The DC Patriot, January 5, 2022
Russia test-launched 12 if its new 3M22 Zircon (Tsirkon) hypersonic nuclear-capable missiles in 2021, all of which may have taken place in “salvo” launch during two December 24 tests from a submarine and a frigate, Russia revealed last week.
“Last night or, to be more exact, this morning, the Tsirkon hypersonic system was salvo-launched,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said during a joint meeting of the State Council and the Council on Science and Education on Dec. 24, Russia’s state-run TASS news agency reported. “This is our latest missile that can strike both naval and ground targets. The tests were successful and impeccable.”
“This is a big event in the country’s life and a considerable step towards enhancing Russia’s security and its defense capability,” Putin added.
Putin and the Russian Defense Officials would not specify how many Zircon missiles were launched on the December 24 “salvo” launch.
However, the Russian Ministry of Defense stated last week that the Russian Navy’s Northern Fleet conducted a total of 12 Zircon missile launches over the course of 2021, adding to a total of 70 tests of new weapons in 2021.
Those tests saw the Russian Project 22350 frigate, known as “Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Gorshkov,” launch ten different Zircon missile tests. The crew of a Northern Fleet’s Project 885 Yasen nuclear submarine conducted another two test launches of the Zircon missile.
According to Russia’s Ministry of Defense, the Northern Fleet missile submarine “Severodvinsk” conducted both Zircon missile tests in October. The first submarine test was launched from a surfaced position and the second was launched from a depth of 40 meters (131 feet) under the water.
The Zircon hypersonic missile was previously tested in October 2020 and is projected to officially enter service in 2022. Putin has touted the Zircon as part of a new generation of unmatched weapons.
Thanks to our friends at American Military Times for contributing to this article.