The first test launch of Russia’s land and sea attack hypersonic missile fired from frigate Admiral Gorshkov has been termed a success.
The missile traveled at 9 times the speed of sound after launch from a frigate in the Barents Sea and hit a ground target in the test held in January, TASS said quoting two unnamed officials from the North-Western Federal District today.
"In accordance with the program of the Tsirkon’s state trials, the Admiral Gorshkov (frigate) test-launched this missile from the Barents Sea against a ground target at one of military testing ranges of the Northern Urals in early January," one of the sources was quoted as saying.
The other source said that "the range of the Tsirkon’s flight exceeded 500 km." The missile has a maximum range of 1000 km, according to its designers.
“After the program of test-launches from the board of the Admiral Gorshkov is over, these missiles will be test-fired from nuclear-powered submarines," the source commented. The missiles will likely form the main strike force of Russia’s ship and submarine force in the decades to come.
The missile’s developer- Research and Production Association of Machine Building -declined to comment, said TASS.
Russian President Vladimir Putin had stated in 2019 that the Tsirkon is capable of Mach 9 speed and its striking range capability can exceed 1,000 km and that there were plans to deploy Tsirkon on warships built for launching Kalibr cruise missiles.
The Kalibr cruise missile has been successfully used by Russia in the early days of the battle against the ISIS in Syria. The Tsirkon will ensure that it will stay ahead of the interception capabilities of air defence systems such as the US Patriot for years to come.