New missile system for Armed Forces could be tested late 2019 – SSAU head

The aerospace sector of Ukraine seeks to start tests of the new Hrim (Thunder) mobile short-range ballistic missile system designed by Pivdenne (Yuzhnoye) Design Bureau (Dnipro) in the interests of the Armed Forces of Ukraine at the end of 2019, Head of the State Space Agency of Ukraine (SSAU) Pavlo Dehtiarenko has said.

"We are working on both the missile and the entire system. Unfortunately, the work is not as fast as we would like: there are technological and financial difficulties, both for contractors and for customers. Nevertheless, we expect that by the end of next year it will be possible to demonstrate this complex [to the customer] and test it," Dehtiarenko told Interfax-Ukraine.

He said that the creation of a new missile system is conducted by Ukraine with observance of all the international limitations and regimes with regard to the range of this missile weapon, without exception.

"When so-called couch experts begin to say that it [the missile system] can go beyond these parameters [as for the range], then this is nothing more than idle speculation of outsiders," Dehtiarenko said.

"This is about the same, when they say, for example, that Dreamliner Boeing-737 plane can fly 15,000 km. Yes, maybe, but it should leave half of the passengers: in technology everything is interconnected," he said.

The term of the supply of the new Hrim missile system to the Ukrainian Armed Forces depends, among other things, on the pace of the promotion of the defense cooperation project to create an export version of the missile system in the interest of a foreign partner, Dehtiarenko said.