Russia admits its deadly zirconia hypersonic missile is suffering from “teething problems”

FILE – In this file, taken on January 16, 2020, Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a constitutional change meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow. Instead of openly explaining plans to expand his rule as in 2011, he proposed constitutional changes to give the Russian parliament more power. (Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool photo via AP, file)

Associated press

  • Russia’s deadly zircon hypersonic rocket appears to be suffering from unspecified “teething problems,” said the top admiral of the Russian Navy.

  • The commander-in-chief of the Russian Navy, Admiral Nikolai Yevmenov, told the RIA Novosti that the weapon is likely to be years from taking up duty.

  • In February last year, Russian President Vladimir Putin bragged that the development missile could reach speeds of up to Mach 9 and eliminate targets up to 620 miles away.

  • Further information can be found on the Business Insider homepage.

Russia is in the process of developing a new hypersonic rocket – the 3M22 Zircon (Tsirkon). However, the weapon is currently suffering from “childhood illnesses”, the top admiral of the Russian Navy told the Russian media.

The Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, Admiral Nikolai Yevmenov, informed the RIA Novosti that the zircon hypersonic rocket would be available to the fleet “in the coming years”.

The Russian admiral did not go into the “teething problems” that affect the development of the weapon. He only said that modernization efforts will address these shortcomings. Yevmenov said that the work on the zircon rocket is being carried out simultaneously with the ongoing efforts to arm the warships using the 3M-54 calibration land attack cruise missile.

Russia’s state-owned TASS news agency reported in March of last year without official confirmation that one of the 22350 Admiral Gorshkov-class frigates was expected to start testing zircon before the end of 2019. Still, no test appears to have taken place, as The Drive notes speculation about a missile test with Admiral Gorshkov in late November.

While TASS reported that “the frigate’s crew will conduct a number of attempts to test a new missile armament,” a follow-up report, citing the Northern Fleet, revealed that “the frigate fired a calibration cruise missile and a Oniks missile from the onboard – Launchers. “Neither missile is” new “.

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced in February last year that the zircon could reach speeds of up to Mach 9 and eliminate targets on land and at sea up to 920 kilometers away.

The exact capabilities of the zircon missile are unknown.

In November last year, he announced that the Udaloy-class 1155 Irkutsk nuclear submarine, Marshal Shaposhnikov, and the Antey-class 949A project would be upgraded to transport the zircon.

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