Aug 14 (Reuters) – The head of Russia’s largest shipbuilder told RIA news agency in an interview published on Monday that Russia is in the process of equipping its new nuclear submarines with Zircon hypersonic missiles.
“The multi-purpose nuclear submarines of the Yasen-M project … will be equipped with the Zircon missile system on a regular basis,” Alexey Rakhmanov, CEO of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC), told RIA.
Work in this direction is already underway.
The Yasen-class submarines, also known as Project 885M, are nuclear-powered cruise missile submarines built to replace Soviet-era nuclear attack submarines as part of a program to modernize the army and fleet.
The Zircon hypersonic missiles at sea have a range of 900 kilometers (560 miles), and can travel many times the speed of sound, making them difficult to defend.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said earlier this year that Russia would begin massive supplies of Zircon missiles as part of the country’s efforts to boost its nuclear forces.
The Russian multipurpose frigate Admiral Gorshkov, which tested its strike capabilities in the western Atlantic earlier this year, is already equipped with Zircon missiles.
(Reporting by Lydia Kelly from Melbourne); Editing by Simon Cameron Moore
Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
“Infuriatingly humble analyst. Bacon maven. Proud food specialist. Certified reader. Avid writer. Zombie advocate. Incurable problem solver.”