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Current Affairs

India building hypersonic missiles

Date: 25 October 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

An US Congressional report has said that India is one among select countries developing hypersonic missiles.

 

Background

There were widespread concerns when the news about China testing hypersonic missile came out. The new report further enhances the existing concerns.

 

Details

  • A media report had recently said that China had successfully demonstrated a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile.

  • Eventhough it could not hit the target, it demonstrated an advanced space capability. Intelligence agencies were entirely caught off-guard.

 

The report

  • The report was brought out by the independent Congressional Research Service (CRS), which says that US, Russia and China possess the most advanced hypersonic weapons programmes.

  • It also says that countries such as India, Australia, France, Germany and Japan are also developing hypersonic weapons technology.

  • India has collaborated with Russia in developing the Mach 7 capable BrahMos II missile while Australia is working with USA.

  • India has also developed the dual-capable indigenous hypersonic cruise missile as part of its Hypersonic Technology Demonstrator Vehicle programme.

 

HIFiRE

  • Hypersonic International Flight Research Experimentation is collaboration between US and Australia to develop hypersonic technologies.

  • The HIFiRE test conducted in 2017 has demonstrated a Mach 8 hypersonic glide vehicle.

  • Southern Cross Integrated Flight Research Experiment (SCIFiRE) will be the successor to HIFiRE.

 

Other programmes

France is also collaborating with Russia in developing hypersonic technology. Japan is working on Hypersonic Cruise Missile (HCM) and the Hyper Velocity Gliding Projectile (HVGP).

 

The US programme

The US is focusing on developing hypersonic glide vehicles from a rocket before gliding to a target and also hypersonic cruise missiles.

 

BrahMos II

  • BrahMos II is a joint project between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation and Russia's NPO Mashinostroyenia, 

  • The mission was supposed to deliver the result in 2017 but it is currently facing delay and the missile may be ready during 2025-28.