THE first test of a hypersonic aircraft that could carry “unstoppable” nuclear warheads at staggering speeds of 4,563mph has been deemed a “huge success” by Chinese scientists.
The cutting-edge aircraft was fired into space using its unique shockwave propulsion system, an experimental design known as a waverider.
During its flight the aircraft maintained speeds above mach 5 (3,806 mph) for 400 seconds and reached a top speed of Mach 6, or 4,563 mph.
A statement issued by the China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics (CAAA), which oversaw the testing process, said the flight was a “huge success” in a statement on Monday.
“The test … has laid a solid technological foundation for engineering applications of the waverider design,” it said.
The aircraft, which landed in a designated target zone, was recovered “whole”, CAAA said.
The Starry Sky-2 is still in the experimental stage, but when completed, the waverider technology would be used to penetrate any missile defence system in the world with nuclear warheads.
Zhou Chenming, a military analyst from Beijing, said the weaponised version of Starry Sky-2 could be ready to be deployed by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) within a few years.
The Pentagon, under US President Donald Trump, is especially “worried” about computer guided cruise missiles and hypersonic missiles that can reach staggering speeds of Mach 5 or 3,5000 mph and above, Mr Clark said.
Full article: ‘Huge success’: China tests 4,563mph hypersonic aircraft that can fire ‘UNSTOPPABLE’ nukes (Daily Star)