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Type Mobile medium-range ballistic missile
Place of origin North Korea
Service history
In service 1998 - present[2]
Used by
Production history
Manufacturer North Korea
Produced 1990 - present[3]
Length 15.6 m[4]
Diameter 1.25 m[4]
Warhead weight 1,000 kg (est.)[2]

Engine Liquid
Propellant liquid
1,200 km (est.)[5]
Flight altitude 160 km if in lofted trajectory which reduces the operating range to 650 km[6]
Accuracy 2,000 m CEP[7]

The Hwasong-7[8] (Hangul화성 7호; Hanja火星 7號; spelled Hwaseong-7 in South Korea), also known as Rodong-1 (Hangul: 로동 1호; Hanja: 蘆洞 1號) or Nodong-1 (Hangul: 노동 1호; Hanja: 蘆洞 1號), is a single-stage, mobile liquid propellant medium-range ballistic missile developed by North Korea. Developed in the mid-1980s, it is a scaled up adaptation of the Soviet SS-1, more commonly known by its NATO reporting name "Scud". Inventory is estimated to be around 200-300 missile.[9] US Air Force National Air and Space Intelligence Center estimates that as of June 2017 fewer than 100 launchers were operationally deployed.[5]

One variant Rodong-1M is called Hwasong-9.[10]


Estimated maximum range of some North Korean missiles[11]

Hwasong (Hwaseong in South Korea) is the Korean word for "firestar/mars".

It is believed North Korea obtained Scud-B designs from Egypt and possibly Scud-C designs from China, and reverse-engineered them into a larger and longer-distance weapon. U.S. reconnaissance satellites first detected this type in May 1990 at the Musudan-ri test launch facility.[12]

The precise capabilities and specifications of the missile are unknown; even the fact of its production and deployment are controversial. It is a larger variant of the Scud-B, scaled up so its cross-sectional area is about double that of the Scud, with a diameter of 1.25 metres (4 ft) and a length of 15.6 metres (51 ft).[4]

Its aerodynamic design is stable, reducing the need for modern active stabilization systems while the missile is flying in the denser lower atmosphere. It can only be fueled when vertical, so cannot be fueled before transport as is normal for modern missiles.[4] Its range is estimated as 900 km with a 1000 kg payload[4] to a range of between 1000 km to 1500 km with a 1000 kg payload.[2] North Korea test-fired three Hwasong-7 missiles consecutively on 5 September 2016 and they all flew for about 1000 km, landing in the Japan Air Defense Identification Zone.[13]

It has an estimated CEP of one or two kilometers.[14] North Korea is believed to possess some 300 Hwasong-7 missiles[15] and fewer than 50 mobile launchers.[16]

The Hwasong-7's technology has been exported to foreign nations (such as Iran and Pakistan) in secrecy on the basis of mutual exchange of technologies, with Iran being the most beneficiary of such technology. Successful variants were tested and deployed by Iran after developing the Shahab-3 which is roughly based on Hwasong-7.

Pakistan, however, suffered with repeated failure due to flawed design given in exchange but succeeded in reevaluating the missile's conceptual design and its electronic system in 1998. The Hatf 5 Ghauri missile which is independent of Rodong-1's design, eventually entered in the active military service in 2003.

A few Hwasong-7 missiles were launched in the 2006 North Korean missile test, and two in a 2014 test over a range of 650 km.[17][18]

Although it has an estimated range of 1,000–1,500 km (620–930 mi), launches in March 2014 flew only 650 km (400 mi). Their range was shortened by firing at a higher launch angle. The missiles flew to an altitude of 160 km at Mach 7. U.S. and South Korean Patriot PAC-2/3 interceptors are more specialized to hit Scud-type missiles up to 40 km high.

On 5 September 2016, North Korea fired three consecutive Rodong-1 missiles into the Sea of Japan and at a range of about 1,000 km.[13] This marked the Rodong-1 as a credible and matured missile suitable for operational deployment since its first successful launch in 1993. The United Nations Security Council condemned North Korea's missile launches.[19]

To enable interception at higher altitudes, South Korea is indigenously developing the long-range surface-to-air missile (L-SAM),[6] and on 8 July 2016 the U.S. agreed to deploy one Terminal High Altitude Area Defense missile defense system in Seongju County, in the south of South Korea, by the end of 2017.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Twitter". 
  2. ^ a b c Fact Sheet: North Korea’s Nuclear and Ballistic Missile Programs - Arms Control Center, July 1, 2013
  3. ^ a b "Egypt's Missile Efforts Succeed with Help from North Korea". Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control. 1996. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Markus Schiller (2012). Characterizing the North Korean Nuclear Missile Threat (Report). RAND Corporation. ISBN 978-0-8330-7621-2. TR-1268-TSF. Retrieved 19 January 2013. 
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ a b NK's March missile test aimed at evading interceptor systems: sources -, 19 June 2014
  7. ^ "No Dong 1 - Missile Threat". 
  8. ^ Pike, John. "Missiles - North Korea Special Weapons". 
  9. ^
  10. ^ Pike, John. "North Korean Missile Designations". 
  11. ^ "How potent are North Korea's threats?". BBC News Online. 15 September 2015. 
  12. ^ Bluth, Christoph (July 31, 2011). Crisis on the Korean Peninsula. Potomac Books Inc. p. pages not numbered. ISBN 9781597975773. Retrieved 17 March 2017. 
  13. ^ a b North Korea fires 3 ballistic missiles; Japan calls it 'serious threat' – CNN, 2337 GMT 5 September 2016 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "CNN" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  14. ^ John Schilling, Henry (Long) Kan (2015). The Future of North Korean Nuclear Delivery Systems (PDF) (Report). US-Korea Institute at SAIS. Retrieved 30 April 2015. 
  15. ^ Around 70% of N.K. missiles target S. Korea -, 4 March 2013
  16. ^ Ballistic and Cruise Missile Threat (PDF). National Air and Space Intelligence Center (Report). Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Agency. April 2009. NASIC-1031-0985-09. 
  17. ^ "North Korea test-fires 'ballistic' missiles". BBC. 26 March 2014. Retrieved 26 March 2014. 
  18. ^ Choe Sang-Hun (25 March 2014). "North Korea Launches Two Midrange Missiles". New York Times. Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  19. ^ UN council condemns N Korea missile launches, vows new measures Archived 17 September 2016 at the Wayback Machine. – CNA, 27 August 2016 12:15 Singapore Standard Time
  20. ^ Yoo Seungki (4 August 2016). "Shift in THAAD site in S. Korea nothing to solve controversies". Xinhua. Retrieved 4 August 2016. 

External links[edit]