By David Crane
david (at) defensereview (dot) com
Photo(s) Credit: Russian Ministry of Defence
December 30, 2019
Well, this one’s gonna’ be a tough one to deal with, assuming it works as advertised, of course. DefenseReview’s been writing about Russian and Chinese hypersonic missile tech for quite some time now (see “Related Articles” below), but Russia’s latest one, the Avangard Hypersonic Glide Vehicle, which creates a newfangled nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missile of sorts, is being touted by the Russians as “a technological breakthrough comparable to the 1957 Soviet launch of the first satellite”, according to the AP. The Avangard Hypersonic Glide Vehicle’s actually launched atop an interecontinental ballistic missile. Once it releases from the missile, it’s capable of making “sharp maneuvers in the atmosphere en route to target, making it much harder to intercept,” again, according to the AP.
Obviously, this is highly problematic for US military defense strategy, which already has enough on its hands with legacy Russian and Chinese ICBM’s. Of course, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s been hyping the Avangard to anyone and everyone that’ll listen since March 2018, but the new hypersonic weapon only recently entered into actual combat duty.
In order to handle such high-order hypersonic velocity through the atmosphere, the Avangarde utilizes advanced composite materials that can withstand temperatures of up to 3,632 degrees Fahrenheit, or 2,000 degrees Celsius while flying at Mach 27 (27 times the speed of sound), and delivering a 2-megaton nuclear warhead to the target. This obviously creates a rather serious nuclear weapson threat for us (the United States), one that we must solve and successfully counter if we plan to win a World War III (WWIII)-level nation-state war against Russia, or a Sino-Russian military alliance.
Now, unless the US military’s own hypersonic glide vehicle technologies (like the DARPA-Raytheon Tactical Boost Glide, or TBG, system, for example) are ready to go operational, the Russians are now ahead of us in the nuclear warfare game, and that’s really not good. So, let’s hope the US military already has a working counter to the Avangard, or will at least have one soon.
Defense Review will try to stay on top of this one, ’cause it frankly scares us.
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