Hypersonic missile

  • IASbaba
  • September 30, 2021
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Hypersonic missile

Part of: Prelims and GS II – International Relations and GS III – Sci and tech 

Context North Korea has successfully tested a new hypersonic glide missile. 

What is a hypersonic missile?

  • Hypersonics are defined as being able to travel at velocities of at least five times the speed of sound — Mach 5, or more than 6,100 kilometres (3,800 miles) per hour. 
  • They can also manoeuvre in mid-flight, making them much harder to track and intercept than traditional projectiles.
  • By cutting flight times, they also reduce the opportunity to respond.
  • Depending on the design, they can be capable of carrying nuclear warheads or conventional only, and have the potential to alter the strategic balance.

Which countries possess them? 

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