Russian Official Says Sarmat Advanced Nuclear Missile System on Combat Duty

Known by NATO as 'Satan 2,' Russian officials say the Sarmat can carry up to 15 nuclear warheads

A Russian official said Friday that an advanced Russian intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) system, known as Sarmat, has been placed on combat duty.

“The Sarmat strategic system has assumed combat alert posture,” said Yury Borisov, the head of Russia’s Roscosmos space agency, according to Russia’s TASS news agency. Russian President Vladimir Putin said in February that the Sarmat system would be deployed this year.

The Sarmat was made to replace older ICBMS and is believed to be Russia’s most powerful missile. Nicknamed in the West as “Satan 2,” the Sarmat can pack a huge nuclear payload and has a range of about 11,000 miles. Russian officials say the Sarmat can carry up to 15 nuclear warheads using multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVS).

“Based on experts’ estimates, the RS-28 Sarmat is capable of delivering a MIRVed warhead weighing up to 10 tons to any location worldwide both over the North and South Poles,” TASS reported.

According to RT, Putin has previously said Russia had to develop the Sarmat “after the US reneged on its commitment not to build” anti-ballistic missile systems.

In 2002, the George W. Bush administration withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Systems Treaty, which had been in effect since 1972. The idea of the treaty was to limit anti-ballistic missile systems so the two powers would not feel compelled to produce new nuclear weapons.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.