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VIDEO: Russia touts test launch hypersonic missile – Achieves Mach 8+

PortandTerminal.com, October 7, 2020

The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) released a video showing the first-in-class ship “Admiral Gorshkov” launching a Tsirkon hypersonic missile

MOSCOW – Russia has test-launched its Tsirkon hypersonic cruise missile and successfully hit a target in the Barents Sea. The Russian Ministry of Defense claims that the rocket’s speed was greater than Mach 8 which means greater than 5,927 mph.

The missile is said to be cable of achieving Mach 9 (6,667 mph) and is designed to fly at an altitude of 30-40 km (18-24 miles) where the range and speed increase as air resistance is smaller.

Experts estimate the payload at 300-400 kg (660-880 lbs) and the missile length at 8-10 meters (26-33 ft) . Tsirkon is to be fired from universal vertical launchers 3S-14 on warships and submarines and from Bastion mobile coastal missile launchers.

Birthday present for Putin

Happy Birthday to Vladimir Putin poster was hung on the facade of the building
A Happy Birthday to Vladimir Putin poster was hung on the facade of the building vis-a-vis the US Embassy in Moscow.

Symbolically, Vladimir Putin was informed of the successful test of the rocket on the Russian leader’s 68th birthday on Wednesday.

“According to the data, the Tsirkon hypersonic anti-ship cruise missile hit a sea target at a distance of 450 km with a direct hit. The rocket speed was more than Mach 8” (Russian MOD)

Speaking to Putin by video link, Valery Gerasimov, chief of the army’s general staff, said the test strike on Tuesday was carried out from the Admiral Gorshkov vessel which was located in the White Sea in northern Russia.

Putin, who has pledged to beef up Russia’s military presence in the Arctic, talked up hypersonic missiles and a new generation of Russian weapons in a March 2018 speech. He praised the test launch on Wednesday.

“This is a big event not only for the life of the armed forces, but also for all of Russia, for the whole country,” Putin told Gerasimov.

The Tsirkon test comes amid tensions over arms control between Russia and the United States. New START, the last major nuclear arms pact in place between the two countries, is due to expire in February.

Gerasimov said the missile hit its target at a distance of 450 kilometres (280 miles) in four and a half minutes after reaching hypersonic speeds of more than Mach 8.

He added that tests would continue and that Russian surface vessels and submarines would be armed with the missile when those tests are completed.

Russia reportedly test-launched the missile successfully from a military vessel for the first time in January.

With reporting by REUTERS

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