Zircon hypersonic cruise missile – UPSC Prelims

  • Zircon is a Hypersonic Cruise Missile developed by Russia.
  • It has been called as one of the invincible missiles by the Russian President.
  • The missile flies with an advanced fuel that the Russians say gives it a range of up to 1,000 kilometers.
  • The missile speed is also so fast that the air pressure in front of the weapon forms a plasma cloud as it moves, absorbing radio waves and making it practically invisible to active radar systems.
  • The Zircon will join the Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle that was put into service in 2019 and the air-launched Kinzhal (Dagger) missiles in Russia’s arsenal.
  • Significance for India: This successful test of Zircon is being termed as good news for India as it will hasten the development of the delayed BrahMos-II hypersonic cruise missile, a joint India-Russia project.
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