— OedoSoldier (@OedoSoldier) October 17, 2020
The video could be the first visual evidence that China is actively testing an air-launched hypersonic weapon. Video has emerged out of China showing what appears to be an H-6N missile carrier aircraft with a massive weapon slung underneath it. The unique wedge-shaped profile of the missile’s forward section points to the possibility that the missile is a hypersonic weapon system. In particular, the form factor looks similar to the one found on China’s ground-launched DF-17 hypersonic weapon, which uses a ballistic missile to boost an unpowered DF-ZF hypersonic boost-glide vehicle to a velocity well over Mach 5 before the vehicle continues on maneuvering path through the atmosphere to its target. You can read our previous post on the DF-17 here.
China’s work on air-launched adaptations of their ground-launched ballistic missiles is not necessarily new. An air-launched DF-21D anti-ship ballistic missile is thought to have been in development for some time. The pursuit of an air-launched hypersonic boost-glide vehicle weapon by China should be expected, as well, but this could be the first time we are actually seeing it.
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WNU Editor: You got to love those plane spotters at airports. They reveal more than what the Chinese military wants you to see …. China releases footage of its air force conducting a live-fire drill after President Xi urged his army to ‘focus on preparing for WAR’ (Daily Mail).