NPR

Russia's Nuclear Cruise Missile Is Struggling To Take Off, Imagery Suggests

Earlier this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed his nation had successfully tested a nuclear-powered weapon. Satellite imagery suggests it may not have gone so well.
New satellite imagery of a remote Russian test site suggests that the missile may not be working as well as claimed. Source: Satellite imagery from Planet Labs Inc.

It's a terrifying weapon: a nuclear-powered cruise missile that can fly anywhere on the planet, possibly spewing radioactivity as it goes. In March, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that his nation had successfully tested just such a machine.

But new satellite imagery of a remote Russian test site suggests that the missile may not be working as well as claimed.

The imagery, shared exclusively with NPR by academic researchers, shows ships removing equipment from the site where

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