The Russian Navy is expected to be the first country to field hypersonic cruise missiles on its submarines
The Russian Navy is expected to be the first country to field hypersonic cruise missiles on its submarines, potentially giving it some strategic advantages in naval warfare.
Zircon can reportedly fly at Mach 8 (i.e. 8 times the speed of sound) with some estimates being even higher. For comparison the Tomahawk cruise missiles carried by U.S. Navy and Royal Navy submarines fly at around Mach 0.75.
Most of the submarine-launched cruise missiles fired at Syria have been subsonic Kalibr type weapons launched from smaller Kilo class diesel-electric submarines. The missiles are likely loaded aboard the submarines at Russia’s base in Syria. They then drive out into the Mediterranean, submerge, turn around and shoot the missiles back over their base into Syria. It's almost a token effort, but it may have an impact on the export market for such weapons. Earlier this month another Kilo class submarine launched another variant of the Kalibr cruise missile. The twist: it wasn't a Russian boat. Instead it was a submarine which has been exported to Algeria. Other export customers of Kalibr missiles include China, Vietnam and India.Read more: Forbes
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