Russia is developing a top secret hypersonic missile designed to ‘break through any modern air defence system,’ according to a report.
Tests will start next year on the weapon codenamed Ostrota, or Sharpness, the pro-Kremlin Izvestia reported overnight.
The news comes a day after President Vladimir Putin threatened to ‘knock the teeth out of’ foreign enemies.
The latest missile will be deployed with supersonic Tu-22M3 bombers and Su-34 fighter bombers ‘to break through any modern air defence systems,’ the pro-Kremlin Izvestia reported.
The new small-sized hypersonic missiles are seen as modernising Russia’s non-nuclear defences.
Experts say they will ensure Russia’s ‘leading position in this field of high-tech type of weapons’ and offer ‘irresistible blows’ to highly-protected targets.
‘A ramjet engine was developed specially for the new super-high-speed rocket,’ reported Izvestia.
Russia has revealed that it has been developing a secret hypersonic missile, a day after President Vladimir Putin threatened to ‘knock the teeth out of’ foreign enemies. Pictured: Putin at a virtual meeting on Thursday
News of the weapon comes as Putin has accelerated his bid to outdo the West in military firepower.
Russia confirmed that the first of four final tests of the Zircon hypersonic missile, debuted in October last year, will be in June.
All tests on the Zircon, also spelled Tsirkon, missile are expected to be completed by the end of summer.
The weapon is a 6,100mph ‘unstoppable’ cruise missile that is due to go into service next year.
Putin sees the missile as his weapon of choice to target American cities in the event of a nuclear conflict, it has been reported.
‘This first launch of the Zircon missile from the frigate Admiral Gorshkov under the programme of state trials is scheduled for June,’ a defence source told Russia’s TASS news agency.
The source also confirmed that the country’s Baltic Fleet is to be ‘seriously increased’ and that submarines armed with the new-age Zircon missiles are expected to be deployed to protect the new undersea Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.
Tests will start next year on the weapon codenamed Ostrota, or Sharpness, it was reported overnight. It will be deployed with supersonic Tu-22M3 bombers (pictured)
The new small-sized hypersonic missiles are seen as modernising Russia’s non-nuclear defences and will be deployed alongside and Su-34 fighter bombers (pictured) ‘to break through any modern air defence systems,’ the pro-Kremlin Izvestia reported
The Ostrota and Zircon add to Russia’s already considerable missile arsenal. It already has the Avangard missile system (pictured) with a hypersonic glide vehicle which Putin claims strikes ‘like a meteorite’ and is unstoppable by any defence system
The Biden administration this week waived sanctions on Nord Stream 2 in a bid to mend relations with Germany, which will receive gas from the pipeline.
Concerns have been raised that the project could weaken European Union states by increasing dependency on Moscow.
The waivers have no specific end date, but can be rescinded by the US secretary of state Anthony Blinken.
Nikolai Yevmenov, Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, said Russia’s Baltic Fleet ‘is gaining even greater importance in connection with the new challenges and threats posed by the expansion of NATO’s presence in the Baltic region’.
The Ostrota and Zircon add to Russia’s already considerable missile arsenal. It already has the Avangard missile system with a hypersonic glide vehicle which Putin claims strikes ‘like a meteorite’ and is unstoppable by any defence system.
It is capable of travelling at 20 times the speed of sound, rising outside Earth’s atmosphere, and hitting anywhere in the world in less than 30 minutes.
There is also the Dagger – hypersonic nuclear-capable missile which operates at ten times the speed of sound.
Russia confirmed that the first of four final tests of the Zircon hypersonic missile, debuted in October last year, will be in June. All tests on the Zircon, also spelled Tsirkon, missile are expected to be completed by the end of summer
Pictured: The Zircon missile blasts out of the Russian frigate during a test on Putin’s 68th birthday in October 2020
Putin boasted on Thursday that the Russian military is now leading the world in modernisation of weaponry, while warning countries over ‘biting off’ areas Moscow deems Russian territory.
‘Everyone wants to bite us or bite something off us, but those who would like to do so should know that we would knock their teeth out so that they couldn’t bite… The development of our military is the guarantee of that,’ he said during a virtual meeting with officials.
‘We commission new aviation systems that are unmatched throughout the world – combat surface ships and submarines – and top-notch drones,’ he said.
‘Of course, the question arises as to what the current state and development perspectives of the armed forces are.
‘This may sound strange for many, but everything is more than okay on our side.
‘We have the most cutting-edge nuclear deterrence forces out of all nuclear powers.’
Russia was able to bring new weapons to fruition thanks to careful military spending and to the preservation and development of scientific schools, and the training of engineers, he said.
‘We manage to maintain our armed forces at a proper level without militarising our budget, and we will keep doing this,’ he pledged.
On Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (right) met his US counterpart Anthony Blinken (left) and others at the Arctic Summit in Iceland
On Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met his US counterpart and others at the Arctic Summit in Iceland.
Blinken stressed the importance of upholding ‘effective governance and the rule of law’ to ensure that the ‘Arctic remains a region free of conflict where countries act responsibly.’
Lavrov hit back saying Moscow saw ‘no grounds’ for conflict in the Arctic but warned the West about militarising on Russia’s doorstep.
The two sides have recently increased their military posturing, with the United States sending bombers to Norway and Russia conducting large maritime and air exercises.
Several other foreign ministers, including those from Canada, Iceland, Finland, Norway and Sweden, echoed Blinken’s call to keep the Arctic peaceful and free of conflict under the authority of international, rather than that of individual countries.