MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. Russia has launched serial deliveries of the state-of-the-art Tsirkon hypersonic missiles to the Russian Navy, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said at this year’s final Defense Ministry board meeting with the participation of the Russian president on Wednesday.
"We have launched serial deliveries of the Navy-based Tsirkon hypersonic missiles," Shoigu said. "The frigate Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov with top-notch Tsirkon seaborne hypersonic missile systems undergoes final preparations before embarking on a mission in the world ocean."
Shoigu also said that the Generalissimus Suvorov nuclear-powered submarine armed with Bulava ballistic missiles was commissioned with the Russian Navy.
"Nuclear submarines perform planned combat missions in their designated areas at sea. Another nuclear-powered submarine, the Borei-A class submarine Generalissimus Suvorov armed with Bulava ballistic missiles, has been accepted into the Navy," he said.
President Vladimir Putin said at the meeting on Wednesday that the frigate Admiral Gorshkov armed with breakthrough Tsirkon hypersonic missiles would embark on a combat patrol in early January 2023.
In his State-of-the-Nation Address to the Federal Assembly in February 2019, Putin said that the Tsirkon was capable of developing a speed of about Mach 9 (nine times the speed of sound) and its striking range capability could exceed 1,000 km. On August 24, 2021, a contract was signed at the Army 2021 international arms show on the delivery of Tsirkon hypersonic missiles to Russia’s Defense Ministry.
Tsirkon hypersonic missile
The Tsirkon hypersonic missile was engineered and is produced by the Research and Production Association of Machine-Building based in the town of Reutov in the Moscow Region (part of Tactical Missiles Corporation).
In his State-of-the-Nation Address to the Federal Assembly in February 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the Tsirkon was capable of developing a speed of about Mach 9 (nine times the speed of sound) and its striking range capability could exceed 1,000 km.
On August 24, 2021, a contract was signed at the Army 2021 international arms show on the delivery of Tsirkon hypersonic missiles to Russia’s Defense Ministry. President Putin announced on December 24, 2021 that the Tsirkon hypersonic missile system had conducted a salvo launch and the tests had been held "successfully and impeccably." It was reported in the fall of 2021 that Russia began the first tests of the Tsirkon hypersonic missile from an underwater carrier, the nuclear-powered submarine Severodvinsk.
On May 28 this year, a Tsirkon hypersonic missile was test-fired to the longest possible range, wrapping up the weapon’s state trials from a surface carrier, the Northern Fleet’s frigate Admiral Gorshkov. The warship fired the missile from the Barents Sea against a naval target in the White Sea at a distance of about 1,000 km, TASS sources reported.
According to the TASS data, the Reutov-based Research and Production Association is serial-producing Tsirkon hypersonic missiles. The defense firm is working on extending the missile’s operational range. A TASS source reported in May 2022 that the defense manufacturer was also developing a new coastal defense system with a Tsirkon missile.