Shortfalls and Improvisation: Tracking Russia’s Missile Use in Ukraine

In the initial days and weeks following its invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, Russia relied extensively on its missile arsenal to try to achieve a rapid victory. During that time, the Russian military used its modern high-precision cruise and ballistic missiles freely, evidently believing it could achieve its war aims before stocks ran low. But as the war turned into a contest of attrition, and Russia intensified its bombardment of cities, the Russian armed forces have more heavily employed less-accurate Soviet-era weapons, suggesting shortages of the newer systems. Whether Russia can overcome these shortages could be decisive in Moscow’s ability to carry out its latest shift in strategy, a widespread targeting of critical infrastructure that began after a suspected Ukrainian attack that damaged the Kerch Bridge linking southern Russia to occupied Crimea on October 8.[1]

Western and Ukrainian official sources have, for months, attested to Russian shortages. The U.K. Ministry of Defense claimed in July that Russian stockpiles of newer weapons were “dwindling,” leading to the reliance on older weapons not designed for a land war. Similarly, on August 8, the U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl asserted that the Russians had “attritted a significant percentage of their precision-guided munitions,” including air- and sea-launched cruise missiles,[2] which had forced Russia to reduce its use of missiles. On October 14, Ukraine’s Defense Minister said that Russia has depleted its arsenal of high-precision weapons, with only 124 Iskander, 272 Kaliber, and 213 air-launched cruise missiles (Kh-101 and Kh-555) remaining available out of a total of 900, 500, and 444, respectively, at the start of the war.

Several pieces of evidence support these claims. In one noteworthy example, Russia has reportedly used the Kh-22, a Soviet-era anti-ship missile, to strike land-based targets on more than a dozen occasions since May. In late September, Russia also started using a modified S-300 anti-aircraft missile[3] to strike ground targets across eastern Ukraine. Since August, Iran has supplied Russia with expendable attack drones that Russian forces have used as substitutes for cruise missiles, and Iran is now reportedly preparing to supply Russia with short-range ballistic missiles as well.

Russia is also attempting to make up the shortfall. Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov reported in June that the state was working to replenish its stockpile and would not run out of high-precision missiles. Similarly, the First Deputy Chairman of the Board of the Military-Industrial Corporation, Andrei Yelchaninov, predicted that the budget for developing new products and rebuilding stockpiles would likely increase by 600 to 700 billion rubles[4] in 2022. Missile plants across the country have been operating at an accelerated rate, and Yelchaninov asserted that Russia has sufficient quantities of electronic components to support its defense industries for the next five years.

Despite these claims, Russia will face challenges as it tries to replenish its missile stocks due to a reliance on Western electronic components, which have been export restricted to Russia since 2014. This dependence has persisted despite federal programs beginning as early as 2008 that were intended to build domestic industries capable of supplying these components. Debris from recovered Russian missiles in Ukraine indicates that Western electronics produced after 2014 still made their way to Russia before the 2022 invasion, despite export controls. Tightened restrictions and increased enforcement in the intervening time will test Russia’s ability to carry out its strategy in Ukraine and to maintain a precision missile arsenal for use in future conflicts.

The table below sets forth what is publicly known, claimed, or estimated about the type, production, and current stocks of Russian missiles that have been used in Ukraine. It is sorted by the date the missile entered service, progressing from the most recent to the oldest.

Missile[5]NomenclatureDescription ManufacturerStatus
KH-47M2 Kinzhal.

NATO reporting name is AS-24 Killjoy.
Air-launched ballistic missile.

Travels at hypersonic speed but not a purpose-designed hypersonic missile.
Elektropribor (Voronezh) manufactures some “key components.”Reportedly entered service in 2017.

Reportedly has a stockpile of less than 40 remaining as of mid-September.
Kh-32/X-32Anti-ship air-to-surface missile.[7]

Upgraded version of Kh-22.
Raduga Design Bureau and Tactical Missiles Corporation.Entered service in 2016; development began in 1998.

Production ongoing.
Kh-101/Kh-102Kh-102 is the nuclear version of Kh-101.

NATO reporting name is AS-23A Kodiak.
Air-launched land-attack cruise missile.Raduga Design Bureau and Tactical Missiles Corporation.

Has reportedly used U.S.-made integrated chips.
Entered service in 2012; development began in 1980s.

Production ongoing.

Ukraine’s defense ministry estimated that Russia had a combined total of 213 Kh-101 and Kh-555 missiles in October.
Iskander K9M728 (has also been referred to as 9M727), R-500.

NATO reporting name is SSC-7.
Ground-launched land-attack cruise missile.Novator Plant.

Internal computers use both Western and Russian/Belarusian[8] electronic components.
Entered service in 2009.[9]

Production ongoing.
Iskander M[10]9M723 (ballistic missile), 9M720/Iskander-E (export version).

NATO reporting name is SS-26 Stone.
Short-range ballistic missile.Kolomna Machine-Building Design Bureau;
Votkinsk Plant produces the ballistic missiles for the system.

Reportedly uses U.S.-made gyroscopes and accelerometers.
Entered service in 2006; development began in the late 1980s.

Production ongoing.

Ukraine’s defense ministry estimated that Russia had 124 missiles remaining in October.
Kh-555/X-555Kh-55 (nuclear-armed version), Kh-55SM (extended range), Kh-65SE (export version), RKV-500, X-65C3, Kh-SD.

NATO reporting name is AS-15 Kent (Kh-55), AS-22 Kluge (Kh-555).
Air-launched land-attack cruise missile.Raduga Design Bureau.[11]Entered service in 2004.

Production ongoing.

Ukraine’s defense ministry estimated that Russia had a combined total of 213 Kh-101 and Kh-555 missiles in October.
Kh-35Kh-35E (export version), Kh-35UE (updated export version), Uran
3M24 (ship-launched).

NATO reporting name is AS-20 Kayak (air-launched), SS-N-25 Switchblade (surface-launched).
Anti-ship cruise missile.

Can be launched from air, land, or sea.
Zvezda Design Bureau.

Tactical Missiles Corporation.
Entered service in 2003; mass produced since 1994.

Production ongoing.

Launched against land targets in the Odesa region in June.
OnyxOnyks, Bastion (ground launched), Yakhont (export version), P-800 Oniks (ship-launched), Yakhont-M (air-launched).

NATO reporting name is SS-N-26 Strobile.
Anti-ship cruise missile.

Can be launched from air, sea, or land.
NPO Mashinostroyenia.

Strela Production Plant (Tula).
Entered service in 2002; produced since 1993.

Production ongoing.

Has been used against land targets multiple times since March.
KaliberCaliber, Kalibr.

3M-14 (land-attack); NATO reporting name is SS-N-30A.

3M-54 (anti-ship); NATO reporting name is SS-N-27 Sizzler.

Some variants referred to as Klub or Biryuza.
Large family of Russian sea-launched cruise missiles, including land-attack and anti-ship variants.Novator Design Bureau (part of Almaz-Antey Group).

Almaz-Antey is developing an upgraded version; also developing a ship-launched Kaliber-M.
Entered service in 1994 (3M-54) and 2015 (3M-14).

Production ongoing for all variants.

Ukraine’s defense ministry estimated that Russia had 272 missiles remaining in October.
Kh-31/X-31Kh-31A (anti-ship version)
Kh-31P (radar seeking).

NATO reporting name is AS-17 Krypton.
Air-launched anti-ship cruise missile.Zvezda Design Bureau and
Tactical Missiles Corporation.

Soyuz Machine Building Design Bureau produced engine.
Entered service in 1988; produced since 1982.

Production ongoing.

Has been used against land targets multiple times since July.
Kh-59/X-59X-59 Ovod,
Kh-59MKM, Kh-59MK, Kh-59MK2 (upgraded versions), Kh-59T, Kh-59L, Kh-59E (export version).

NATO reporting name is AS-13 Kingbolt.
Air-launched land-attack cruise missile.Tactical Missiles Corporation.

Raduga Design Bureau produces the upgraded versions.
Entered service in 1982.

Production ongoing.
OTR-21 TochkaTochka-U (upgraded version), 9M79.

NATO reporting name is SS-21 Scarab A (upgraded version Scarab B).
Close-range ballistic missile.Previously manufactured by Votkinsk Plant.Entered service in 1975; upgraded version in 1989.

No longer in production but maintained through a service life extension program.
Kh-22/X-22Kh-22 Burya, Kh-22M (anti-ship), Kh-22MP (anti-radar), Kh-22N (nuclear).

NATO reporting name is AS-4 Kitchen.
Air-launched anti-ship missile.Raduga Design Bureau.

Soyuz Machine Building Design Bureau produced the engine.
Entered service 1968.

Production ceased in 1988.

Quantity remaining in arsenal is uncertain.

Has been used against land targets multiple times since June.


[1] While many analysts suspect that Ukraine is responsible for the explosion that destroyed the Crimea-bound lanes of the Kerch Bridge, no one has formally accepted responsibility for the attack. Russia responded to the attack by launching 84 missiles at Ukrainian civilian infrastructure. See: “After the Crimean bridge attack, there are plenty of theories but few real answers,” NPR World Wide Web site, Hayda, Julian, October 13, 2022,; “Russia’s airstrikes, intended to show force, reveal another weakness,” The Washington Post World Wide Web site, Dixon, Robyn, October 14, 2022,; “Putin Calls Bridge Blast an Act of Terror,” The New York Times World Wide Web site, October 9, 2022, updated October 13, 2022,, accessed on October 14, 2022.

[2] Colin Kahl’s full comment on the rates of Russian missile use, remaining arsenal, and ability to replenish stocks: “So I think on it, certainly the Russians are expending a lot of munitions. I think our assessment is that they have attritted a significant percentage of their precision-guided munitions and their standoff munitions, so think air-launched cruise missiles, sea-launched cruise missiles, things like that. And I think we’ve actually seen a reduction in how often they’re using those because they’re running low. But in terms of exactly how much they have left, and also, what their assessment is, what they need to keep in reserve for other contingencies, but certainly on the PGMs and the standoff munitions, those have been substantially consumed, attritted. Now, I will say the other important fact to consider is that in addition to the crippling sanctions that have been put on Russia, there are these export controls that limit certain critical technologies, especially components like microchips that are essential for Russia to recapitalize its PGMs and standoff munitions. So it’s not just that their stockpiles have gone down appreciably because of how much that they’ve expended during the conflict, but it’s just going to be a lot harder for them to rebuild the high-end pieces of their military because of the international export controls that the United States has championed, so I think that’s important.” (Transcript: “USD (Policy) Dr. Kahl Press Conference,” U.S. Department of Defense, August 8, 2022, available at, accessed on August 31, 2022.)

[3] Per the Ukrainian Internal Affairs Minister Denys Monastyrskyi, the modernized S-300 missile has a longer range and explodes on impact, rather than burrowing into the ground. See: “Denys Monastyrskyi: The attack on Zaporizhzhia was carried out by the Russian Federation with modernized S-300 missiles, which have a much larger range,” Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine World Wide Web site, October 1, 2022, (in Ukrainian), accessed on October 3, 2022.

[4] As of October 11, 2022, 600-700 billion rubles is equivalent to approximately $9.324-10.878 billion (US).

[5] For all the below missiles, this column represents the name by which these missiles are referred to in media. Although they often have further classifications, news outlets typically refer to the missile by its family name. For example, Kh-555, an air-launched cruise missile, has several variants with different features and different classifications (including Kh-55, which is the nuclear variant), but media sometimes refers to it as the Kh-55.

[6] Details about the Kinzhal missile are not publicly known because information about the system is classified.

[7] While many sources refer to this platform as a cruise missile, it has a rocket engine, rather than a jet engine. See: “Kh-32,” Test Pilots World Wide Web site, (in Russian), accessed on September 27, 2022.

[8] See: James Byrne et al., “Silicon Lifeline: Western Electronics at the Heart of Russia’s War Machine,” The Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, pp. 34-40, available at, accessed on October 25, 2022: In a recovered Iskander K, in addition to Western electronic components, there were also integrated circuits built by the Russian company Angstrem and the Belarusian company Integral.

[9] This refers to the launch system and corresponding cruise missile.

[10] Iskander identifies both the launch system and the missile itself.

[11] See: “Cruise Missile Engine Manufacturing Localized,” The Moscow Times World Wide Web site,, accessed on August 2, 2022; “Russia Running Out of Kh-55 Cruise Missiles, Which Iran, China Have,” Iran International World Wide Web site,, accessed on August 2, 2022. Previously, Motor Sich (Kharkiv-based) manufactured its engines, but now NPO Saturn and Raduga Design Bureau have taken over production.