According to the analysts, Russian Tsirkon Hypersonic Guided Missiles may be invisible to radars due to the plasma cloud after launch, which completely covers the missile. This cloud can soak up all radio frequencies, making the missile “invisible”.
The missile could hit a target at a distance of 1000 km in less than seven minutes with a speed of Mach 9. Tsirkon can become an even more lethal missile if it can carry a nuclear warhead. However, in this case, nuclear warhead can be a maximum of 300 kilograms with reduced flight altitude with a maximum range of about 700 km.
Even if the missile does not carry a nuclear warhead, the kinetic impact generated as a result of 9 Mach speed will be sufficient to destroy the targets.
The missile characterizes by extraordinary speed and manoeuvrability. In the future, The Tsirkon hypersonic missile seems to be one of the essential actors of the Russian defence system. Since currently, no missile defence system may not be able to intercept Zircon, it provides deterrence to Russia against the other countries via the capable of hitting any ground targets and ships such as aircraft carriers.
During the five years, Russia has been performing missile tests, from frigates and corvettes. The last one was conducted successfully in December by the Russian frigate Admiral Gorshkov in the Barents Sea. According to the information obtained by an analyst, mass production and deliveries will begin in 2022, as the test results successful and satisfactory.
The first ship of project 22350, Admiral Gorshkov which is currently in service has 16 launchers allowed the use of new Zircon missiles. The same configuration will be applied to Admiral Kasatonov, which is currently in the testing period.
The Russian Navy plans to increase the strike power by increasing the number of launchers to 24 on the other ships of the project 22350. Consequently for Russia, which has built its military strategy and defence on nuclear weapons, Tsirkon Hypersonic Missile will become the main element of deterrence as a new tool.