Russians Equip Kh-101 Missile with Cluster Warhead

Russians Equip Kh-101 Missile with Cluster Warhead

Aviation armament Cruise missiles Russia Ukraine War with Russia

For the first time since the beginning of the full-scale Russian-Ukrainian war, the Russians used a Kh-101 strategic cruise missile with a cluster warhead.

This was reported by the Telegram channel @war_home.

It is reported that the first warhead of the missile remained high-explosive, while the second warhead transitioned to a cluster configuration.

The author of War_home notes that this modernization was the fourth since the beginning of a full-scale war:

  • version 1.0 has single-lens optics;
  • version 2.0 has optics with three lenses, equipped with an on-board EW system and a chaff countermeasure system;
  • version 3.0 has a tandem warhead;
  • version 4.0 has a tandem cluster warhead.

Possibly, the Russians could install a second warhead by reducing the volume of fuel tanks, which negatively affects the range of the missile. However, given the launch distance and the territory of Ukraine, the range reduction is not critical.

It is noted that previously, among the Russian arsenal of subsonic missiles, only the Kh-59 was equipped with a cluster warhead.


Kh-101 is a strategic cruise missile developed using radar cross-section reduction technology. A missile with a special nuclear warhead has a Kh-102 index.

It has been developed since 1995, and was adopted in 2013. The carrier of the missile is a Tu-95MSM turboprop strategic bomber (8 missiles on external hardpoint) and a Tu-160 (12 missiles in internal compartments).

The missile uses a combined inertial guidance system with optical-electronic adjustment with the activation of the homing head at the terminal stages of flight.

In the transport position, the R95TM-300 fanjet is housed internally, with the wings and tail folded underneath the missile.

After starting, the engine extends out of the body, and the tail decomposes.

The maximum range is 5500 kilometers. The missile can change its target simply during flight.

Aviation armament Cruise missiles Russia Ukraine War with Russia