Patriot intercepts Kinzhal hypersonic missiles
May 17, 2023 -
Russia has hit, though likely not destroyed, a Patriot battery after
Ukraine claimed to have used the U.S.-made missile defence system
to shoot down six Kinzhal hypersonic missiles.
Hypersonic missiles travel at up to ten times the speed of sound, and are designed to evade missile defence systems, partly through their speed, low trajectory, and manoeuvrability, and also due to the formation of a plasma cloud in front of the missile which interferes with radar waves.
Russia claims it is impossible for a Patriot system to intercept a Kinzhal travelling at hypersonic speeds.The optimum point at which to intercept a Kinzhal would be shortly after launch, before it has attained hypersonic speed or begun evasive manoeuvres. The range of the Patriot radar is only 150km, well below the Kinzhal maximum launch range of 2,000km.
- Stealth Plasma Could Challenge 75 Years of Air Defense Strategy (Interesting Engineering)
- Russia Rubs It In With Fierce Kinzhal Attack On Patriot Battery In Kyiv; Aerospace War Heats Up In Ukraine (Eurasian Times)
- Kyiv says it shoots down volley of Russian hypersonic missiles (Reuters)
- US-supplied Patriot air defence system 'damaged' in Russian barrage on Kyiv (Daily Telegraph)
- Can Ukraine use Patriot defense systems to knock out Russian hypersonic missiles? (Reuters)