On Saturday Russia announced it conducted another successful test of the Zircon hypersonic missile, which reportedly flew over a distance of 1,000km (or 621 miles) after it was launched at a target in the White Sea.
The missile was fired from the Russian navy’s Admiral Grigorovich-class frigate the waters of the Barents Sea. The identified area for the test, given the hypersonic was launched from the Barents, is very close to waters off Finland and Sweden.
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Reuters wrote of the footage released by the defense ministry, “Video released by the ministry showed the missile being fired from a ship and blazing into the sky on a steep trajectory.”
“Today, the lead frigate of Project 22350, Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov, fired a hypersonic cruise missile ‘Zircon’ from the Barents Sea at a naval target position located in the White Sea (a southern inlet of the Barents Sea). The rocket firing was carried out as part of a test of new kinds of weapons,” the defense ministry said.
Though it was likely a long in the making “scheduled” test launch, it comes as the Ukraine war is in its fourth month, and as a result Finland and Sweden have abandoned their historic neutrality and have applied to join NATO.
Russian President Vladimir Putin previously hailed the Zircon hypersonic missile as capable of traveling upwards of Mach 9, or about 6,900 mph. It’s widely believed that no anti-air defense system in the world is capable of bringing it down, given its speed.
This latest Zircon test comes after last month the Kremlin carried out a test of the Sarmat, which is a new nuclear-capable intercontinental missile capable of reaching the United States. The Sarmat is described as capable of carrying ten or more warheads.