TASS Russian news agency
“A Tsirkon missile is expected to be launched from the White Sea before the end of the year. The specific date will be set as soon as the equipment is ready,” the source added.
According to the source, work is currently in progress to make a special test bench on the basis of a pontoon, from which the advanced missile will be launched.
The Machine-Building Scientific and Production Association that is developing the Tsirkon missile declined to comment on the information about the trials.
Naval News comments about 3M22 Tsirkon / Zircon
In his State-of-the-Nation Address to the Federal Assembly on February 20 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin informed that work on the Tsirkon hypersonic missile was proceeding as scheduled. As the Russian leader stated, the Tsirkon is capable of developing a speed of Mach 9 and its striking range capability can exceed 1,000 km. The Russian leader noted that the Tsirkon could strike both naval and ground targets.
A source in the defense industry told TASS in late 2018 that more than ten Tsirkon launches had been carried out against naval targets to ranges of several hundred kilometers since the start of the missile’s trials. According to media reports, the missile firings from a sea platform were conducted in 2016, 2017 and 2018.
Hypersonic weapons are missiles of reaching speeds of Mach 5 and more – or five times the speed of sound. Their overwhelming speed combined with their maneuvering capabilities make them a real challenge to intercept.