Who: Pakistan Nuclear Forces, 2015 Report
What: Released by Bulletin of Atomic Scientists
When: 19 October 2015
The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, a USA based online magazine, on 19 October 2015 released a report entitled Pakistan Nuclear Forces, 2015 delineating the present status and expected future trends in nuclear arsenal of Pakistan.
It is an update of Nuclear Notebook on Pakistan released in 2011 by Hans M Kristensen and Robert S Norris of Denmark and the USA respectively.
Highlights of Nuclear Forces, 2015 Report
• Pakistan has a nuclear weapons stockpile of 110 to 130 warheads, an increase from an estimated 90 to 110 warheads in 2011.
• With several delivery systems in development, four operating plutonium production reactors, and uranium facilities, the country’s stockpile will likely increase over the next 10 years.
• How much Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal will depend on two key factors-how many nuclear-capable launchers Islamabad plans to deploy, and how much the Indian nuclear arsenal grows.
• Based on Pakistan’s performance over the past 20 years and its current and anticipated weapons deployments, its stockpile could realistically grow to 220 to 250 warheads by 2025, making it the world’s fifth largest nuclear weapon state.
• Pakistan appears to have six types of currently operational nuclear-capable ballistic missiles, plus at least two more under development: the short-range Shaheen-1A and medium-range Shaheen-3.
• Pakistan is also developing two new cruise missiles, the ground-launched Babur (Hatf-7) and the air-launched Ra’ad (Hatf-8).
• As of late 2014, the International Panel on Fissile Materials estimated that Pakistan had an inventory of approximately 3100 kg of highly enriched uranium (HEU) and roughly 170 kg of weapon-grade plutonium that is enough to potentially produce 200 to 300 warheads.
List of nuclear-capable missiles
Land-based ballistic missiles
• Abdali (Hatf-2)
• Ghaznavi (Hatf-3)
• Shaheen-1 (Hatf-4)
• Shaheen-1A (Hatf-4)
• Shaheen-2 (Hatf-6)
• Ghauri (Hatf-5)
• NASR (Hatf-9)
• Babur (Hatf-7)
• Ra’ad (Hatf-8)