Author Topic: Understanding and Classifying the Various Scud-Based Launchers  (Read 1840 times)

Offline Danderman

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Over time, many nations have launched space payloads using Scud variants. Although there have been a proliferation of Scud variants, they generally fall into three categories. Although these three variants have been mentioned by the experts, there isn't any general agreement on how to designate the variants, and some nomenclature is downright wrong. So, here is my attempt:

Scud: This is the designator for any system based on Scud-B (along with Scud-C and Scud-D). Scud-B (R-17)  is the "classic" Scud variant, whereas the -C and -D variants relate to attempts to increase range by payload reduction, or to increase accuracy.

R-18: This was a Russian design to increase the size of the Scud system by 125%. Although the Russians never built or flew an R-18, the North Koreans apparently received R-19 designs and components.  Another designation for R-18 based systems is Scud-M or R-17M, but this designation only confuses people. R-18 is the basis for early North Korean and Iranian space launchers, particularly the larger suborbital systems.

Burya: The Soviet Burya system featured boosters with 4 Scud class engines apiece. The initial Chinese orbital system, Long March 1, featured this as the first stage, and apparently the North Korean orbital launcher also uses a Burya type first stage. It is unknown whether the engines are Scud or R-18 class.

Corrections are welcome.