Wed. Oct 5th, 2022
Russia's Hypersonic Missiles

A new era of Russian superweapons is now upon us and this is the message Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia Vladimir Putin wants us to believe.

They also raise worry since they could be a threat to United States’ traditional early warning systems and may not be able to the threat of these weapons.

Hypersonic weapons such as Russia’s 3M22 Zircon fly so quick and low — at speeds of up to Mach 6 and at a low atmospheric-ballistic trajectory — that they can penetrate ordinary anti-missile protection structures.

The missile is powered by an advanced fuel system that the Russians claim provides it with the ability to travel as long as 1,000 kilometers. And it’s that quick that the pressure of air on the surface of the weapon creates an erupting cloud of plasma as it moves, taking in radio waves and rendering it virtually inaccessible to radar systems.

U.S. Aegis missile interceptor systems need 8-10 minutes of response time to stop the incoming attack. Within those 8-10 seconds it is estimated that they will have already intercepted the Russian Zircon missiles and would already have traveled for 20 miles and interceptor missiles will not fly at a speed fast enough to catch ahead.

Russia's Hypersonic Missiles

Crew members and program managers are preparing the X-51A WaveRider to perform the “captive carry” flight under an Air Force Flight Test Center B-52H Stratofortress on Dec. 9 on 2009, at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. The mission of captive carry is part of the preparations that are for the X-51’s first hypersonic powered flight, which is scheduled for early in 2010. (U.S. Air Force/Mike Cassidy)

As per Popular Mechanics, even in the event that a U.S. ship was to detect a Zircon missile at a distance of 100 miles, they would need just one minute to take action against it.

To intercept a Russian Zircon missile and intercept it, the United States America U.S. would either need to intercept it during its launch or launch an object in the path of the missile.

Russia’s move to hypersonic weapons could be to be a way of battling American superiority in technology, size, and the sheer quantity of carriers for aircraft. It is believed that the U.S. Navy will maintain a fleet that includes 12 aircraft carriers powered by nuclear energy.

In contrast, Russia has one -and it is equipped with a tugboat in the case its engine malfunctions.

When at sea the Russian fifteen Buyan 15 Buyanclass corvettes are able to be able to transport up to Zircon Hypersonic missiles. It will require less than a half dozen of these missiles to destroy even the most modern American aircraft carriers, such as that of the USS Gerald R. Ford.

Some claim that advances such as Zircon are causing a shift in the field of technology. Zircon has shifted the development of technology for military use away from systems based on aircraft carriers which is causing the U.S. Navy to reconsider the purpose of the carrier in the first place.

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A weekly news program made up of videos, photos, and personal accounts of FRANCE 24 Observers across the world, all of which are checked by our staff in Paris.

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