March 18, 2016

Russia Test-Fires Hypersonic Zircon Missiles

The first tests of the Russian Navy’s new hypersonic Zircon cruise missiles have been launched in Russia. The cruise missiles are expected to reach five or six times the speed of sound (Mach 5 or Mach 6).

It will be mounted on Russia's newest fifth-generation Husky-class nuclear submarines which are currently under development.

Modern Russian anti-ship missiles, like Onyx, can reach up to Mach 2.6 (750 meters per second). The sea-based Kalibr cruise missile travels at a Mach 0.9 speed, but while approaching the target, its warhead speeds up to Mach 2.9.

The Zircon hypersonic cruise missiles will also be used for Russian battleship Pyotr Veliky, Tass news agency reported last month. The range of the missile is likely to be just over 248 miles.

"The Pyotr Veliky will start repairs in the third or fourth quarter of 2019. Repairs and upgrade are due for completion in late 2022, the ship to be equipped with Zircon hypersonic anti-ship missiles," a source told Tass at the time.



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