North Korea's "Pukguksong-3A" two stage solid-fuel SLBM (?)

Norbert Brügge, German

2019, October 03
-- North Korea has posted pictures of the successful launch of a Pukguksong-3A SLBM on 2nd October 2019. It is a test version, without reentry warhead, nor the skirt with grid-fins. The launch was made from an underwater barge. For loading of this missile into a submarine is a larger class required. Such is under construction, as recently published pictures suggest.

Note: This missile is different from the older untested PS-3 model. It is possible that composite-casing motors with a diameter of 1.5 m are used here for the first time.


2017, August 22:  KNCA spreads images of planned wound-filament casings of carbon-fiber compound material in connection with an PS-3A SLBM



Diameter 1.5 m ?


First PS-3 SLBM as model

Model of first version of PS-3 SLBM

2019, September 13 -- Due to the recently unequivocally determined tires of the transporter with the missile on the parade in April 2017 we have to report a diameter of 1.4 m for a SLBM.
Thanks to Markus Schiller, st-analytics, Munich, for the beneficial discussion about the diameter of this presented missile. We can be pretty sure that we see on the parade the already announced Pukguksong-3 SLBM. This means that the PS-3 SLBM uses the same motors as the PS-2 GLBM. But this PS-3 SLBM is not yet tested in flight. In addition, a larger sized submarine is needed.
 Thus, the variant known as PS-1 SLBM is a smaller SLBM version with a diameter of 1.1 m. The motor was shown in a test mode by North Korea.

2021, October -- The old model of the PS-3 from the parade in 2017 at an exhibition.

The originally constant black stripes are now broken with a thin white line to confuse us.

2017, April 15 -- Pictures of Pukguksong-3 SLBM, seen on the parade.



 Analysis diameter


A visual difference to the PS-1 is the uninterrupted black stripes



Nozzle bay + Skirt with grid fins

Wall reinforcing winding ?