Military Review

Russian, American and Chinese concepts of the use of hypersonic weapons: what are the differences


The coming years will be the era of the hypersonic arms race. Actually, this rivalry has already begun and is in full swing: Russia, the United States, China, and possibly other countries are developing their own versions of hypersonic weapons.

USA is still lagging behind Russia

At the moment, Russia is the generally recognized leader in the development of hypersonic weapons. Even American experts themselves admit that the United States is still lagging behind Russia in the field of hypersonic weapons. For example, Russia has already developed the Avangard hypersonic missile, which, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin, is capable of breaking through the latest anti-missile defense systems. A hypersonic missile travels at a speed of more than Mach 20 and is capable of reaching any point on the planet.

As for the United States, so far the Americans do not have such weapons. However, its development is under way. At first, Donald Trump stated about "super-weapons that can fly 17 times faster than all available missiles." Then it became known about testing a prototype of a superfast rocket in March 2020. Similar work on hypersonic weapons is being carried out by China, which also expects to acquire its own superfast missiles.

The political ground for the creation and deployment of hypersonic missiles has long been ripe: one after another, agreements concluded in the past, in the midst of "disarmament", are being terminated, which means that formal barriers to a new arms race are also removed.

Each of the countries participating in the race understands that its lack of hypersonic weapons makes it as vulnerable as possible to potential opponents. Therefore, not only the United States, Russia and China, but also France is involved in the creation of hypersonic weapons. At the same time, according to some experts, it is not worth saying that all the listed countries have really seriously advanced in terms of creating hypersonic weapons.

This point of view, in particular, is shared by the French military expert Emmanuelle Maitre of the Strategic Research Foundation. According to Mater, hypersonic missiles only reduce the time it takes to strike: in the case of traditional ballistic missiles, it is about 30 minutes, and in the case of hypersonic missiles, it is about 10 minutes.

How are they going to use hypersonic missiles of the Russian Federation, the USA and the PRC

In addition, there is a fundamental difference in the approach to the use of hypersonic weapons. Russia views nuclear-charged hypersonic missiles as a reliable deterrent, showing that if a war starts with it, it will strike with missiles capable of breaking through any missile defense system.

We see approximately the same approach in the United States, only the Pentagon is thinking about how to penetrate the Russian air and missile defense system using hypersonic missiles. With information that the Russian air defense system is extremely effective and well-organized, the American military department relies on hypersonic missiles, the speed of which simply will not allow Russian air defense and missile defense to respond quickly.

China expects to use hypersonic missiles in conventional wars

Naturally, we are not talking about any kind of arms control in this case, since the American and Russian sides are interested in the constant improvement of hypersonic weapons, which is an ideal means of making the enemy think about the consequences of the outbreak of war. Moreover, American General Neil Thurgood claims: the program for the development of hypersonic weapons should be as aggressive as possible, otherwise Russia and China will not be able to adequately respond.

The Chinese military department has a different position: the Celestial Empire is thinking about the possibility of using super-fast missiles in local wars in Southeast Asia, for example, in the event of a possible conflict in the South China Sea. With the help of hypersonic missiles, the Chinese military expects to sink American aircraft carriers if they begin any aggressive actions against the PRC. That is, Beijing fully admits the possibility of using hypersonic weapons not only in a global war, but also in local armed conflicts.

However, as the author of the French edition of Le Figaro Nicolas Barotte writes, in the end the effectiveness of the use of hypersonic weapons will still be determined by the quality of reconnaissance and targeting. That is why the great powers pay so much attention to the development of the latest control systems, including promising research in the field of artificial intelligence.
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General atomics
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  1. voyaka uh
    voyaka uh 24 August 2020 10: 20
    "According to Mater, hypersonic missiles only reduce the time it takes to strike: in the case of traditional ballistic missiles, it is about 30 minutes, and in the case of hypersonic missiles - about 10 minutes" ////
    Wow! belay belay
    It's good that not in 10 seconds ... laughing
    1. Pessimist22
      Pessimist22 24 August 2020 10: 29
      And what is wrong?
      1. voyaka uh
        voyaka uh 24 August 2020 10: 55
        The fact that an ICBM reaches the USA from Russia in 30+ minutes. With a speed of 20+ MAX (equivalent in space).
        It is impossible to shorten this time by any means. If the speed of the ICBM is increased, the warheads will become Earth satellites.
        1. Ross xnumx
          Ross xnumx 24 August 2020 11: 27
          Quote: voyaka uh
          It is impossible to shorten this time by any means. If the speed of the ICBM is increased, the warheads will become Earth satellites.

          As I understand it in sausage:
          Avangard is a Russian missile system equipped with a guided warhead. The equipment is based on a guided warhead launched to a target using an UR-100N UTTH intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

          And only in the final section (something of the order of 5000 km is the famous hypersonic breakthrough of missile defense systems of a potential enemy (due to maneuvering at hypersonic speed) and the destruction of the target.
          Ultimately, the tactics and strategy of countries that have hypersonic weapons (if any) are approximately the same in nature: the destruction of targets, ignoring air defense systems that are unable to shoot down a hypersonic target.
          It is a different matter when hypersonic missiles with a range of up to 1500 km are intended to destroy ships. This simply leaves no chance of survival for the world-famous American AUG (with the massive use, which China is striving for with its industry, science and economy).
          I believe that with the advent of "hypersound" the US military dominance in the world will noticeably weaken.
          1. voyaka uh
            voyaka uh 24 August 2020 11: 42
            Have you heard about the forces of inertia? They act on any moving object: in the atmosphere, in space. The higher the speed, the higher these forces. Therefore, it is dangerous to make a sharp maneuver at high speed - you will fly away to the side and spin up .. This I am hinting to you about maneuvers when driving at hypersonic speeds. wink
            1. Andrei from Chelyabinsk
              Andrei from Chelyabinsk 24 August 2020 12: 04
              Quote: voyaka uh
              Therefore, it is dangerous to make a sharp maneuver at high speed - you will fly away to the side and spin.

              And he doesn't need to make sharp maneuvers - it's enough to fly not along a ballistic trajectory. The difficulty of hitting a hypersonic target is that you need to know the flight path in advance in order to meet it at the desired point. It works with ballistic, but if the trajectory is unpredictable, the air defense system will not have time to react
              1. voyaka uh
                voyaka uh 24 August 2020 12: 20
                ABOUT! You have formulated correctly. good
                The transition from a ballistic trajectory in space to a non-ballistic one at altitudes of 50-30 km is the essence of the Vanguard. From the outside it will look like the brightest meteor with a long tail of fire, moving horizontally high in the sky.
            2. Ross xnumx
              Ross xnumx 24 August 2020 12: 08
              Quote: voyaka uh
              I’m hinting to you about maneuvers when driving at hypersonic speeds.

              This is not for me, this is for the designers ... They are the "damned" ... laughing
            3. venik
              venik 24 August 2020 16: 13
              Quote: voyaka uh
              Have you heard about the forces of inertia?

              Yes, you heard, you heard! The question is ANOTHER! Namely: What is the speed and maximum permissible overload for attack missiles and anti-missiles!
              At the same time, to successfully intercept a target (with a probability of more than 0.75), actively maneuvering on supersonic (! it is supersonic, and not hypersonic, speeds) - interceptor missile should (!) have at least 20-25% higher speed and be able to maneuver with overloads 15-27% higher than its target !!!.
              I hope you understand WHY to create high-speed maneuvering shock a rocket - almost an order of magnitude easier than creating anti-missileable to intercept her?
              1. voyaka uh
                voyaka uh 24 August 2020 16: 31
                "WHY to create a high-speed maneuvering ..." ///
                No, it’s not clear.
                1) the interceptor missile intercepts, so it does not need a particularly high speed.
                (to intercept a tennis ball, you do not need to chase it - you need to accurately place a racket in its path smile )
                2) if a strike missile has captured a target, then it is risky to maneuver - the target can be easily lost during the maneuver. Therefore, the attack missiles make a series of predictable maneuvers before the final attack. They are famous. And the missile is intercepted precisely during the execution of these maneuvers.
                I write about RCC, mainly.
                1. venik
                  venik 24 August 2020 16: 43
                  Quote: voyaka uh
                  No, it’s not clear.
                  1) the interceptor missile intercepts, so it does not need a particularly high speed.

                  You are mistaken, my friend, you are not just mistaken, but deeply MISTAKED!
                  All this would be true (reality), if the goal did not MANEUVER! To UNDERSTAND this - try to simulate the interception of a rocket performing a primitive maneuver (two-period sinusoid) by an anti-missile with an active radar seeker (for example, a decimeter range, calculating a "meeting point" using the "3 points" method). With a high degree of probability, the interceptor missile turns out to be on the "catch-up course" .... Further - everything is decided by the difference in speed!
                  This is the SIMPLE option! But if you manage to build a mathematical MODEL (by the way, this is not very difficult, but it requires certain skills) - you will immediately understand the value of speed in interception, even on "collision courses"! hi
                2. Pavel57
                  Pavel57 25 August 2020 01: 20
                  Quote: voyaka uh
                  if the attack missile has captured the target, then it is risky to maneuver it - the target can be easily lost during the maneuver.

                  Why should the seeker lose a maneuvering target? Most anti-aircraft missiles have CGM or TGS that successfully track target maneuvers. Or it does the guidance station on the ground.
                3. Zaurbek
                  Zaurbek 25 August 2020 09: 00
                  As Comrade A. Khodarenok - the problem is also in the reaction speed when attacking BR and blocks with warheads. Spot-calculate the trajectory - launch a rocket at the meeting point with the required speed. And the slightest change in trajectory is no longer considered (now and in the near future)
                4. Alber alber
                  Alber alber 26 August 2020 00: 04
                  Somewhat different, but nevertheless, the caliber very calmly maneuvers to itself almost up to the meeting with the target, but in the final section the speed is already supersonic, well, the target is not lost, the map, inertial, gsn, glonass, all to help the defender of the Motherland good
        2. Svetlana
          Svetlana 24 August 2020 21: 06
          Quote: voyaka uh
          It is impossible to shorten this time by any means. If the speed of the ICBM is increased, the warheads will become Earth satellites.

          Conventional ICBMs move approximately along a parabola, at the upper (over 400 km altitude) point of which the speed is much lower than 7 km / s. Therefore, the flight time is 30+ minutes.
          To reduce the flight time, modern (more thrust-armed) ICBMs fly along a flat trajectory (altitude less than 400 km), the trajectory length is shorter than that of conventional ICBMs, and the flight time is shorter.
          The movement of a modern ICBM in near space, and then a hypersonic warhead in the upper layers of the atmosphere approximately parallel to the surface of the Earth can occur at a speed greater than the first space 7,9 km / s. In this case (in order not to become a satellite of the Earth) in near space the velocity of the rocket jet exhaust has a component directed radially from the Earth. And in the upper layers of the atmosphere, both jet exhaust directed from the Earth (when using a scramjet engine) and negative aerodynamic lift (due to a negative aerodynamic angle of attack) can be combined. This negative lifting force compensates for the excess (due to the high speed of the order of the first cosmic and higher) centrifugal force.
          1. voyaka uh
            voyaka uh 25 August 2020 07: 43
            Thanks for the interesting clarifications.
            Although in practice, it is hard to believe that maneuvers at the first space speed are actually carried out. Even a half-degree-degree turn will carry a missile or warhead thousands of kilometers at that speed.
            But you have to go back and hit the target.
            As far as I know, they prefer the good old ballistics and inertial in such a responsible business as an ICBM. yes
            And maneuvers - ... "theoretically possible"
            1. venik
              venik 25 August 2020 13: 38
              Quote: voyaka uh
              Even a half-degree-degree turn will carry a missile or warhead thousands of kilometers at that speed.

              Yah??? Directly in the thousands? laughing And if after (for example) 10 seconds the maneuvering engines are triggered, returning the missile / warhead to its previous course ??? HOW MUCH will it deviate? At a speed of 7 km / s, the rocket / block will deviate from the original trajectory by only 1.22 km, and can return to the original trajectory in 20 seconds, having flown 140 km (or, in terms of the initial trajectory, 139,98 km!).
              And in order to deviate from the target by 1 km, deviating from the original trajectory by only one angular degree - for this it is necessary that the rocket / warhead - fly along the trajectory (regardless of speed !), neither more nor less as much as 57 290 km !!! I hope it is unnecessary to explain that ANY ballistic missile cannot have such a range, and WHY! hi
            2. Alber alber
              Alber alber 26 August 2020 00: 09
              We are looking at the ISS, the orbit of which is regularly raised, this is what I mean, about the fact that "the BB is reliably controlled throughout the flight path"
              1. voyaka uh
                voyaka uh 26 August 2020 08: 55
                The satellites also lift as they gradually slide towards the Earth under the influence of gravity. The satellites usually have gas rudders. But this process takes weeks or months. And slowly corrected from the Earth.
                And the ICBM flies to the target for only half an hour. And its entire flight program is laid down before takeoff. Correction takes place according to the stars at certain points of the trajectory.
                1. Alber alber
                  Alber alber 27 August 2020 21: 39
                  Well, so the correction is taking place, that is, control, is it still or not? Decide already.
                  PS: About the obvious things, somehow "gas rudders" is not necessary to mention, it is clear that the same principle or another and with a different intensity works for mbr, bb mbr
    2. Pereira
      Pereira 24 August 2020 10: 32
      I guess Maitre shouldn't worry too much. Hypersonic weapons are not being prepared for France.
      With her, and ordinary missiles are enough.
    3. Shahno
      Shahno 24 August 2020 11: 37
      Yeah. They say near the surface at a speed of 10 max. laughing
      It will be even stronger than the "vaccine" ...
  2. Andrei from Chelyabinsk
    Andrei from Chelyabinsk 24 August 2020 10: 35
    After reading the "Avangard hypersonic missile" "I fell into a sediment and then mastered the article with great difficulty. Avangard is not a missile, it is an intercontinental ballistic missile warhead. And it is unique not because it is hypersonic (any block of ICBMs is hypersonic), but because it is maneuvering, which makes it an almost impossible target for any modern missile defense system.
    1. Cyril G ...
      Cyril G ... 24 August 2020 11: 15
      Deffachi designers rule everywhere ..... laughing
  3. Nikolaevich I
    Nikolaevich I 24 August 2020 11: 25
    The importance of hypersonic weapons as a strategic one is not as great as as a tactical and operational-tactical one! In fact, the appearance of the so-called hypersonic weapon is due to the increased requirements for tactical and operational-tactical weapons! "Strategic" warheads are already "hypersonic"! We can only talk about improved warheads for existing strategic launch vehicles!
  4. Viktor Sergeev
    Viktor Sergeev 24 August 2020 11: 35
    Well, to begin with, all ICBMs are hypersonic. Achieving hypersound in space is not difficult. The avant-garde itself is distinguished by its ability to maneuver on hypersound, and not fall along a ballistic trajectory. When they talk about hypersonic missiles, they often mean not ICBMs, but tactical ones, such as the Dagger and the mythical Zircon, that is, precisely about the "Chinese" version.
  5. Mikhail3
    Mikhail3 24 August 2020 11: 56
    That is, China demonstrates the most adequate approach, unlike us and the Americans, who are talking some crazy nonsense. Or are the Chinese simply more outspoken? Of course, the use of hypersound and the use of nuclear charges are far from the same thing. Moreover, the Americans used to speak frankly and without hesitation about this, stating that "you can charge a simple scrap" and, due to the gigantic kinetic energy, inflict huge damage on the enemy.
    Of course, those times were marked by a typically American wide swing - it was about the electromagnetic guns, which the Americans hoped to bring to use just a few days ago. When it became clear once again that higher engineering was not for savages, and it would not be possible to buy another engineer from truly developed countries, American enthusiasm perceptibly dried up. In their style, some loud statements were replaced by others, even louder ...
    All in all, it looks like China is hoping to start producing CHEAP hyper-missiles. On a massive scale. Modern China is quite capable of this. Then the rest of the participants in the "hyper race" will have to show their successes just as clearly, otherwise they will not lose their territories. Considering that the Americans only began working on the aerodynamics of hyper-missiles a couple of months ago, which means that they have nothing but PR, everything can be very funny ...
    1. 3danimal
      3danimal 24 August 2020 15: 26
      higher engineering science is not for savages

      US savages? good
      See the list of Nobel Prize winners in physics born there.
      1. Mikhail3
        Mikhail3 24 August 2020 15: 28
        I watched. Doesn't convince. It's like looking at a list of Olympic champions. Who was charged, who was modified, who was not found in doping ...
        1. 3danimal
          3danimal 25 August 2020 06: 30
          Following this logic, our laureates are also judged and do not deserve to be proud of them? And someone does not like the nationality of some of them. (This is not about you, but I had to face it)
          1. Mikhail3
            Mikhail3 25 August 2020 09: 04
            Theoretical exercises always lead to complete nonsense. Following the logic formally, you run into a dead end one hundred percent of the time. You do understand what I mean, right?) And you perfectly understand that neither the USSR, let alone Russia, in principle, can buy the same Nobel Committee, because this is not just a matter of money. Money is just a consequence ...
            And yes, yell "it's because I'm black man !!" shameful.
            1. 3danimal
              3danimal 25 August 2020 10: 07
              buy the same Nobel committee

              It's pretty simple. Even if half are paid for, there are still too many of them. In addition, you can read what research they received the Nobel Prize.
              The first aircraft engines in the Union are copies of the American ones, the projects of plants and equipment for them are from the States.
              The strongest navy - battleships, aircraft carriers in the first half of the 20th century - in the United States. And the battleship is the focus of technology of its time.
              Now - what processor is in your PC / laptop and smartphone? What operating system?
              One can enumerate for a long time .. The bottom line is that it is definitely ridiculous to blame them for their backwardness. Criticizing foreign policy is another matter.
              1. Mikhail3
                Mikhail3 25 August 2020 15: 55
                Well yes. True, the first aircraft engines in the Union are kerosene engines from the RussoBalt plant, the very ones on which the world's first combat aircraft flew - Russian, yeah. It's true about factories. Fuck a continental power with a powerful fleet? Prots? 80 percent is "Everest", dear) And I can also list for a long time. Sikorsky, Zvorykin, and even Tesla), etc. etc.
                In general, I was joking. In fact, I really respect, even adore, the Country of Engineers, which was the United States. The key word was "were". The United States voluntarily abandoned the method that brought their country to the top of the world. And now NOW they are a country of savages and thieves, fit only to ransom foreign engineers and scientists. And this is getting worse for them. All this is sad to horror, humanity is degrading, and faster and faster.
    2. Alber alber
      Alber alber 26 August 2020 00: 16
      A cheap hyper, this is a quasi-ballistic Dagger, everything is horizontally controlled, on any part of the path, not cheap, well, sobsno heat-resistant materials for prvd are also not a penny
  6. Gunther
    Gunther 24 August 2020 12: 02
    Quote: voyaka uh
    The fact that an ICBM reaches the USA from Russia in 30+ minutes.

    tovarisch, and how long will an ICBM fly from Tehran to your Knesset?
    and how are the successes of the Iranian comrades with hypersonic - trying?
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 24 August 2020 12: 31
      Iran has a medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM)
      The flight time to Israel is approximately 12 minutes. Israel also has a Yeriho MRBM.
  7. Runoway
    Runoway 24 August 2020 12: 15
    The goals are just different for everyone!
    If the RF and the PRC have this weapon of protection and consolidation in the region.
    For the United States, this is the retention of world domination.
    No one needs war, one cannot make money on the incinerated lands, and this is the main reason for wars. The world has long been divided into sales markets and the United States receives the lion's share, but such impudence that they decided to openly enter the European gas market by blocking the same SP-2 (we watch on TV every now and then, chewing hamburgers with cola)
    It is very profitable not to have competitors and dictate your own rules to the whole world, but they appeared and begin to snap back, with the same hypersonic weapons, no one is going to attack the USA, there are no such goals, there is a goal to avoid pressure from outside
    1. 3danimal
      3danimal 25 August 2020 10: 09
      The PRC is a weapon of protection and consolidation in the region.

      Namely, already beyond their borders, within which it becomes cramped.
  8. evgen1221
    evgen1221 24 August 2020 12: 19
    It is much cheaper to make cartoons, to promote as with Apollo and buy the authorities and opposition of the country of the owner of the weapon you need. Ams can do it.
    1. 3danimal
      3danimal 24 August 2020 15: 31
      make cartoons, promote like with Apollo and buy the authorities and opposition of the country

      Well, another person who believed that the United States deceived everyone, and the Union (with which there was a fundamental military-political confrontation) bought laughing
      And they made hundreds of thousands of people working on the project silent. And tens of thousands who watched the takeoffs ... were hypnotized? (Not without "Men in Black" smile )
      Do you by any chance believe in the World Conspiracy?
      1. evgen1221
        evgen1221 24 August 2020 16: 59
        To you covid is not proof of the global nay of the planet? Despite the fact that it is so deadly by this time, Africa should physically die out by 80%, but ???
        1. 3danimal
          3danimal 25 August 2020 06: 33
          So you say: how many thousand years is the conspiracy? And what about aliens? smile
          No kidding: there are world statistics on Covid. Among my acquaintances (all in the region of 30 years old) there are already those who have been ill.
          My opinion: Severe flu with increased contagiousness.
          1. evgen1221
            evgen1221 25 August 2020 10: 11
            Exactly! But in no way attracts to such a terrible horror that because of this country to plant isolation.