Notable Missile TestsLast updated on 10/20/2016
- Late 1930s and early 1940s: The V-1, also known as the “flying bomb”, was tested by Nazi Germany. The V-1 operated similarly to a modern day cruise missile. Germany launched a limited number of the V-1s during World War II.
- October 1942: The V-2, the first long-range ballistic missile, was successfully tested by Nazi Germany. Throughout the Second World War, Germany employed the V-2 to launch strikes on targets throughout Western Europe, including London.
- August 1957: Russia claims to have successfully tested The R-7, the first Intercontinental-range Ballistic Missile (ICBM).
- October 1957: Sputnik is successfully put into orbit using a long-range rocket.
- August 1957: Burya, a long-range cruise missile flies for the first time.
- February 1961: The R-16 ICBM flies its first test mission.
- January 1965: The R-36 ICBM is launched from silo for the first time.
- February 1966: Russia’s first solid fueled ICBM, the RT-2, flies its first test mission.
- October 1967: The first RT-20P mobile ICBM is launched. A large number of launches were unsuccessful.
- December 1976: The first Soviet submarine launch of a solid propelled missile takes place.
- January 1984: The first railroad-based RT-23 ICBM (version 15Zh52) is tested.
- December 1994: Topol-M ICBM flies its first test mission.
- 1996: Iskander short-range missile is launched for the first time.
- April 1998: R-36M2 ICBM with 10 MIRV warheads successfully strikes all of its targets during test.
- July 2001: The R-29RL carrying the solar-sailing spacecraft launched from a submerged nuclear submarine.
- December 2004: The Topol-M ICBM is launched from a mobile launcher.
- May 2007: the RS-24, which is capable of carrying multiple warheads flies a test mission.
The United States
- April 1946: The first A-4 (V-2) was fired from white sands New Mexico.
- July 1948: The first MX-774 was unsuccessfully test fired.
- March 1957: The first Jupiter IRBM was unsuccessfully tested.
- September 1957: Thor IRBM fails during launch attempt.
- December 1957: The Atlas ICBM flies its first successful test mission.
- January 1958: A prototype of Polaris A-1 submarine-launched missile flew the first test.
- January 1958: Jupiter rocket launches the Explorer-1, the first U.S. satellite.
- February 1959: Titan I missile was successfully tested.
- September 1959: The minuteman I (America’s first solid fueled) ICBM was successfully tested.
- May 1962: The first submarine-launch of a live nuclear-tipped missile takes place.
- April 1969: The minuteman III launches from a silo for the first time.
- August 1970: The Poseidon C-3 ICBM becomes the first solid fueled rocket to be launched from a submarine.
- January 1977: The first Trident I C-4 SLBM flies a test mission from a surface pad.
- April 1979: Trident I flies its first test mission from a submerged submarine.
- June 1983: The MX peacekeeper ICBM is tested.
- October 1987: The first Small ICBM (SICBM) (Midgetman) is tested.
KN-11 (Polaris-1, Bukkeukseong-1)
- August 24, 2016 – A KN-11 launched from a sub-surface submarine and travelled 500 km.
- July 9, 2016 – A KN-11 was launched and reached an altitude of 10 km before exploding.
- April 23, 2016 – Test launch of a solid-fuel SLBM in the Sea of Japan.
- April 8, 2016 – Test launch of an SLBM.
- March 16, 2016 – Land-test of the KN-11 SLBM.
- December 21, 2016 – Failed test launch of the KN-11 SLBM. Was reported as a successful launch by North Korea after its fourth nuclear explosion test in January 2016.
- November 28, 2015 – Failed test launch of the KN-11 SLBM.
- May 8, 2015 – Test launch of the KN-11 SLBM from a submersible barge.
- April 22, 2015 – Test launch of KN-11 SLBM reported by 38 North.
- January 23, 2015 – Flight test of the KN-11 from a sea-based platform.
- December 21, 2014 – Test launch of the KN-11.
- September 5, 2016 – Three No-Dong missiles launched from TELs, each traveling around 1,000 km.
- August 3, 2016 – Two No-Dong missiles launched from TELs. One exploded shortly after launch, but the second landed in the sea within Japan’s exclusive economic zone.
- July 19, 2016 – One No-Dong and two Scud missiles launched from TELs.
- March 18, 2016 – Two medium-range missiles, believed to be No-Dong, were launched from TELs and flew about 800 km.
- March 25, 2014 – Two No-Dong missiles were launched and travelled almost 650 km before landing in the sea.
- July 4, 2009 – Believed to have launched two No-Dong and five Hwasong-6 missiles that each flew about 420 km.
- July 5, 2006 – Six missiles were launched, one was the Taepodong-2 and the other five were believed to be a mixture of No-Dong and Hwasong-6 missiles.
- May 29, 1993 – First successful test launch of two No-Dong missiles that travelled about 550 km.
- May 1990 – Failed flight test of the No-Dong.
- October 20, 2016- Another failed test of the Musudan that took place in Kusong. A U.S. expert, Jeffrey Lewis, stated the test could have potentially involved the KN-08.
- October 14, 2016-Failed launch took place in Kusong. Projectile exploded right after launch. A U.S. expert, Jeffrey Lewis, stated the test could have potentially involved the KN-08.
- June 22, 2016 – Successful launch of two Musudan missiles. One travelled 400 km after reaching an altitude of over 1,000 km.
- May 31, 2016 – Fourth failed launch attempt of the Musudan missile.
- April 28, 2016 – Failed launch attempt of two Musudan missiles.
- April 15, 2016 – First launch attempt of a Musudan missile that ended in failure.
Hwasong-5 (Scud-B Variant)
- July 26, 2014 – Test launch of a Scud missile that travelled about 500 km, likely the Hwasong-5 short-range missile.
- July 13, 2014 – Test launch of two, likely, Hwasong-5 missiles.
- July 9, 2014 – Test launch of two Hwasong-5 missiles.
- June 29, 2014 – Test launch of two Hwasong-5 missiles.
- March 3, 2014 – Test launch of two short-range missiles that travelled about 500 km, like the Hwasong-5.
- February 27, 2014 – Test launch of four short-range missiles that flew about 200 km and are believed to have been Hwasong-5 missiles.
- April and September 1984 – Six Hwasong-5 missiles, three in April and three in September, were the first confirmed flight tests and are reported to have had a 50% success rate.
- April 1982 – First reported flight test of an “indigenously modified Scud”.
Hwasong-6 (Scud-C Variant)
- July 19, 2016 – Two Scud and one No-Dong launched from TELs.
- March 10, 2016 – Launched two short-range missiles, believed to be Scuds, and flew about 500 km.
- July 4, 2009 – Test launched five Hwasong-6 and two No-Dong missiles that each flew about 420 km.
- July 5, 2006 – Six missiles were launched, one was the Taepodong-2 and the other five were believed to be a mixture of Hwasong-6 and No-Dong missiles.
- June 1991 – Hwasong- 6 missile launched.
- June 1990 – First reported successful flight test of the Hwasong-6.
- May 1986 – First test launch of the Hwasong-6.
- August 31, 1998 – The only launch of this missile that North Korea claims placed a satellite into orbit, but this is disputed by the international community.
- February 7, 2016 – The space-launch version, the Unha-3, successfully placed the Kwamongsong-3 satellite into orbit.
- December 12, 2012 – The space-launch version, the Unha-3, successfully placed the Kwamongsong-3 satellite into orbit.
- April 12, 2012 – Failed launch of the space-launch version, called the Unha-3.
- April 5, 2009 – Test launch of the Taepodong-2, in a space-launch configuration, called the Unha-2, that travelled around 3,800 km and landed in the Pacific Ocean east of Japan.
- July 5, 2006 – First attempt to launch the Taepodong-2 missile that failed 40 seconds into its flight. Five other missiles were also launched believed to be a mixture of Hwasong-6 and No-Dong missiles.
Anti-Ship Cruise Missiles
- June 14, 2015 – Launch of three KN-01 anti-ship cruise missiles.
- May 9, 2015 – Launch of three KN-01 anti-ship cruise missiles.
- February 7, 2015 – Test launch of the Russian KH-35 anti-ship cruise missile, Kim Jong-un attended the test.
- July 2, 2009 – Believed test launch of four KN-01 short-range cruise missiles.
- June 7, 2007 – Believed test launch of two short-range anti-ship cruise missiles.
- April 1, 2003 – Conflicting reports of a test launch of a short-range anti-ship cruise missile.
- March 10, 2003 – Test launch of a short-range anti-ship cruise missile.
- February 25, 2003 – Test launch of an anti-ship cruise missile.
- May 31, 1994 – Test launch of a new anti-ship cruise missile.
- April 2 & 3, 2015 – Reported four Toksa missiles were launched over the two days.
- February 8, 2015 – Five short-range missiles, believed to be KN-02s, were launched off the eastern coast.
- August 14, 2014 – Test launch of five short-range missiles believed to be KN-02 missiles.
- May 20, 2013 – Test launch of two short-range missiles, believed to be KN-02 missiles.
- March 16, 2013 – Test launch of two short-range missiles, believed to be KN-02 missiles.
- February 10, 2013 – Believed test launch of a short-range KN-02 missile.
Miscellaneous (Not Identified)
- February 11, 2017: North Korea tested a ballistic missile that flew east for 500 km before falling into the Sea of Japan. The missile was cold-launched, and conflicting reports claimed it was either a Nodong medium-range ballistic missile or a Musudan intermediate-range missile.
- September 20, 2016 – Ground test of the largest rocket engine to date.
- April 9, 2016 – Ground test of a large liquid-fuel engine designed for an ICBM.
- April 1, 2016 – Fired a short-range surface-to-air missile.
- March 29, 2016 – Test fired a short-range missile off the east coast that flew 200 km.
- March 22, 2016 – Ground test of a solid-fuel engine.
- March 21,2016 – Fired five projectiles into the sea from the east coast.
- Early August 2015 – Believed at least one test of a rocket engine.
- September 6, 2014 – Test launch of three short-range missiles, each traveling over 200 km.
- September 1, 2014 – Launch of a short-range missile that flew over 215 km.
- June 27, 2014 – Test launch of three short-range missiles that travelled around 200 km.
- Early August 2014 – 38 North reports a suspected engine test of the 1st stage of KN-08 missile.
- Early June – Early July, 2014 – 38 North reports a suspected engine test of the KN-08 missile.
- Late March – Early April 2014 – 38 North reports a suspected engine test of the KN-08 missile.
- March 22 – 23, 2014 – Reported test launch of 46 short-range rockets in the two days.
- March 17, 2014 – Reported test launch of 25 short-range rockets.
- December 2013 – Early January 2014 – 38 North reports a suspected long-range rocket engine test.
- Late August 2013 – 38 North reports a suspected long-range rocket engine test.
- May 19, 2013 – Two short-range projectiles launched off east coast.
- May 18, 2013 – Two short-range projectiles launched off east coast.
- Late March – Early April, 2013 – 38 reports a suspected rocket engine test.
- May 26, 2009 – Three short-range missiles launched. The missiles were believed to be anti-ship and surface-to-air missiles.
Scud-C Variant (Shahab-2)
- August 2010: successful test launch of the liquid-fueled Qiam-1 missile.
- May 1991: Test-fires Scud-C purchased from North Korea.
- July 2012: Successful test-firing of Shahab-3 Missile.
- July 2008: claims to have successfully test-fired a Shahab-3 missile.
- December 2004: Initial testing of Ghadr-1, a modified Shahab-3.
- October 20th 2004: Successful test of Shahab-3 variant, Shahab-3M.
- August 11th, 2004: Successful test of Shahab-3 variant, Shahab-3M.
- July 7th, 2003: Successful test of Shahab-3 missile.
- July 2002: Two tests of Shahab-3 missile, first is unsuccessful, second is successful.
- May 2002: Successful test of Shahab-3 missile.
- September 21st, 2000: Test-firing of Shahab-3D motor, disputed as to its success.
- July 15th, 2000: Successful test of Shahab-3 missile.
- July 22nd, 1998: First test flight of Shahab-3 missile, partially successful.
Sejil Missile Systems (Solid-Propellant Variant of Shahab-3)
- February 2011: Iran successfully test fires the Sejil-2 missile.
- October 2010: Successful test firing of Sejil missile.
- December 16th, 2009: Iran successfully test-fires an upgraded version of the Sejil-2.
- September 28th, 2009: Unsuccessful test of the Sejil-2 missile.
- May 20th, 2009: Iran successfully test fires the Sejil-2 missile.
- November 2008: First successful test of the Sejil missile system.
- November 2007: Initial version of Sejil missile, Ashura, test-fired unsuccessfully.
- May 2005: Iran successfully completes test-firing of Shahab-3D solid-propellant motor.
Anti-Ship and Cruise Missiles
- January 2012: Iran test fires Qader, and Nasr missiles during a naval exercise.
- February 2011: tests a supersonic, anti-ship ballistic missile, called the Khalij Fars.
- 1996: Test-fires a Chinese-built C-802 surface-to-surface cruise missile.
- June 1997: reportedly Test fires two Chinese-built C-801K.
- October 2015: Successfully test fired the Emad (Pillar) missile.
Safir Rocket (Shahab-3 Satellite-Bearing Variant)
- April 2016: Iran successfully launches Simorgh rocket.
- February 2nd, 2015: Iran launches Fajr satellite using Safir rocket.
- February 2012: Iran successfully launches the Navid satellite into orbit.
- June 2011: Iran launches the Rasad satellite into space using the Safir rocket.
- February 2009: Iran successfully launches the “Omid” telecommunications and research satellite using the Safir 2 rocket.
- February 4th, 2008: claimed to have successfully launched its Kavoshgar-1 rocket into space.
- January 2012: Iran test-fires Mehrab missile during a naval exercise.
- August 2012: reportedly test-fires a fourth generation Fateh-110 ballistic missile.
- September 2006: claims to have successfully tested a radar-evading missile called the Sagheb.
- July 16th, 2006: Fajr-3 missile exported to Hezbollah kills eight in Haifa.
- May 31st, 2001: First successful test of Fateh-110 missile.
- Missile Basics
- Today’s Missile Threat
- North Korea
- China’s Anti-Access Area Denial
- Russia’s Anti-Access Area Denial
- Non-State Actors
- Missile Proliferation Index by State
- Notable Missile Tests
- Combat Launches
- Future Ballistic Missile Technology