Russia Test-Fires Hypersonic Missile from a Submarine for the First Time

The Russian military said on Oct. 4 that it successfully test-fired a “Tsirkon” (Zircon) hypersonic missile from a submarine for the first time.

In a statement, the Russian Defense Ministry said that the crew of the nuclear submarine Severodvinsk fired the Tsirkon from a depth of 40 meters in the waters of the White Sea and had hit its chosen target in the Barents Sea.

“According to objective control data, the flight of the rocket from leaving the water to hitting the conditional target fully corresponded to the specified parameters,” the Defense Ministry said.

The Defense Ministry also released a low-quality video that showed missile flares lighting up the night sky and the water’s surface.

A day earlier, the submarine fired the hypersonic missile from a surface position for the first time, according to the military.

According to Sky News, President Vladimir Putin has said that the missiles could fly at Mach 9 — nine times the speed of sound — and have a range of 1,000 kilometers.

Putin announced Tsirkon, as well an array of “unparalleled” weapons at an annual address to the nation in 2018, saying that they could hit nearly any point in the world and could evade United States missile defenses.

Last December, Putin said at an annual press conference that Russia was developing hypersonic weapons in response to a new arms race triggered by the U.S.

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