Nowadays along with other technologies the best missile technology adds strength to the country armed services. At present of technological advancements every country, which has a well-known military power, is trying to enhance its missile technology because it becomes a real important tool in modern combat. Today by the development of nuclear weapons the importance of missiles that can carry nuclear weapons by a wide range is at its best. Mostly five nations are entitled to have long-range missiles that can carry nuclear weapons. These nations are Russia, United States, China, Britain, and France. However, other world’s countries are also doing well towards making their missile technology more challenging and advance.
List of Top Ten Countries with Missile Technology
North Korea has started its missile development program in the 1970s. In 1984, North Korea developed Scud-B ballistic missile that has the range of 300 km. It also developed the Scud-C (range of 500km), Scud-D (range of 800km) and the No-Dong (range of 1300km). North Korea is also an exporter of missiles to different countries like Pakistan, Iran, and Egypt. North Korea has tested and still developing Taepo Dong-2 and No-Dong-2.
While talking about missile technology developments in The Middle East, Iran is one of the leading countries in that perspective. Iran has the complete missile systems. Iran has developed short-range artillery rockets. Iran has also developed the Shehab-1 (range of 300 km) and Shehab-2 (range of almost 550 km). Shehab-3 missile, which has the range of almost 1,300 km, was also handed over to the revolutionary guard units in operational status. There are also some reports regarding the development of Shehab-4 and Kosar intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that will even longer-range missiles. On October 20, 2004, Iran has confirmed the successful experiment of Shehab-3 with 2,000 km of targeting range.
In 1990, Pakistan purchased M-11 ballistic missiles from China that has the range of 300 km. In late 1990, Pakistan with the help of China developed the 750km-range, solid-fueled shaheen-1 ballistic missile. It also purchased a small number of No-Dong ballistic missiles from North Korea. These No-Dong ballistic missiles have the range of almost 1,500km. Pakistan has tested its Ghauri missile in April 1988 and April 1999 that was the Pakistani edition of No-Dong ballistic missile.It is also developing Ghauri-2 that will have the range of about 2,300 km. Ghauri-3 and Shaheen-2 are also under the process of development that will even longer in range.
Israel has a wide-ranging missile industry that has the developed ballistic and cruise missile. Israel also has the unmanned aerial vehicles and a missile defense industry. In 1960, while performing the Jericho ballistic missiles series under the French assistance, Israel has produced Jericho-1, a short-range ballistic missile. Jericho-1 has the range of almost 500 km. In 1970, Israel had also developed Jercho-2 that has the range of about 1,500km to 1,800km. U.S.A has provided financial help to Israel in developing the Arrow Theater Defense missile that is the world’s single working missile defense system.
From almost two decades, India is trying to develop its ballistic missiles. Prithvi-1 and pritvi-2 have been included in the Indian Army and Air Force as well. India has performed a considerably short series production of Agni-1 that has the range of 700km and Agni-2 that has the maximum range of almost 2,500km. In 2003, India announced to test Agni III with a range of about 4,000km. India’s sea-launched ballistic missile that named as Sagarika reported as under development process. India has tested Agni IV successfully on 20 January 2014. Agni IV can take warhead of 1 tone. India is also testing Agni V that is solid-fueled Intercontinental Ballistic Missile and has the targeting range of more than 5,000km. Agni VI is also under development process.
Mainly Britain heavily depends on the US made submarine-launched ICBMs. The Great Britain shares a band of missiles with the US at the Strategic Weapons Facility Atlantic, Kings Bay Submarine Base, Georgia. Britain ended the nuclear function of Britain’s Tornado aircraft in 1988. U.S.A service the Trident II sea-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM) used by Britain.
After the US, Russia and China-France have the fourth biggest strategic armory as it has more than three hundred strategic warheads. The M-51 is an ICBM deployed by French Navy IN 2010. Mainly developed to replace the M45 SLBM. It has the maximum range of almost 10,000km. It can carry about six independently re-entry vehicles with a yield of 100kt-150kt each.
China’s important achievement towards missile technology is the innovation of Dongfeng 5A (NATO reporting name is CSS-40) that is an improved version of DF-5A ICBM. It has the range of 13,000km. The missile can carry about six re-entry vehicles with a weight of 600kg each. China also has the Dongfeng 31A (NATO reporting name is CSS-9 Mod-2) that is the long-range ICBM. It has the maximum range of 11,200km. It can carry only one thermal nuclear weapon of 1,000kt.
2-United States of America
The Minuteman-III (LGM-30G) considered as one of the longest, ranged Intercontinental Ballistic Missile. It has the range of 10,000km with a weight of almost 34,473kg. It can travel at the speed of 15,000mph. The Minuteman is the only land-based ICBM in the armory of U.S military. Another important U.S missile is UGM-133 Trident 2 (Trident D5) that can carry a nuclear weapon with a maximum range of 11,300 km. It is a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM). It can travel at the speed of 13,000 mph. It is presently in the use of US and Royal Navies. The Trident II D5 (Life Extension) is likely to be in service until 2042.
Around all other highly rated countries, Russia has got maximum points in missile technology. Russia has the RS-24 that has the capability to take nuclear weapons. RS-24 can carry almost four to six warheads. RS-24 has the targeting range of 10,500 km while having a mass at launch of about 47,200 kg that includes 1,200 kg of payload. Another distinction, which Russia is having in missile technology, is the development of R-36M Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). R-36M is the world’s longest-range missile with the targeting range of 16,000 km. R-36M can carry nuclear weapons. Russia is also developing a submarine-launched ballistic missile that considered the future of Russian nuclear triad.