Official: Russian weapon 27 occasions sooner than velocity of sound

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MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s new strategic weapon has rendered any missile defenses ineffective at a small fraction of their price, officers mentioned Thursday.

The Avangard hypersonic glide car flies 27 occasions sooner than the velocity of sound, making it unattainable to intercept, Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov informed Russian state tv.

The brand new weapon “basically makes missile defenses ineffective,” he mentioned.

Borisov spoke a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin oversaw what he described because the conclusive profitable check of the Avangard and hailed it as a dependable assure of Russia’s safety for many years to come back.

In Wednesday’s check, the weapon was launched from the Dombarovskiy missile base within the southern Ural Mountains. The Kremlin mentioned it efficiently hit a follow goal on the Kura capturing vary on Kamchatka, 6,000 kilometers (3,700 miles) away.

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The Protection Ministry launched footage from the check launch, wherein a ballistic missile might be seen blasting from a silo in a cloud of smoke, nevertheless it hasn’t launched any photos of the car itself.

Putin mentioned the Avangard will enter service with the Russian Strategic Missile Forces subsequent yr.

The check comes amid bitter tensions in Russia-U.S. relations, which have been strained over the Ukrainian disaster, the battle in Syria and the allegations of Moscow’s meddling within the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Sergei Ivanov, a former Russian protection minister, mentioned in televised feedback that the Avangard consistently modifications its course and altitude because it flies by way of the ambiance.

He emphasised that in contrast to earlier nuclear warheads fitted to intercontinental ballistic missiles that comply with a predictable trajectory permitting it to calculate the spot the place they are often intercepted, the Avangard chaotically zigzags on its path to its goal, making it unattainable to foretell the weapon’s location.

A smiling Ivanov likened the weapon’s flight by way of the ambiance to a pebble skipping off the floor of water.

Ivanov, who now serves as Putin’s adviser, mentioned the Avangard might be fitted to the Soviet-made UR-100UTTKh intercontinental ballistic missile, which is code-named SS-19 Stiletto by NATO.

He famous that Russia has a stockpile of a number of dozen such missiles, that are in a factory-mint situation and never stuffed with gas, permitting them to serve for a very long time to come back. Ivanov added that they might be put in present silos, sharply lowering the prices of Avangard’s deployment.

“The Avangard has price lots of of occasions lower than what the U.S. has spent on its missile protection,” Ivanov mentioned.

He famous that Russia started to develop the Avangard after the 2002 U.S. withdrew from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty and began to develop defenses towards ballistic missiles.

Moscow feared that the U.S. missile defend might erode its nuclear deterrent, and Putin introduced in 2004 that Russia was engaged on a brand new hypersonic weapon.

Ivanov recalled that when Russian officers warned their U.S. counterparts in regards to the new weapon program on the time, American officers had been overtly skeptical about Russia’s capability to hold out its plan.

“We aren’t concerned in saber-rattling, we merely ensured our safety for many years to come back,” he mentioned.

The Related Press contributed to this report.

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