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U.K.: Russia Launches Hypersonic Zircon Missiles from Land

U.K.: Russia Launches Hypersonic Zircon Missiles from Land

The wreckage of a missile from the missile attack on the 7th of February 2024 had parts that belonged to the new Zircon (Tsircon) cruise missiles, according to Ukrainian authorities. U.K. MoD has pointed out the modified K-300 Bastion as the potential launch platform for the missile as there aren’t nearby warships to launch the missiles. This assumption might be correct for a few reasons.

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Suppose the claims are confirmed either officially or visually. In that case, this move can be seen as an alternative way of getting the new hypersonic cruise missiles into launch position by an alternative route. Russia is most likely concerned about having its warships armed with Zircon missiles be exposed to Ukraine’s kamikaze USVs and coastal defence missiles.

K-300 Bastion coastal defence missile launchers usually fire P800 Onyx/Yakhont supersonic cruise missiles at 8.9 m in length and three tonnes in weight. There have been instances of the missiles from K-300 being used to strike land targets during the war.

3M22 Zircon is currently used on ships with the UKSK vertical launch system, which also supports P800 Onyx missiles. It can be inferred that the two missiles are most likely identical in launch dimensions, further supporting the possibility of K-300 being capable of firing the hypersonic missile. Russian officials also openly stated that Zircon would eventually start being used on land platforms in the past.