Hades (missile)

Hades (Missile)

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Hades (missile)

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The Hadès system was a short-range ballistic pre-strategic nuclear weapon system designed by France, as a last warning before use of strategic nuclear weapons, in the perspective of a Soviet invasion of Western Europe. It was designed from July 1984 as a replacement for the tactical road-mobile Pluton missile.

The 120 intended Hadès missiles were to be launched from wheeled trailers, each carrying two missiles in containers that acted as launch systems. The original design was a range of 250 km, which was later increased to 480 km. The missile was carried horizontally, erected by the truck itself, and launched immediately. The light weight of the missile made it easy to deploy even on difficult zones, and its great range made it usable for limited strategic aims, though not to destroy Soviet cities and missile silos.

The navigation system was an inertial platform which could be programmed to execute evasive maneuvers before hitting the target. The version of the Hades missile designed to hit solid underground targets also had a final guidance system which used a GPS-based digital system, resulting in a Circular Error Probable of only 5 m. "Regular" versions are likely to have had a CEP of less than 100 metres.


Hadès began with project definition in 1975 as a replacement for the Pluton system. Development started in July 1984, and flight testing started in 1988. The Hadès program planned to build 120 missiles, some with nuclear and some with HE...
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