It is somewhat unusual for the Russian military to announce their plans in advance, but this is exactly what happened - Nikolay Solovtsov, the commander of the Rocket Forces, said today that his units will conduct a test launch of a ballistic missile from the Baykonur test site on August 24 (very early in the morning). He did not disclose any further details, but the very fact of an early announcement seems to suggest that this might be an unusual launch.

Since launches of R-36M/SS-18 missiles has been recently moved to Dombarovsky, it is most likely that the upcoming launch will be that of a UR-100NUTTH/SS-19 missile. Should we expect another test of a "miracle maneuvering warhead"? Stay tuned.

Update: It will be a launch of a Dnepr/SS-18 launcher that will deliver into orbit two Japanese satellites. The launch is scheduled for August 24, 2005, 03:10 a.m. local time.