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Russia, US at par in hypersonic research: Deputy PM
September 30, 2013, 8:38 am


Boeing’s Waverider achieved the longest hypersonic flight by a jet-fuel powered aircraft in May [AP]

Russia is not lagging behind the United States in the research of hypersonic military technologies, says Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.

“Both we and the Americans conduct researches about hypersonic technologies, or speed that is more than six times above the speed of sound. This is not a secret, but everything else is. I can tell you that we are running neck and neck with the Americans as far as these technologies are concerned,” Rogozin said in an interview with the Rossiya 1 TV channel.

The deputy prime minister is also in charge of the country’s defence industry.

Weapons enabled with hypersonic technology would be able to reach and destroy targets anywhere in the world within a very small amount of time.

Boeing’s X-51A Waverider made history in May this year when it achieved the longest hypersonic flight by a jet-fuel powered aircraft.

The US Air Force said the four X-51As were built to demonstrate the new technology and the programme is aimed at paving the way to future hypersonic weapons, hypersonic intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, and future access to space.

According to media reports, building upon expertise from the Waverider, the US Air Force is teaming up with the military’s Defence Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) on a new project to test the capabilities of hypersonic flight.

“We had a very successful flight with X-51, showing hypersonic speeds,” US Air Force Chief Scientist Mica Endsley told

“We’re currently setting up a follow-on programme on that with DARPA that will be a joint Memorandum of Understanding” added Endsley.

Meanwhile, Rogozin noted that Russia is the world’s second weapons exporter after the United States and vowed that Russian defence enterprises would increase the quality of their products while keeping prices at an acceptable level.

Russia plans to boost annual defence spending by 59 per cent to almost three trillion rubles ($97 billion) in 2015.

However, a new report by released by think-tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) shows emerging powers are still a long way off from the US and its European allies in military spending.

“The US remains dominant,” said Sam Perlo-Freeman, Director of SIPRI’s Military Expenditure and Arms Production Programme said.

“Along with its allies, it is still responsible for the great majority of world military spending. The US and its NATO allies together spent $1 trillion on their militaries” said Perlo-Freeman.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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