Putin: Russian army to deploy new hypersonic missile system

Putin: Russian army to deploy new hypersonic missile system

Putin: Russian army to deploy new hypersonic missile system

Earlier this month, Putin said at a Russian defense ministry meeting that Russia had already started the serial production of the Avangard missile systems.

"In the previous year, China has tested more hypersonic weapons than we have in a decade", said Michael Griffin, undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, as reported by a US Army website.

As Russian state-run news agency Sptunik reported, Russia's President Vladimir Putin declared the test a success and, now that testing has completed, the system will be "put into service" in "due time". But subsequent developments have borne out an altogether different truth: these weapons are, in fact, quite real, and pose varying levels of strategic threat. The Kremlin said it successfully hit a designated practice target on the Kura shooting range on Kamchatka, 6000km away.

Russian President Vladimir Putin centre oversees the Avangard test launch
MIKHAIL KLIMENTYEV APRussian President Vladimir Putin centre oversees the Avangard test launch

In a bellicose speech in March, Putin presented the Avangard missile as one of an array of new nuclear weapons that Russian Federation needed to counter new threats posed by the development of the U.S. missile defense system.

Russian Federation claims the system is capable of speeds exceeding Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound), and that the missile can perform evasive maneuvers to avoid modern missile defense systems.

Russian Federation says the S-400 is a cutting-edge air defence system that can detect and shoot down targets including ballistic missiles, enemy jets and drones up to 600 kilometre away at an altitude between 10 metres and 27 kilometres.

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"The Avangard is invulnerable to intercept by any existing and prospective missile defense means of the potential adversary", Putin said, adding that it could be deployed from next year with the military's Strategic Missile Forces.

Hypersonic warheads travel faster than traditional ballistic missiles.

"Hypersonic weapons boast features such as manoeuvrability - gliding, for example - and they are nearly impossible to intercept because they are travelling at such high speed", Song said.

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