Saturday, April 27, 2019

U.S. Far Behind China And Russia In Modernizing Nuclear Arsenal

Pentagon Official: US Far Behind China, Russia In Modernizing Nuclear Arsenal

David Trachtenberg, the Pentagon’s deputy undersecretary for policy, warned that China and Russia had developed asymmetric advantages in conventional and nuclear forces in the last decade, and now the US is behind the curve in modernizing its sea, air and land nuclear forces, reported USNI News
Trachtenberg said during a presentation at the Brookings Institution, the Pentagon delayed modernizing five armed service branches: Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy for two decades.

"In the 2000s, we skipped a generation" in modernizing ballistic missiles, nuclear submarines, and strategic bombers. During the same timeframe, allied forces in Europe took similar measures to reduce nuclear weapons.
At the same time, on the other side of the world, India, Iran, and North Korea developed nuclear capabilities of their own. 
"Most of the US's nuclear deterrence was built in the 1980s or even earlier," Trachtenberg said during the presentation. Nuclear Triad missiles are now "aging into obsolescence."
Trachtenberg said the US is not involved in a new arms race with Russia or China but mentions both countries are quickly modernizing its nuclear and conventional forces.

One topic that wasn't discussed in the presentation nor the conversation with USNI was the acquisition of hypersonic technologies by China and Russia. It's possible that both countries have far superior hypersonics, and have possibly matured the technology and launched series production for deployment in the coming years. This would create a monstrous defense and missile gap that could send the American empire to its knees.

According to a Weibo post by Xiamen University, "Jia Geng No. 1" hypersonic rocket, developed by Xiamen University Aerospace Academy and Beijing Lingkong Tianxing Technology Co., Ltd., was successfully tested in Northwestern China.
The pictures, embedded in the post, show the Jia Geng No. 1 rocket to be 28.5 feet long by 8.2 feet wide and weighing a little over 8,000 pounds.

The rocket features a gas turbine that could accelerate the vehicle to more than Mach 3, and has characteristics of a hypersonic ramjet engine.

The purpose of Jia Geng No.1 is likely to examine shockwaves at hypersonic speeds.
The Shanghai Morning Post notes that Xiamen University is the first university in the world to have developed and flown a hypersonic rocket.

"We call [the design] the double waverider," said Zhu Chengxiang, an assistant professor at the university’s School of Aerospace Engineering and part of the Jia Geng No. 1 team.
Unlike American hypersonic rockets such as Boeing's X-51 Waverider, which rides on a hot layer of gas known as a "shock wave," the Jiageng-1 No.1 rides on two layers of shock waves, one underneath the rocket and the other in the air intake of its ramjet engine.
The Jiageng-1 No.1 has several innovative advantages over Western hypersonic rockets: it can transition from supersonic to hypersonic speeds with ease, and the design produces more lift allowing it to travel further with more efficient fuel consumption.

Chengxiang said the Pentagon is deeply disturbed by China's rapid development of hypersonic vehicles and had tried to severe Chinese scientists’ collaboration efforts with Western researchers.

Another Weibo post by Xiamen University shows the hypersonic rocket in flight. The rocket flies throughout the Stratosphere with a maximum altitude of about 90,000 feet. During the test, the rocket performed as planned after making some maneuvers to "reproduce real flight conditions and conduct aerodynamic tests," then glided down and deployed a parachute to land safely on the ground.

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