The Russian Ministry of Defense announced yesterday that it used the “Dagger” air-launched hypersonic missile to hit an ammunition depot in the Ivano-Frankivsk region in southwestern Ukraine, making the Dagger the world’s first hypersonic weapon to be used in actual combat.
The Kinzhal hypersonic missile was launched by the Russian Ministry of Defense in 2017. It is the world’s first hypersonic weapon in service. The missile body and launch rocket are modified based on the 9K720 Iskander-M short-range ballistic missile. , the maximum speed can reach Mach 10-12, and the range can reach 2,000-3,000 kilometers depending on the launch platform.
This missile can be carried by the Mig-31 supersonic fighter bomber, Tu-22 bomber or Su-57 stealth fighter. During the flight of the military aircraft with a maximum speed of Mach 2.3 to 2.83, the dagger missile is launched to increase the speed and range, and the missile after reaching the supersonic speed, It can also perform dodging maneuvers to avoid interception by most active anti-aircraft missile systems.
Although the outside world is not surprised that the Russian army dispatched dagger missiles, they are puzzled that the war was delayed until recently. Because hypersonic weapons are expensive to manufacture, they should theoretically be used to hit important targets of the Ukrainian army on the first day of the war, such as radar stations and commanders. Centers, air defense systems, etc., but the Russian army mostly used rockets, Iskander ballistic missiles and 3M-54 Kalibr cruise missiles in the days before the battle.
The US media The Drive pointed out that although the Russian artillery has the ability to strike targets in western and southwestern Ukraine, but because of fear of the Ukrainian air defense system, it is quite conservative in dispatching fighters to attack missions, mostly long-range missiles.
Since the Russian army did not use fighter jets to attack, most of the previous attacks on western Ukraine had no video records, and only the northern, eastern and southern fronts could be guided by drones.
The dagger attack picture released by the Russian Ministry of Defense, judged by the shooting height and speed, should be shot by the Orlan-10 unmanned reconnaissance aircraft, but the maximum range of this drone is 140 kilometers, which can be increased to 600 if it flies with an offline preset path. km, but cannot capture live images.
Therefore, even if Dagger missiles are fired from the pro-Russian breakaway areas on the border of Kyiv, Odessa, or the borders of Moldova, the Transnistia area, the Orland-10 UAV has no way to fly to the Iraqi claimed by the Russian army. Recorded in the Vano-Frankivsk region.
Therefore, The Drive compared the Russian Ministry of Defense video with the topography of the commercial satellite company Planet Lab map and found that the actual attack target area should be located in the Udon Donbas region, which can better explain why the dagger’s first attack The results can be recorded by Orland-10.
In response to CNN’s inquiries, U.S. Pentagon officials also confirmed the Russian military’s launch of the Dagger missile, saying that the U.S. military had full knowledge of the missile launch during the launch.
The Russian army only started using the Knife missiles in the fourth week of the war. Most foreign media judged that the inventory of Russian cruise missiles and ballistic missiles was insufficient after four weeks of war, forcing the Russian military to use it at the risk of being detected by the U.S. military. Hypersonic weapons.