France building ‘INVINCIBLE’ 4,000mph missile in race against Russia, China and US to build hypersonic weapons

France building ‘INVINCIBLE’ 4,000mph missile in race against Russia, China and US to build hypersonic weapons

February 10, 2019

The French Defence Ministry is aiming to create the hypersonic glider missile within the next two years.



This would mean that France would be the first European nation to develop a weapon that flies at least five times the speed of sound (3,800mph).

"Many countries are acquiring them (hypersonic weapons) and we have the know-how to develop them,” Defense Minister Florence Parly announced.

“We could no longer afford to wait.”

The high speed of the futuristic missile would give France an edge over anti-missile sensors and interceptors designed against older and slower missiles.

"The goal is high-speed manoeuvrability,” explained a report by France’s DGA defense procurement agency.

“That’s how it differs from a ballistic trajectory. Once the initial speed is reached, we can play with speed and altitude to move up and down, to the left and to the right, creating a trajectory that is more difficult to intercept.”

HYPERSONIC ARMS RACE

France is now competing against the US, China and Russia to produce the world’s first hypersonic missile.

Russia’s Avangard nuclear-armed glider, mounted on board an SS-19 intercontinental ballistic missile, has already been fired at targets.

It could carry a warhead, experts say, but even without explosives its sheer speed – more than a mile a second – gives it the force to obliterate any target.

On Friday, the US Air Force’s secretary Heather Wilson revealed the US is close to completing a weapon that can travel five times the speed of sound (3,836mph).

China could unleash the world's most powerful naval gun that fires missiles at seven times the speed of sound in just six years, US intelligence insiders claim.

The hypersonic railgun, which is said to be capable of striking targets 124 miles away, was successfully tested last year, according to Chinese media.

And now sources with direct knowledge of a US intelligence report told CNBC that the space-age weapon will be ready for war by 2025.

CHINA HAS 'WORLD'S MOST POWERFUL RAILGUN'

If the reports are correct, Beijing will have beaten the world in developing the superweapon.

Rumours first circulated last year when images shared on social media showed the Haiyang Shan being loaded with the oddly shaped weapon.

And last month, a hazy image of the ship sailing on the open ocean has been released on China’s tightly controlled social media networks.

The images suggest Beijing has beaten the United States and Russia to getting the next generation weapon into operational testing.

CNBC claims the railgun was first seen as early as 2011 and underwent testing in 2014.

Between 2015 and 2017, the weapon was reportedly calibrated to strike at extended ranges, making it even more deadly.

DEADLY WEAPON

By December 2017, the weapon was successfully mounted on a warship and began at-sea testing.

According to The Drive, official US reports suggest the Chinese cannon can hit targets nearly 125 miles away, and the People's Liberation Army plans to have their navy equipped with the weapon by 2025.

A railgun is a type of weapon that uses powerful electromagnets to accelerate projectiles to very high speeds.

Conventional weapons typically use explosives or propellant to launch ammunition, but electromagnetic forces make it possible for a railgun to achieve a much higher "muzzle velocity".

This means that while a normal gun might manage a projectile speed of around 2km/s, a railgun could blast out projectiles 50 per cent faster, at at least 3km/s.

It also means that you don't need to transport explosive propellants or warheads, which could make a railgun-toting warship much safer than traditional vessels.

Several contractors attempted to build a railgun system for US ships for years, including BAE Systems, which created a prototype.

The gun was mooted to shoot projectiles at speeds of more than Mach 7 – that's seven times the speed of sound – over a range of 100 miles.

But the project was eventually scrapped due to budget issues and a lack of interest.









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