Russia has begun testing of its new hypersonic missiles for Long Range Aviation.
Russian Tu-22M3 (or M) long-range strategic bomber test-fired a new hypersonic missile, that could fly up to five times the speed of sound. According to the lenta.ru, the test prospective weapons will last several years and the adoption of new missiles is expected in the area of 2020-2021’s.
In August 2016, Tactical Missile Systems Corporation general director Boris Obnosov told Russian media that he was confident that Russia would be introducing hypersonic missiles capable of speeds between Mach 6 and Mach 7 by the year 2020.
The director emphasized that such weapons would significantly weaken the potential of enemy missile defense. “It’s obvious that with such speeds – when missiles will be capable of flying through the atmosphere at speeds of 7-12 times the speed of sound, all [air] defense systems will be weakened considerably.”
The technical knowledge for hypersonic weapons dates back to Soviet times.
However, after the breakup of the USSR all research was abandoned in the 1990s and money for developing the new weapon only began to be allocated again a couple of years ago.