3M22 Zircon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
3M22 Zircon
Type Anti-ship hypersonic cruise missile
Air-launched cruise missile
Submarine-launched cruise missile
Land-attack missile
Place of origin Russia
Service history
In service In production
Used by Russia
Production history
Designer NPO Mashinostroyeniya
Produced 2012–present
Length 8-10 m

Engine Scramjet
Fuel capacity 600 miles (970 km)
1,000 km (540 nmi; 620 mi)
Speed Mach 8 (6,090 mph; 9,800 km/h; 2,722.3 m/s)
Aircraft, submarines, ships, and ground-based TEL systems

The 3M22 Zircon[1][2] also sometimes spelled 3M22 Tsirkon (Russian: Циркон, NATO reporting name: SS-N-33)[3] is a maneuvering anti-ship hypersonic cruise missile developed in Russia.[4][5] Its latest successful launch was on June 3, 2017, almost a year earlier than had been announced by Russian officials.[6]


Prototypes were test-launched first from a Tu-22M3 bomber in 2012-2013. Launches from a ground platform followed in 2015, with first success achieved in 2016.

In April 2017, it was reported that the Zircon had reached a speed of Mach 8 (6,090 mph; 9,800 km/h; 2,722.3 m/s) during a test.[7]

In November 2017, Colonel General Viktor Bondarev stated that the Zircon missile is already deployed in the Russian Armed Forces.[8]


The Zircon is believed to be a maneuvering, winged hypersonic cruise missile with a lift-generating center body. A booster stage with solid-fuel engines accelerates it to supersonic speeds, after which a scramjet motor in the second stage accelerates it to hypersonic speeds.[5][9] The missile represents a further development of the HELA (Hypersonic Experimental Flying Vehicle) developed by NPO Mashinostroyeniya[10] that was on display at the MAKS Air Show in 1995.

The Zircon's range is estimated to be 135 to 270 nautical miles (155 to 311 mi; 250 to 500 km) at low level, and up to 400 nmi (460 mi; 740 km) in a semi-ballistic trajectory;[11] average range is around 400–450 km (250–280 mi; 220–240 nmi).[12] According to state-owned media, the longest range is 540 nmi (620 mi; 1,000 km) and for this purpose a new fuel was created.[13][14][15]

The Zircon can travel at a speed of Mach 5–Mach 6 (3,806–4,567 mph; 6,125–7,350 km/h; 1,701.5–2,041.7 m/s). Such high speeds have led to concerns that it could penetrate existing naval defense systems; the Royal Navy's Sea Ceptor surface-to-air missile is only capable of intercepting targets flying up to Mach 3.[16][17][18]

The missile will be incorporated into the Kirov-class battlecruiser Admiral Nakhimov in 2018, and the Pyotr Velikiy in 2022. The ships will have their P-700 Granit anti-ship missiles replaced with 3S-14 vertical launch systems capable of holding P-800 Oniks and Kalibr missiles as well as the Zircon; each battlecruiser will be equipped with 72 such missiles.[19] After the upgrade, the battlecruisers can carry 40–80 anti-ship missiles of different types.[20] Admiral Grigorovich-class frigates will have possibility to carry 8 while the Admiral Gorshkov-class frigates 16 Zircon missiles.[21][22] The missile may be used also by the planned Lider-class destroyer as well as by other undersea and aerial platforms including the Yasen-class, Husky-class attack submarines[21] and the Tu-160M2, Tupolev PAK DA strategic bombers.

In flight, the missile is completely covered by a plasma cloud. This cloud absorbs any radio waves and makes the missile invisible to radar.[19][22] Missiles exchange information in flight and can be controlled by commands if necessary.[23]


A version for export should have its range limited under 300 km in compliance with the MTCR[11] or up to 400 km.[13]



See also


  1. ^ http://www.navyrecognition.com/index.php/focus-analysis/naval-technology/3810-analysis-3k22-and-3m22-zircon-the-next-generation-hypersonic-missile-of-the-russian-navy.html
  2. ^ https://sputniknews.com/politics/201708221056695530-russia-hypersonic-missiles/[unreliable source?]
  4. ^ "Russia develops hypersonic 4,600 mph Zircon missile". Fox News. 1 April 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Эксперт рассказал о суперспособности ракеты "Циркон" преодолеть системы ПРО". РЕН ТВ. 15 April 2017.
  6. ^ Marsden, Harriet (3 June 2017). "New Russian missile 'makes Western defences obselete'". The Independent. Retrieved 5 June 2017.
  7. ^ "Russia's hypersonic Zircon anti-ship missile reaches eight times speed of sound". TASS. 15 April 2017. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  8. ^ "Бондарев: ВС РФ имеют гиперзвуковые ракеты "Циркон" и ракеты донного базирования "Скиф"". TASS. 21 November 2017. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  9. ^ "Российские ракеты «Циркон» делают американский «Джеральд Форд» «авианедоносцем».  | Блог Малюта | КОНТ". cont.ws.
  10. ^ Ivanov, Yuri (17 April 2017). "Гиперзвуковая ракета "Циркон" ослабит позиции США" (in Russian). ОРУЖИЕ РОССИИ. Retrieved 6 June 2017.
  11. ^ a b Russia and India Test Hypersonic and Supersonic Missiles - Ainonline.com, 25 April 2017
  12. ^ Dave Majumdar (2016-04-22). "Russia's Lethal Hypersonic Zircon Cruise Missile to Enter Production". nationalinterest.org. The National Interest Blog. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  13. ^ a b "Для гиперзвуковых крылатых ракет в России создано принципиально новое топливо". vesti.ru. Вести. 2017-05-19. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  14. ^ "Российские ракеты «Циркон» делают американский «Джеральд Форд» «авианедоносцем». | Блог Малюта | КОНТ". Cont.ws. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  15. ^ "Ракеты «Циркон» окончательно определили технологическое превосходство России над США". ruspolitica.ru. Русская политика. 2016-10-28. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  16. ^ Mizokami, Kyle (2016-04-26). "Russia's Putting Hypersonic Missiles on Its Battlecruisers". Popularmechanics.com. Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  17. ^ Caroline Mortimer. "Royal Navy's new aircraft carriers cannot stop Russia's new hypersonic Zircon missiles". The Independent. Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  18. ^ Britain Admits that Russian Missiles Can Blow Its New Aircraft Carriers Out of the Water - Nationalinterest.org, 30 April 2017
  19. ^ a b Виктория Фоменко (2016-05-17). "Опаснее «Калибра»: Россия начала испытание гиперзвуковой ракеты «Циркон» - Газета Труд". trud.ru. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  20. ^ "Начались испытания гиперзвуковой ракеты "Циркон"". rg.ru. 2016-03-17. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  21. ^ a b "Российская ракета "Циркон" достигла восьми скоростей звука". rg.ru. 2017-04-15. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  22. ^ a b "В России успешно провели испытания новой гиперзвуковой ракеты «Циркон», не имеющей аналогов в мире". 1tv.ru. 2017-05-21. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  23. ^ "«Циркон» выходит на рабочую скорость". vz.ru. 2017-04-17. Retrieved 2017-07-17.
  24. ^ http://tass.ru/armiya-i-opk/4746647

Further reading

  • Hypersonic missile "Zircon" why NATO is afraid of new Russian weapons (Russian)
  • Hunting in Russian "Zircon" (Russian)

Retrieved from "https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=3M22_Zircon&oldid=868276404"
This content was retrieved from Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3M22_Zircon
This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article "3M22 Zircon"; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA