China tested ‘nuclear capable hypersonic missile’, says report

What is the News?

China’s military has carried out its first-ever test of a “nuclear capable hypersonic missile”.

What is a Hypersonic Missile?

Hypersonic speeds are those that exceed five times the speed of sound, that is, anything that can move at speeds of Mach 5 or above, which means at least 1.6 km per second. 

Types of Hypersonic Missiles: There are two types of hypersonic missiles. 

Hypersonic cruise missiles: These are the ones that use rocket or jet propellant through their flight and are regarded as being just faster versions of existing cruise missiles. 

Hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) missiles: This is the one that China has tested. They are launched on rockets and then orbit the earth at their own speed. They are difficult to track because, unlike ballistic missiles, they “do not follow the fixed parabolic trajectory”.

Note: Countries like the US, Russia and China are developing hypersonic glide vehicles.

What about India?

India too is working on hypersonic technologies. In September 2020, DRDO has successfully flight-tested the Hypersonic Technology Demonstrator Vehicle(HSTDV) with a capability to travel at 6 times the speed of sound. 

In December 2020 an advanced Hypersonic Wind Tunnel (HWT) test facility of the DRDO was inaugurated in Hyderabad. It is a pressure vacuum-driven, enclosed free jet facility that simulates Mach 5 to 12.

Source: This post is based on the following articles 

  • China tested a ‘nuclear capable hypersonic missile’, says a reportpublished in The Hindu on 18th October 2021.
  • Explained: China’s hypersonic glide vehicle test” published in Indian Express on 18th October 2021.
Print Friendly and PDF