Yesterday, we reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin supervised the final test launch of a new hypersonic missile system that he alleges can evade US missile defenses will be deployed in 2019, as part of Russia's military modernization effort. "This is a great success and a big victory. This is a wonderful, excellent gift for the country for the New Year," Putin said.
An actual speed of Avangard, Russia’s state-of-the-art hypersonic projectile, is probably beyond the general public’s imagination as it can travel at more than 30,000km/h, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister revealed.
Little is verifiably known about the glider that was successfully test-launched by Russian military on Wednesday – essentially completing trials. Yet, Yuri Borisov threw some light on the secretive project, telling the Rossiya 24 TV channel that the latest test proved it can travel a whopping 27 Mach, which equals to over 30,000 km/h or 19,037 mph.
Outstanding mobility makes the Avangard one of the hardest targets, Borisov explained: “There’s almost no missile that can shoot it down at such speeds.”
It is extremely hard to predict the glider’s trajectory, which essentially leaves any missile defense system off-guard. “Any missile defense becomes useless, it is very tough to detect and hit the projectile,” Borisov told.
The military has previously said the Avangard glider was fired from the Dombarovsky site in southern Russia and targeted the test range in Kura in the Kamchatka Peninsula. The weapon performed in-flight maneuvers and accurately hit its intended target at a range, it’s been announced.
A hypersonic glider is a warhead able to fly through the atmosphere at an exceptionally high speed. China, the US, and Russia are considered the most advanced nations to possess hypersonic technologies, and Moscow claims it is leading in the race with the Avangard.