For the first time, Russia tested the 3M22 Zircon hypersonic missile from a Severodvinsk nuclear submarine, and they were successful. said the Russian Ministry of Defense on Monday. “For the first time, the Russian Navy has tested the Zircon hypersonic missile from the Severodvinsk nuclear submarine. The firing was carried out at a conditional sea target in the water area of the Barents Sea,” the ministry said in a statement. The tests were the first in the world to launch a hypersonic weapon from a submarine.
During the first test, the Project 885 Yasen nuclear-powered submarine was surfaced and hit a sea target. In the second test, the Severodvinsk was at a depth of 40 meters in the White Sea and hit a target on the Barents Sea coast, about 1000 km. Both tests were carried out in the dark.
This test comes after the July 19 test of the missile from the frigate Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov. After the tests, MoD said the rocket confirmed its tactical and technical characteristics; the flight speed was Mach 7 (more than 8.5 thousand km / h), and the range was over 350 km.
Zircon uses the universal launcher, which also launches the older Caliber or Onyx missiles and is already on many ships and submarines.
These tests are a part of Russia’s plans to modernize its fleet with longer range hypersonic weapons. The decision to induct these missiles into the active service will be by the end of the year. In August, the Ministry of Defense signed a contract with NPO Mashinostroyenia for the serial production of the first batch of the missile. It is planned to be delivered by 2025. The number of ordered missiles is not disclosed.
In addition to the frigates of Project 22350 “Ash”, the upgraded nuclear submarines of Project 949A “Antey” and the heavy nuclear missile cruiser “Admiral Nakhimov” were named as potential carriers of “Zircons” – after the completion of its repair and re-equipment. Severodvinsk is the lead submarine of project 885 “Ash”. The following eight submarines are being built according to the improved and modified project 885M “Yasen-M”. About four of them are scheduled to carry Zircon as a standard weapon.