the ballistic missile
when the missile's last
stage stops firing.
The combat
elements separate from the golovnaya
chast' in a manner which ensures their dispersal about the aim point.
This
kind of golovnaya chast' can be employed against large-scale
targets protected by antirocket defenses.
2:
The combat elements are
consecutively
aimed
at the
objectives of the strikes.
In this instance, the golovnaya chast'
resembles a special stage of the ballistic rocket. After separation from
the ballistic missile, the golovnaya chast' continues along a ballistic
trajectory for a certain period of time. Then, upon a command from the
control system, the first combat element separates from the golovnaya
chast'. This combat element completes its flight along a ballistic
trajectory.
Next, the propulsion system on the golovnaya chast' is
turned on in order to change its trajectory. This ensures that when the
second combat element is released, it will strike a different target.
This sequence continues until all combat elements have been released.
The separation between the targets that each combat element hits ranges
from tens to hundreds of kilometers.
Type 3:
The combat elements are individually guided
to their
targets.
The feature of a golovnaya chast' equipped with individually
guided combat elements is that each element contains its own control and
propulsion system.
This allows the combat element to complete a guided
flight in accordance with the program placed in its control system. This

68

type of golo%maya chast'


targets.

can be

employed against small-scale, shielded

The combat elements maneuver along the final part of their


Type 4:
trajectory (that is, in the dense layers of the atmosphere).
A golovnaya
chast' with maneuvering combat elements has a control system and
actuating organs (wings or fins) which ensure that the combat elements
execute a programmed aerodynamic maneuver in the atmosphere's dense
This significantly increases the combat capabilities of the
layers.
combat elements in overcoming the opponent's antirocket defense.
context of

To summarize, and to place things within the

jvehicle programs

and U.S. government terminology, one has the following:

With a Type 1 separating nosecone,


the

nuclear
has

nosecone

The

elements).

no

the

ballistic

trajectory

terms of U.S.

programs,

a Type

follows

of

carrier

passive

re-entry

U.S.

the

is

nosecone
(that

warheads
special

is,

the

combat

properties

and

simply

established

by

In

the rocket.

would dispense

I nosecone

essentially

iltiple

re-entry vehicles (M's).

i
|

A Type

nu'-lear

2 separating

nosecone plays an active role in dispensing the


elements).

(combat

warheads

propulsion system

post-boost

Itargeted

nosecone

In American terminology, the

vehicle

which

dispenses

multiple

nosecone is
independently

re-entry vehicles (MIRVs).

A Type 3 nosecone

is similar

to a

Type 2

nosecone--only now

combat element has a terminal guidance capability.

I
I

nontains

and deviates from the original ballistic trajectory

established by the rocket.


the

The

69

In term of

each
U.S.

programs, a Type 3 nosecone would dispense precision guided

re-entry

vehicles (GVs).

The Type
each

4 nosecone

combat

again resembles

element--while

the Type

lacking

2.

In this instance,

terminal

guidance

capability--can

execute

the atmosphere.

The U.S. system which envisages this combination

nosecone

and

combat

preprogrammed

elements

is

maneuvers once it has entered

the

of

maneuvering re-entry vehicle

program.

The above makes clear that the phrase "golo naya chast"' has several
distinct but

related meanings.

It

is the context in which the term is

used that defines its precise meaning.


point.

examples illustrate this

In 1967, a uTiter discussed U.S. plans to develop a "maneuvering

nosecone."
the

Several

Taken by itself, such a phrase would lead

mistaken

conclusion

that

the

a U.S.

analyst to

reference was to early U.S. work on

manuevering re-entry vehicles. The context, however, makes clear that the
writer

was

warheads.

discussing

the

The lesson

phrase

the

postboost vehicle which would dispense MIRV

here--besides the

"golovnaya chast'"

importance of

context--is that

should never be translated as "re-entry

vehicle." The military writer was in fact perfectly correct in talking of


a "maneuvering nosecone."

For him, the nosecone was more than simply a

re-entry vehicle; in this instanoe, it ws the


The postboost

vehicle does

execute trajectory

entire postboost vehicle.


changes while dispensing

the KIRVs; in this sense, it is indeed "maneuvering."

70

**

Another author, again assessing MIRV technology, urote in


"MIR-type nosecone."

Ivehicles,

or what?

several nuclear

Is

this a

reference to

the individual re-entry

Once the author noted that such

uwrheads and

its own

a nosecone contained

guidance system,

that his "nosecone" was the postboost vehicle.

1972 of a

it became clear

To reiterate: The context

is critical to a proper understanding of the phrase "golovnaya chast'."

ISources:

Sovetskaya Voyennaya EntsiklopediYa (1976; Vol. 2, 593-4)

Sergeyev (1967; 95)


Petrov (1972)

Lozhnaya Tsel'

IThe
1

U.S.

government renders this phrase as "false target." Strictly

speaking this is correct.

My

own research,

term

of

as

is

best

"penetration

thought

aids."

"lozhnaya tsell"

Soviet

the

however, suggests

Russian

military

language

writers

often

equivalent
use

the phrase

system.

devoted to "Ballistic Rocket Nosecones" mentioned "lozhnaya.

tsel"' on at least three occasions, but the term was never defined.

of

by itself--without further explication--when discussing

U.S. attempts to facilitate a nosecone's penetration of a BMD


1977 article

that the

This

example and numerous others indicate that the phrase lozhna.a tsel'/false
target is used in a general and generic sense to

denote a

wide range of

penetration aids.
A book published in 1974 included a chart which confirms that Soviet
military writers

I
I

lozhnaya

tsel'.

include
The

"interference

means"

unler

the rubric

chart-while difficult to interpret-

provides a

vmny

71

glimpse of how the Soviet military


full

array

of

penetration

organizes its

aids.

Appendix Table 1; Appendix Table

thinking regarding the

The original chart is reproduced in

is

an

English

translation

of the

Russian.
The chart is both confusing and interesting.
part from the use of the dotted lines: What do
odd that

a nuclear

interference means
artwork:

On

the

explosion in
(this, however,
page

previous

explosion is listed as

an active

chart

its

interesting

is

determined by examining
cover nearly

all aspects

may simply
to

the

be the

chart

in the book, a nuclear

the

nature.
chart's

As

What

makes the

far

as can be

various categories

penetration aids research through the

early 1970s.
Sources:

It is also

result of sloppy

interference means).

sources,

of U.S.

they signify?

the atmosphere is considered a passive

comprehensive

U.S.

The confusion stems in

Aleksandrov (1977; 46-7) Velikanov (1974; 156-7)

72

Appendix Table 1

IiCdJeu

ICNW9Od
IJMVaMA
nofCIO

J~

tie

(Mscw

i caeu
um~m

mop~u

(i

Voyenizfltea157

P~. 53.Krna~axuu

azo~o~foaummmeewlCusupo73u.

Appendix Table 2

Noise interFalse tarference


Cats of Volstations
urn. disneral
tvedioeashere
&'thelike)tort

Selective
fintertoenc4
statons

Prior nuclear explosiei


in atmo-

arr;:Idvd
renc4ndvdl
iln e
stations c

Heavy,

Fle arheads

Imitation
interferenc
stations
which dissignal

False targets

Radio
absorbing
coverings

False targets
attached by
wire to the
oLject

Fragments of
the body of
the rocket's
last stage

lGou

Light

False targets
dispersal
w 1ith
1enginos

multiple
imitation
interferenct
stations
(electric
false tarcots)

A Classification of Radar Interference Means for Overcoming PRO


74

NOTES

1. What I can say--after examining over 40 books and articles published


by the Soviet military--is that these assessments rely heavily on
western trade journals. Soviet military writers are not especially good
at citing their sources, but in those instances when they do, the
citations are a who's who of western aerospace trade journals: Aviation
Week & Space Technology, Flight International and the like.
2. That is, were the differences due to variations in the complexity of
the different technologies--for example, in the extent to which new
technologies built on previous ones (the MIRV program building on the
M'V program) or represented radical new technological adv
ablative coatings thermal shielding program).
3. In 1982, M3RES was renamed
(AS.S) program.

the

Advanced

Strategic

s (the

Missile Systems

4. Admittedly, this is a highly subjective concept. Nevertheless, after


analyzing various books and articles, one gains a feel for when a
particular author "knows his stuff;" that is, he understands the
technology being described and--most importantly--has the ability to
explain that technology through his writing.
5. Still another possible reason why the Soviet military devoted little
attention to U.S. inertial guidance technology may have been that the
Soviets were actively engaged in research on their own inertial guidance
systems.

I
|

6. The author is N. I. Morozov (1974). Pages 170-175 of his book were


taken from a 1971 Tekhnika i vooruzheniye article by K. .lorozov (see K.
Morozov (19711).
7. To give the reader a better feel for the nature and intended audience
of the books utilized in this study, I have included the "summary
statement" sections in Appendix II.
8. See, for example, Fayenov (1968; 110).

9. DBM, here and elsewhere, is synonymous


acronym for anti-rocket defense: I0.
10.
For a brief overview of the
history, see Greenwood (1975; Ch. 1).
11.

with

the

Soviet military

impetus behind MRVs and their RP&D

Ivanov (1971; 30), K. Morozov (1971; 46), Anureyev (1971; 51).

75;

12.
It is interesting that of the four sources for this section, three
appeared in 1971.
This was the year that the Soviet military began to
deploy its first MRV (the SS-9 Mod. 4). Prior to deplo.ment, the Soviet
>tRV was flight tested 22 times between August, 1968, and November, 1970.
[On these points, see Baker (1982; 104-5) and Wright (1985; Vol. 2,
239)].
Thus, the assessments in this section may reflect and be biased
by the Soviet military's experience with its own MRV technology.
13. The "program 627A" to which the author referred (Anureyev [1971;
51]) was, at least through 1969, the numerical designation for the ABRES
program.
14.

Anureyev (1971; 51).

15.

K. Morozov (1971; 46).

16. Here, as elsewhere, I have translated golovnaya chast'


For further discussion of this phrase, see Appendix III.
17.

Ivanov (1971; 30).

18.

Yakovlev (1968; 80).

as nosecone.

19. Anureyev (1971; 51-53), K. .Morozov (1971; 47), Petrov (1972). The
drawing which accompanies both the Morozov and Petrov articles is taken
from p. 52 of nureyev's book.
20. The heatshield (teplovoy ekran) mentioned here is apparently a
protective covering which shields the MIRV bus as the ICBM/bus ascends
through the atmosphere; it is not a reference to the thermal shielding on
the individual re-entry vehicles.
21.

Anureyev (1971; 51-2), K. Morozov (1971; 47), Petrov (1972).

22.

York (1973; 18-19, diagram on 20-21).

23.

Anureyev (1971; 51-2), K. Morozov (1971; 47), Petrov (1972).

24.

Anureyev (1971; 51).

25.

Aleksandrov (1977; 46).

26.

K. Morozov (1971; 46).

27.

Fayenov (1968; 114), K. Morozov (1971; 47).

28.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

29.

Yakovlev (1968; 80).

30.

Fayenov (1968; 114).


76

I.

.
*

31.

Fayenov (1968; 114).

32.

K. morozov (1971; 47).

33.

K. Morozov (1971; 47).

34.

Defense Market Service Market Intelligence Report (1969; 10).

35.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

36.

Sovetskaya Voyennaya Entsiklopediya (1978; Vol. 5, 119)

37.

N. Morozov (1974; 185).

38.

For a general description of the

39.

See Meyer (1983; 16)

k500, see Bunn (1984; 39-41).

40.

Aleshkov (1972; 226), Anureyev (1971; 53), K. Morozov (1971; 47).

41.

K. .orozov (1971; 47).

42.

ETsVM is the Soviet acronym for digital electronic computer.

43.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

44.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

45. While the focus on active over passive technology is difficult to


explain, it is interesting to note what the active/passive distinction
An active terminal
implies in terms of BMD detection capabilities.
guidance system like the RADAG, "broadcasts" (via its radar beam sweeps
of the. terrain below) the presence of the Pershing II warhead to the %I!)
system. In contrast, a passive terminal guidance system--for example, IR
sensors--would not "broadcast" the warhead's presence.
46.

Aleksandrov (1977; 49).

47.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

I
48. On this point, see "Guidance Systems" (1976; 41) and Bunn (1984;43).
In fairness to the Soviet author, there was apparent confusion in the
U.S. during the period 1976-78 as to the type of guidance system (active
or passive) envisioned for the AMARV. While "Guidance Systems"-writing
in 1976--stated that the AMARV's guidance would be passive, Congressional
testimony in the period 1976-78 suggested that the U.S. was exploring
(I am indebted
both active and passive guidance system for the AMARV.
to Matthew Bun of M.I.T.'s Arms Control and Defense Policy Program for
this information).
49.

Sovetskasa Voyennaya EntsiklovediYa (1978; Vol. 5, 119).


77

DI
I

50.

Sovetskara Voyennaya Entsiklovediya (1978; Vol. 5, 119).

51.

Platanov (1983; 36).

52.

Ignat'yev (1982: 50).

53.

Platanov (1983; 36).

54.

On this point, see Bun (1984; 60).

55.

Platanov (1983; 37).

56. A final comment on the Platanov article:


His figure 2 (Platanov
[1983; 371) is lifted detail-for-detail from the same western source used
by Arkin, et al (see Arkin (1983; 2941).
57. The criticism of Platanov is perhaps unjustified. Many--although
not all--of the American defense journals and aerospace weeklies are
written at the same level as
Platanov's article.
Since these
publications in all probability were Platanov's sourcre material, it may
be asking too much for the Soviet assessor to go beyond his American
counterparts.
58.

Ivanov (1971; 28).

59.

N. Morozov (1974; 75).

60.

Aleksandrov (1977;47).

61.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

62.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47), N. Morozov (1974; 75).

63.

N. Morozov (1974; 75)

64.

Ivanov (1971; 28), Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

65.

Sovetskaya Voyennaya Entsiklopediya (1976; Vol. 2, 593).

66.

Aleksandrov (1977; 47).

67. An active coating is one where a liquid is continually flowed over


the RV's surface. As the liquid flows over the hot surface it evaporates
and transfers thermal energy to the air surrounding the re-entry vehicle.
For the Soviet description, see N. Morozov (1974; 75).
68. This may be another case where the attention of Soviet military
writers was captured by an "exotic" technology. See Note 39 above and
the discussion which precedes it in the text.
69.

Miller (1976; 23).


78