Rockets away! Successful test of Tsirkon in the White Sea


The Russian Ministry of Defense announced on Wednesday that it had carried out a successful test launch of its hypersonic missile Tsirkon (3M22 Zircon) from the Northern Fleet frigate. Admiral Gorshkov, the warship that has been used in many past tests of the platform. The missile hit its target in the White Sea.

“The data from the recording equipment shows that the flight of the hypersonic missile adhered to the designated parameters. The target was destroyed by a direct hit,” the ministry told TASS. “The Northern Fleet involved its ships of surface and its naval aviation to ensure the test firings and to close the zone.”

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu reported the successful launch directly to President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, who has been a strong supporter of the Tsirkon. Earlier this month, he urged his country’s arms makers to develop even more advanced hypersonic missiles as well as high-energy lasers to maintain Russia’s advantage in military technologies.

“It is particularly important to develop technologies to create new hypersonic weapons, high-energy lasers and robotic complexes that would be able to effectively counter potential military threats and further strengthen the country’s security,” Putin said during the meeting. a meeting with government officials.

More tests to come

A Defense Ministry source previously told TASS that public testing of the Tsirkon hypersonic missile would begin in November and continue into December. A total of five test launches against marine and coastal targets are planned.

On August 24, 2021, a contract was signed with the Machine-Building Research and Production Association at the Army 2021 international arms fair for the delivery of Tsirkon hypersonic missiles to Russian troops. Company CEO Alexander Leonov said at the time that the contract for the missiles would be completed by 2025.

“The missile has been standardized and can be used from both surface ships and submarines. The only difference is which launcher is used on surface ships or submarines,” Leonov told reporters.

As previously reported, a Russian Defense Ministry statement did not specify which Russian ships would be equipped with the much-vaunted Tsirkon upgrade first. Still, based on earlier reports from anonymous Russian defense industry insider statements, the honor will likely go to Admiral Golovkothe third frigate of Project 22350 Admiral Gorshkov to classify.

The Tsirkon will likely eventually join many warships in the Russian Navy fleet, including the Kirov– class battle cruisers Petr Veliky and Admiral Nakhimovas well as the modernized Admiral Grigorovich– class frigates and Karakurt/Buyan/Gremyashchiy-class corvettes. The missile could additionally feature prominently in the new Russia’s offensive capabilities. yasen-M-class missile-launching nuclear submarines, seven of which are expected to enter service until 2028.

The 3M22 Tsirkon (also known as “Zircon”) is a winged hypersonic anti-ship cruise missile that is said to be capable of reaching speeds of up to Mach 8-9 and maneuvering midair to evade defenses enemy air.

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to over four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites. He writes regularly on military small arms and is the author of several books on military headgear, including A gallery of military hairstyleswhich is available on

Image: Russian Ministry of Defense


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