The Zircon surface-based hypersonic missile will be adopted by the Navy in 2023. This was announced on January 27 by Alexander Leonov, general director, general designer of the Reutov NPO Mashinostroeniya.
He explained that he could not disclose information about the combat capability of Zircon, but confirmed the statements of the Ministry of Defense that the missile’s strike range was over 900 km. In addition, such a distance is not the limit, Leonov emphasized.
“I confirm what the military says. And it is not customary for us to speak more broadly. But this is not the maximum range. The missile should be adopted by the Navy this year,” he told reporters.
According to him, standard procedures for the design of weapons are now being carried out, while mass production has been launched. So, “Zircon” has already received the frigate “Admiral Gorshkov,” Leonov recalled.
On January 25, the crew of the frigate “Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov”, operating in the areas of the western Atlantic Ocean, conducted an exercise on the use of hypersonic missile weapons, namely the Zircon missile, by computer simulation.
On the same day, military expert Yuri Knutov told Izvestia about the technical characteristics of the Zircon hypersonic missile. According to him, the missile is designed to destroy sea targets and possible strikes against ground targets. It has a speed of more than 9 Machs, that is, approximately 11 thousand km / h, the flight range is up to 1 thousand km.
At the same time, on January 26, Pentagon Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh said that the crew of the Admiral Gorshkov frigate was working professionally in the western Atlantic and there was no reason to worry about its Zircon missiles.
The frigate “Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov” is a modern multi-purpose ship with guided missile weapons designed to solve problems in the far sea and ocean zones. A ship armed with Zircons is capable of inflicting pinpoint powerful strikes against any enemy targets at sea and on land. A feature of the Zircon hypersonic missiles is the ability to reliably overcome any modern and advanced air defense and missile defense systems.
On January 4, Russian President Vladimir Putin took part in the commissioning ceremony for the Admiral Gorshkov frigate, calling the event significant. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who took part in the ceremony of entering the frigate into combat service, in turn, said that the frigate would go on a campaign across the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, as well as the Mediterranean Sea. The main efforts of the frigate’s crew will be aimed at countering the threats to Russia.