Russia tests new hypersonic war missile with power of a meteorite


The Kremlin says the Russian military has successfully tested a new hypersonic glide vehicle.

It says Russian President Vladimir Putin oversaw the test launch of the Avangard vehicle from the defence ministry’s control room.

In Wednesday’s test, the weapon was launched from the Dombarovskiy missile base in the southern Ural Mountains.

The Kremlin said it successfully hit a designated practice target on the Kura shooting range on Kamchatka, 6000km away.

Mr. Putin named the Avangard, which is among the array of new nuclear weapons that he presented in March, saying they cannot be intercepted. He said the Avangard has an intercontinental range and can fly in the atmosphere at 20 times the speed of sound and that “it heads to target like a meteorite, like a fireball”.

The new hypersonic missile, he says, will render existing missile defence systems obsolete.

“On my instructions, the Ministry of Defence prepared and conducted a final test of this system. This has just been completed with absolute success,” Mr. Putin said during a televised meeting with members of the government.

“Russia has a new type of strategic weapon,” he said, adding that the Avangard system would be ready for use from 2019.

Mr. Putin unveiled features of the Avangard during his annual address in March, which he said would be part of a new generation of “invincible” weaponry.

The hypersonic missile could fly at 20 times the speed of sound and manoeuvre up and down, meaning it could breach defence systems, he said at the time.

The final test comes after US President Donald Trump announced plans to pull out of a key Cold War-era nuclear weapons pact, the three-decade-old Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

With report


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