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    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile

    Sujoy
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    Post  Sujoy Wed Feb 15, 2023 3:22 am

    GarryB wrote:Having the air come in at supersonic speeds and flow through the engines and burn fuel and come out the rear would allow much much higher flight speeds... that is the value of a scramjet... and why it is so ground breaking for high speed flight.
    R-37 AAM is able to maintain hypersonic speed right from launch all the way upto the target, isn't it?

    The R-37 is probably also qualified to shoot down enemy hypersonic cruise missiles.
    Tolstoy
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    Post  Tolstoy Wed Apr 05, 2023 4:41 am

    GarryB wrote:Some of the fastest missiles around are the ABM missiles the Russians use in the ABM system around Moscow... missiles that travel much faster than the 3km/s that Zircon can manage, though they are all solid rocket... but even then if it can't manouver then how could it hit an incoming target?
    Perhaps the only counter to hypersonic missiles like Zircon is directed energy weapons. So upgraded versions of Zircon will probably take that into account and devise ways to circumvent DEW weapons perhaps by virtue of being more maneuverable. Maybe new materials will be used to design upgraded versions that can withstand DEW. Maybe new version will cruise at high hypersonic speed.

    Right now NATO can only use EW against Zircon. Not sure to what extent EW is effective against hypersonic missiles though.
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    Post  lancelot Wed Apr 05, 2023 6:26 am

    Zircon is at best Mach 10. You can probably use a multiple stage solid to intercept it. Think of something like the Sprint missile.
    The cost of designing a defense system would likely be horrendous, and it would have poor range though.
    Isos
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    Post  Isos Wed Apr 05, 2023 7:44 am

    Directed energy weapons aren't a solution. Thry work vest at close range and you need to focys the beam for some time before destroying the target.

    Hypersonic missiles like Zirkon fly only few seconds in their engagement zone.

    And the kinetic energy will still send the missile on its target or close by unless you destroy the warhead.

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    Post  Arrow Wed Apr 05, 2023 8:19 am

    Zircon is very resistant to the high temperatures that occur at hypersonic speeds.

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    Post  Hole Wed Apr 05, 2023 10:40 am

    So we are back to square one in the discussion or what?
    The main point of Zircon isn´t the speed but that it reaches that speed inside the atmosphere,
    keeps that speed from launch to impact.and can maneuver the whole time.

    No current western air or missile defence system is capable of hitting maneuverable targets at that speed.
    The ABM systems can only hit straight moving targets while the AD systems can not reach the height and
    can´t match the speed + maneuvering of Zircon.

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    Isos
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    Post  Isos Wed Apr 05, 2023 2:21 pm

    Well directed energy weapons have the speed of light so Zirkon speed and manoeuvring isn't an issue, they will always be able to direct their enery on it.

    But for ABM system, even a 3° correction of zirkon will switch the interception point few km away and the interceptor missile won't be able to catch it. For this you are right.

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    lyle6
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    Post  lyle6 Wed Apr 05, 2023 3:09 pm

    The actual interception means might have the speed of light but DEW still have very considerable tracking and weapon cycling times. A Zircon would eat up the distance very quickly once it climbs over the horizon, even powered traverse might have trouble catching up.

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    Post  Isos Wed Apr 05, 2023 3:31 pm

    That's what I am saying. The laser or micro wave weapons will target it fairly easily but it will go through their engagement zone too fast and they won't have time to "burn" it.

    The DEW loose energy over the distance. Best ranges achieved today are few km against drone like technology which is plastic and not some harder stuff like metal alloys or new anti laser stuff that could be used to envelop the front to protect electronics parts and warhead.

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    GarryB
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    Post  GarryB Wed Apr 05, 2023 9:26 pm

    R-37 AAM is able to maintain hypersonic speed right from launch all the way upto the target, isn't it?

    The R-37 is a solid fuelled rocket with two stages of rocket fuel... high energy high acceleration fuel to climb to altitude and get to high speed and then a longer burn lower energy fuel to maintain speed and altitude till it reaches its target to dive down onto to attack.

    It will accelerate very quickly to about mach 6 and then maintain that speed at very high altitude and then dive on its target.

    Most of its targets will be aircraft or cruise missiles whose comparative speed is almost stationary, but against very high speed targets it does not have to match or exceed the speed of its target.... just like a cricket bat or tennis racket does not need to move faster than the ball to intercept it in flight.

    The R-37 is probably also qualified to shoot down enemy hypersonic cruise missiles.

    and
    Zircon is at best Mach 10. You can probably use a multiple stage solid to intercept it. Think of something like the Sprint missile.
    The cost of designing a defense system would likely be horrendous, and it would have poor range though.


    The hypersonic weapons their enemy has do not manouver which makes them rather easier to intercept... imagine a tennis ball coming over the net at you... it has speed but does not change direction mid flight so its trajectory and path are predictable... but if the opposition tennis player made you think they were hitting the ball directly at you and instead at the very last second they hit the ball towards the opposite side of the court to which you are standing you don't have time to get to a position where you can reach the ball, and that is the problem manouvering hypersonic weapons create... they can change direction quickly but their flight speed means the intercept point will then shift perhaps hundreds of kms in a split second and you were already streaking at high speed towards the original intercept point you might not have the time or the fuel to reach the new intercept point so you miss.

    It is not just a question of being able to match the speed of the incoming threat, it is matching the 4D intercept point... latitude, longitude, altitude, and time... if any one of those is wrong then you miss... I can go an stand on the spot below where the US nuclear bomb destroyed Nagasaki, but because the time is not the same I wont be killed by that nuclear blast.

    But for ABM system, even a 3° correction of zirkon will switch the interception point few km away and the interceptor missile won't be able to catch it. For this you are right.

    Exactly... with it moving at 3km per second even half a second late or early and you miss by over 1km, which means even a nuclear warhead might not stop the missile, but a small turn shifts the intercept point several kms and it will take a second or two to realise the turn and the effect on its flightpath and to calculate a new intercept point so now your interceptor has to calculate how to turn the missiles already fired to go to the new intercept point by the new intercept time... the target missile might turn in a way that shortens the flightpath of the missile you have launched, so it might need to wiggle and manouver to try to slow down so it does not blow past the new intercept location too early... early or late is a miss.

    By which time the sensors on the Zircon might have detected the active radar signals from the approaching SAM which triggers its autopilot to turn away from the signal and climb a little which further shifts the intercept point again several kms in a different direction and at a higher altitude... it is probably already flying at 40-50km altitude anyway, which is already a problem for most conventional SAMs.

    There will need to be a lot of work done on directed energy weapons to solve this problem... simply mirrorising the nose might be enough to deal with lasers... reflecting away enough energy so it does not heat up very much at all...

    For ICBMs one solution was to make them spin which meant the laser could not focus on any part of the skin for longer than half a second as it rotated out of sight...

    Another solution was to have a layer of a high temperature glass that was transparent and filled with a coloured liquid... the laser beam passes through the transparent outer layer but the energy of the laser is absorbed heating the liquid, which means it does no damage at all.

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    Post  owais.usmani Sat Apr 22, 2023 1:29 pm

    https://t.me/militaryrussiaru/5251

    The frigate of the Russian Navy "Admiral Golovko" on the roads of Severomorsk.
    Ship March 31 this year arrived at the Northern Fleet for sea trials. "Admiral Golovko" is the first full-time carrier of hypersonic cruise missiles "Zirkon". The frigate is expected to test this missile on April 25-29, 2023 in accordance with the announced NOTAM.

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    Post  Hole Sat Apr 22, 2023 3:58 pm

    Here we are again. lol1
    Golovko is the first "full-time carrier".
    The next Gorshkov class vessel will be the "first serial produced full-time carrier" of Zirkon. Rolling Eyes

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    Post  Hole Thu Feb 29, 2024 6:03 am

    Vladimir Putin also noted the successful use of the Zircon sea-based hypersound system in the special operation zone.

    https://tvzvezda.ru/news/20242291228-RpqLA.html

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    Post  Arrow Thu Feb 29, 2024 12:07 pm

    Very interesting where it was shot from. From the north? This would mean that its range is much greater than 1000 km. From the Black Sea. Does this mean that they have already adapted 21631 to launch Tsirkon? However, Russia risked using Tsirkon in Ukraine.

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    Post  Hole Thu Feb 29, 2024 12:28 pm

    Definitely from the Black Sea. Which means either one or more of the UKSK carriers or the Bastion complex were already "modified".
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    Post  GarryB Thu Feb 29, 2024 9:46 pm

    However, Russia risked using Tsirkon in Ukraine.

    A real operational test would be valuable, and even if the warhead failed to explode it will be hitting the target at 3km/s so the kinetic energy alone would hide the aerodynamic nose shape and the scramjet engine configuration and design.

    Their might be new alloys and materials for them to find, but nothing that will help them much.

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    Post  PhSt Thu Feb 29, 2024 10:00 pm


    Since the INF has expired, I don't see any reason to hold back the development of a land based version of Zircon.

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    Post  Hole Fri Mar 01, 2024 5:51 am

    The current version is intended for the usage in the Bastion complex instead of the Onyx missile.

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    Post  Isos Fri Mar 01, 2024 12:58 pm

    Any new missile/launcher will be design to be used from ground or ships anyway.

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    Post  LMFS Sat Mar 30, 2024 10:59 am

    MoD confirms the (to my knowledge) first operational use of the Tsirkon in their report of combat activities for the period between 23-30th March 2024

    https://function.mil.ru/news_page/country/more.htm?id=12507001@egNews

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    Post  GarryB Sun Mar 31, 2024 4:18 am

    The thing is that the UKSK vertical launch system for the Russian Navy is called a universal missile launch system.

    So any new missile will be designed to be launched from the UKSK system because that is what it is for.

    The ZIrcon replaces the Onyx and is essentially the same missile with the ramjet of the Onyx replaced in the Zircon with a scramjet which offer and enormous boost in flight speed... meaning the nose of the missile will be modified in shape to deal with the very high speed airflow and will be made from new materials of course, but otherwise, a solid rocket booster that accelerates the missile in the direction of the target to then fall away and the main jet engine of the missile lights up and powers the missile away to high speed and high altitude.
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    Post  Arrow Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:38 am

    aning the nose of the missile will be modified in shape to deal with the very high speed wrote:


    Unfortunately, the available photos of the poor quality of Tirkon show that the nose of the rocket is not modified in the way you describe and is often described as such.
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    Post  Scorpius Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:44 am

    Arrow wrote:
    Unfortunately, the available photos of the poor quality of Tirkon show that the nose of the rocket is not modified in the way you describe and is often described as such.
    Who told you that you have up-to-date data that has not been corrected?))

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    Post  Arrow Mon Apr 01, 2024 11:36 am

    Who told you that you have up-to-date data that has not been corrected?) wrote:

    Yes this way they could test different aerodynamic concepts. In one photo, the concept looks like most hypersonic missile concepts.

    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile - Page 38 7ZVj1Ns
    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile - Page 38 Cb410aa8e21f

    There is also an air intake concept similar to the Onyx.

    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile - Page 38 30-12050869-161210796266392617

    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile - Page 38 07-11295593-flolzz9wqaa6pwc
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    Post  GarryB Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:20 pm

    You do understand that looking at a shape from different angles can lead you to think it is different shapes.

    If you look at the Su-34 nose from directly above or directly below it looks a rather different shape than it does from the front.

    The intake for the Onyx is round and is a ramjet engine and is rather similar to the nose engine intake for the MiG-21, but a round curved air intake is to complex to model for the intake flow models so most scramjet air intakes are likely to be rectangular with the nose of the missile being chisel shaped to ride the hypersonic bow wave the missile creates for itself.

    If you look at the first two images these are take from the side and show the chisel nose shape... sometimes called a wave rider... very much not new... look to rather old images of hypersonic bomber designs and you see the same shape used.

    The bottom image differs in being taken from above and behind a flying missile... presumably before it accelerated out of view so the nose looks rounded... but it is a rounded chisel shape...

    Even from the side and above it looks like this:

    3M22 Zircon Hypersonic Cruise Missile - Page 38 Ircon10

    But it is the underside that is the critical shape the west really wants to see to copy.

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