South Korea launches development of Hycore hypersonic missile
According to information published by the “HANI.CO.HR” website on January 7, 2022, South Korea has announced the development of the Hycore hypersonic missile to respond to the threats of North Korea. This week, many international media reported the successful launching of a hypersonic missile by North Korea that could a threat for South Korea and Asian countries.
Citing the “HANI” website, this is the first official confirmation that South Korea was developing hypersonic weapons. The South Korean Ministry of National Defense announced that it intended to make a “requirement decision” about hypersonic warheads to provide strategic deterrence against the threat of various weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons, in a military-wide meeting of senior commanders in December 2020.
In December 2021, South Korea has unveiled the development of the Hycore hypersonic missile in collaboration with the South Korean Agency for Defense Development (ADD) and the company Hanwha Defense.
According to a video released on the Twitter account of Vinod, on December 7, 2021, the new South Korean Hycore hypersonic missile will be launched from a ground station and the design of the missile seems very similar to the American X-51 Waverider hypersonic missile.
According to open sources information, the concept of the prototype Hycore hypersonic cruise missile includes a two-stage solid-fueled booster and scramjet engine. The first tests of the missile are scheduled for 2022.
Citing a US Congress report, several countries are developing hypersonic weapons, which fly at speeds of at least Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound). There are two primary categories of hypersonic weapons including Hypersonic glide vehicles (HGV) which are launched from a rocket before gliding to a target and Hypersonic cruise missiles which are powered by high-speed, air-breathing engines, or “scramjets,” after acquiring their target.
Hypersonic missiles can be maneuverable and travel at approximately 5,000 to 25,000 kilometers per hour, or one to five miles per second. In more familiar terms, these missiles fly six to more than 25 times as fast as modern airliners. They fly at unusual altitudes— between a few tens of kilometers and 100 kilometers. These characteristics of high speed, maneuverability, and unusual altitudes make them both challenging to the best missile defenses now envisioned and, until the last minutes of flight, unpredictable as to their targets.