TASS News Agency
Russia’s Defense Ministry ordered an additional batch of cutting-edge Tsirkon hypersonic missiles, a source close to the ministry told TASS.
“The first contract to produce a batch of Tsirkons was signed in the summer of 2021. An additional contract — this fall,” the source said without indicating the exact date.
The additional contract involves several dozen missiles and should be completed in 2023.
TASS has no official confirmation of the report.
Earlier, the missile was test fired by the Admiral Gorshkov frigate of the Northern fleet. In 2021, Russia began the first tests of the weapon from an underwater carrier, the nuclear-powered submarine Severodvinsk. In early November, TASS reported that a mobile coastal launcher for the missile had been designed and produced.
The Tsirkon hypersonic missile was developed and is produced by the Research and Production Association of Machine-Building (NPO mashinostroenia, part of the Tactical Missiles Corporation) in Reutov in Moscow region.
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About Tsirkon Hypersonic Anti-ship Missile
Open sources said the hypersonic 3M-22 missile was designed by NPO-machinostroeniya in Reutov in the Moscow region. It is a part of the 3K-22 (Tsirkon code) complex which NATO reports as SS-N-33. The missile can develop a speed of Mach 9 and fly at an altitude of 30-40 km where the range and speed increase as air resistance is smaller. Experts estimate the payload at 300-400 kg and the missile length at 8-10 meters. Tsirkon is to be fired from universal vertical launchers 3S-14 on warships and submarines and from Bastion mobile coastal missile launchers.
The first-in-class frigate Admiral Gorshkov test-fired the Tsirkon (sometimes spelled Zirkon) hypersonic missile in January 2020. After the first shipborne test-fire, the Russian carried out a bunch of live trials of the missile in 2020, 2021, and 2022. One of the most important milestones was launching Tsirkon from Yasen-class submarine K-560 Severodvinsk, which took place on 04 October 2021.
Russian Navy deployed (or announced to deploy) the missiles to Admiral Gorshkov-class and Admiral Grigorovich-class frigates, Gremyashchiy class corvettes, as well as Yasen-class submarines.