Arms Race

New Era of Arms Race in the 21st Century

Arms Race, The hypersonic Missiles are an addition to the new arms race. Picture this a fast, agile weapon that is almost impossible to stop and could carry a nuclear warhead. There are no rules about who can have hypersonic missiles, which means they`re being made and refined at an astonishing rate, so a three-way arms race could already be underway.  

Since the start of the nuclear age, the Arms Race has been living among weapons that could technically destroy the world several times. In the 1960s and 70s, there were billions of dollars poured into nuclear and chemical ones. At the peak of the Cold War, the US and the former soviet union had more than 60000 nuclear warheads between them. That number is now down to about 11000 thousand. However, to put that into perspective, blowing up just 100 nuclear weapons would cause severe famine and expose everyone to high levels of UV radiation. 

 Arms Race

The world is facing a new era of the arms race

The hypersonic Missiles are an addition to the new arms race. One reason nuclear threat was and is still kept in check is the idea of mutually assured destruction. Any nuclear launch by Russia would result in an immediate retaliation by the US, causing catastrophic destruction to both nations; however, the hypersonic missiles are upending that principle.

Hypersonic missiles are challenging to defend against the world’s most advanced air defense systems. The world can’t calculate the math fast enough to intercept these weapons, mainly because they can maneuver, which poses real strategic issues for missile defense.  

Describing something as hypersonic means it flies much faster than the speed of sound that speed is otherwise known as Mach 1 which means that the distance it could cover is about 1,225km/h in seven minutes.  

For decades in 1949, an American bumper rocket reached a speed of 2.3 kilometers per second which is about seven times the speed of sound. Several decades later NASA made a demo version of what it called a rocket plane which could theoretically fly eight times the speed of sound but the project was never finished. In 2004 NASA successfully flew its hypersonic experimental vehicle or hper x just below seven times the speed of sound. Pretty much all the intercontinental ballistic missiles in existence can also be considered hypersonic because they reach speeds above the mark 5 however all of those examples could only travel at those speeds for a short period.

Until now the technology that allows for a sustained hypersonic fight is here. The hypersonic missile technology is not new intercontinental missiles have been around since the 1960s and they have part of their flight trajectory is hypersonic The difference with an intercontinental ballistic missile is that it follows a predictable path. The ballistic missile is launched on a large rocket and flies on a predictable trajectory determined by gravity that basically takes them out into space and then back into the atmosphere again while on the other side

if we compare that to hypersonic missiles they`re launched on smaller rockets that keep them within the upper reaches of the atmosphere there they can maneuver around unpredictably and in the final few seconds of flight dive and strike a target that atmospheric sweet spot means they`re only detected in the final stages of flight. 

 Arms Race

The hypersonic Missiles are an addition to the new arms race. In current times there are two types of hypersonic missiles being developed. First, a hypersonic glide vehicle or HGV relies on a rocket to reach a high altitude. It then glides to its target along the upper atmosphere maneuvering along the way. The second hypersonic cruise missiles also travel at a lower altitude. The difference is they`re powered by a high-speed jet engine called a scramjet which allows them to quickly change course and be fired from more places like jets and submarines. 

Russia and China have made some serious inroads into hypersonic technology. The df-17 a ballistic missile specifically designed to launch a hypersonic missile was on display during China`s 2019 military parade and they tested two nuclear-capable hypersonic missiles that circled the globe in 2021.  

The world is facing a new era of the arms race 

The Kremlin says it used what`s called a Kingshill hypersonic missile which means dagger in Russian during the invasion of Ukraine targeting an ammunition warehouse in the country`s west. The US military intelligence has suggested Russian forces have used them repeatedly since.  

These attacks would mark the first-ever use of hypersonic missiles in combat. They`re a Kinzel hypersonic weapon that they used in Ukraine twice now is the 9k 720 Iskander short-range ballistic missile that they started developing way back in 1988 so Russia’s hypersonic efforts aren`t all they`re made out to be however China`s very.  

Russia and China have openly said that their investment in hypersonic weapons is to counter American influence China`s RND structure is so robust that they pose probably the most potent threat in the hypersonic arena.  

 Arms Race

The US Department of Defense has requested 4.7 billion US dollars for hypersonic weapons research and that`s on top of the 3.8 billion they asked for last year and they`ve already done a few successful tests. 

With Iranian-made drones playing an increasing role in Russia`s war in Ukraine the Islamic Republic just unveiled its newest advanced weapon capabilities. Commander of Iran`s Revolutionary Guards Aerospace Division announced they developed a hypersonic ballistic missile that can penetrate even the most advanced air defense systems. According to the commander, this system is very fast and capable of maneuvering inside and outside the atmosphere.  

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