Russia stated on December 27 that Russia’s first hypersonic missile “Avangard” has entered service. This missile, which claims to be able to fly at 20 times the speed of sound, is unmatched, giving Russia an advantage in developing new long-range intercontinental missiles .
The so-called hypersonic missile can fly at five times the speed of sound, break through the interception system with extreme speed, and attack the target. Russia claims that Pioneer missiles can fly at 20 times the speed of sound, that is, 6.8 kilometers per second. At this speed, when the missiles re-enter the orbit guidance, they can avoid conventional radar detection and dodge the pursuit of intercepting missiles.
American AHW and HTV
Countries known to be actively developing hypersonic missiles include the United States and China in addition to Russia. There are two systems under development in the United States. One is a weapon built by the U.S. military called Advanced Hypersonic Weapon (AHW) as part of the Prompt Global Strike program.
AHW first tested in 2011, and the weapon was successfully launched from the Hawaii base, successfully hitting a target 3,700 kilometers away.
The second is the Hypersonic Technology Vehicle (HTV) developed by the company Lockheed Martin, but it is more like an unmanned vehicle than a takeoff bomb. The purpose of the vehicle is to fly in orbit at hypersonic speeds and drop missiles upon arrival at its destination. The second-generation prototype HTV-2 was first tested in 2010.
As for China’s hypersonic weapon plan to be released in 2014, it is currently known that a hypersonic weapon called “WU-14” by the United States has been tested many times. Missiles increase speed and fine-tune direction to avoid enemy interception.
It is known that a missile named DF-ZF (Dongfeng ZF) can be equipped with related devices. Other weapons such as DF-17 (Dongfeng 17) also have similar device functions.
China officially acknowledges that it is developing related weapons and conducted several tests between 2014 and 2016 with success, but denied that the United States gave the WF-17 the code and evaluation.
Russia’s Vanguard missiles have begun testing in 2015 and are the first to serve in December 2019. It is known that in addition to Pioneer, Russia is also developing other similar weapons, such as the BrahMos-II missile, 3M22 Zircon ultra-high speed anti-ship missile, and the hypersonic missile named KH-47M2 Kinzhal carried by fighter aircraft.