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Russia Shows Off Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile in Test-launch

Russia Shows Off Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile in Test-launch

Saturday, 28 May, 2022 - 08:15
Tsirkon (Zircon) hypersonic cruise missile is fired from guided missile frigate Admiral Gorshkov in the White Sea in this still image taken from video released July 19, 2019. Russian Defense Ministry/Handout via REUTERS

Russia successfully test-fired a hypersonic Zircon cruise missile over a distance of about 1,000 km (625 miles), the defense ministry said on Saturday.


The missile was fired from the Barents Sea and hit a target in the White Sea, it said. Video released by the ministry showed the missile being fired from a ship and blazing into the sky on a steep trajectory, Reuters reported.


President Vladimir Putin has described the Zircon as part of a new generation of unrivalled arms systems. Hypersonic weapons can travel at nine times the speed of sound, and Russia has conducted previous test-launches of the Zircon from warships and submarines in the past year.


Russia's military has suffered heavy losses of men and equipment during its three-month invasion of Ukraine, which it calls a "special operation", but it has continued to stage high-profile weapons tests to remind the world of its prowess in missile technology.


Last month it test-launched a new nuclear-capable intercontinental missile, the Sarmat, capable of carrying 10 or more warheads and striking the United States.


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