Skip to comments.Hyperfast missile to hit anywhere in an hour
Posted on 04/24/2010 6:36:14 PM PDT by Touch Not the Cat
HAUNTED by the memory of a lost opportunity to kill Osama Bin Laden before he attacked the World Trade Center in New York, US military planners have won President Barack Obamas support for a new generation of high-speed weapons that are intended to strike anywhere on Earth within an hour.
Obamas interest in Prompt Global Strike (PGS), a nonnuclear weapons programme, has alarmed China and Russia and complicated nuclear arms reduction negotiations.
White House officials confirmed last week that the president, who won the Nobel peace prize last year, is considering the deployment of a new class of hypersonic guided missiles that can reach their targets at speeds of Mach 5 about 3,600mph.
That is nearly seven times faster than the 550mph Tomahawk cruise missiles that arrived too late to kill Bin Laden at an Al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan in 1998.
The ability to attack a wide range of targets at intercontinental range, promptly and without resort to nuclear weapons, is of central importance to US national security, said Daniel Goure, a defence analyst at the Lexington Institute in Virginia.
The new weapon could be launched from air, land or sea on a long-range missile travelling at suborbital altitudes above 350,000ft. The missile releases a hypersonic pilotless plane that receives updates from satellites as it homes in on its target at up to five times the speed of sound, generating so much heat that it has to be shielded with special materials to avoid melting.
(Excerpt) Read more at timesonline.co.uk ...
This system will never be put into service (Or at least until 0 is out of office for a few years). The system will be hit with budget cuts.
He could use it on regime dissidents.
Exactly. No weapon would kill Bin Laden if the resident doesn’t have the man parts to give the order.
“Waco... with missiles.”
This is quite disturbing. I wonder why any person in the military of the US would give him this info. Is Gates behind this info? If he shared this, then he is at total fault...
Great idea, but really difficult to develop.
I worked on a program to investigate the feasibility of building one of these about 15 years ago. AFAIK all the designs are based on Scramjet technology, which is useful but has many challenges to implement for a missile.
The control system challenge is not to be taken lightly, too. Controlling a missile traveling that fast is really challenging.
How much of an efficiency gain do you get when you are running at hypersonic speeds and riding your own shock wave?
Doesnt an ICBM take only about 30 minutes to go to the other side of earth. Cant they carry non-nuclear warheads?
We’ll have to wait for CIC Palin to see if this works.
“...has alarmed China and Russia...”
Who gives a rat’s *ss.
I too fear he plans to use such weapon systems in-Country on revolting peasants.
“That is nearly seven times faster than the 550mph Tomahawk cruise missiles that arrived too late to kill Bin Laden at an Al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan in 1998.”
It had nothing to do with the speed of the missile. The Clinton regime tipped off OBL’s buddies.
“How much of an efficiency gain do you get when you are running at hypersonic speeds and riding your own shock wave?”
I don’t know about the shock wave part of it, but the scramjet effect is to take in huge amounts of air. The issue is that the engine can’t light off until it’s in the range of its cruise speed. You can get it to that speed but it takes a huge amount of fuel (not efficient) or an airborne launch from a high-speed aircraft (lots of control issues at launch).
That’s not a missile.
You're right. It's a delivery system.
Just put it on a ballistic missile and launch. It’ll be there in an hour or less or your next delivery is free!
He's dead, Jim.
“Is this similar to this one that the Russians and Indians have been working on:”
But physics is physics and they are fighting the same challenges the US or anyone else is. I’m not saying it’s impossible, it’s just one of those programs that will take an enormous effort to ever get it working. So far the funding and interest hasn’t been there.
For example, what will the airframe be made out of? The speeds we are talking about here are way more than an SR-71 ever flew, for example. You have to make an airframe that can sustain hundreds of degrees for an extended period of time. That means hotspots will be 1000+ degrees, and internal temps can be impossible to keep electronic and other components from melting down.
That just scratches the surface of the issues involved in getting a 5,000 mph missile operational. I’m interested to see if it ever comes aobut.
“You’re right. It’s a delivery system. “
It could be a delivery system but that doesn’t solve the problems with developing a 5,000 mph missile.
The CNN anchors were cooing over this thing just the other day. I think the announcement is another Obama head fake, timed to offset public unease about our nuclear disarmament. CNN’s talking point was that it could hit Osama’s hiding place in Afghanistan, a notion that the Dems have been cynically peddling for a while now in place of a real, muscular commitment to fighting terror. This is just an extension of that.
“I think the announcement is another Obama head fake, timed to offset public unease about our nuclear disarmament. “
That makes sense.
This has as much chance of being deployed, as U.S. Citizens have of stepping on the Moon or a planet before 2100, if Obama gets his way.
Nope, even at orbital velocity (18,000 MPH) it still takes 90 minutes to go around the earth.
An ICBM traveling at near-orbital velocity may be in flight for 30 minutes, but it only makes it about 5-6000 miles distance, maybe a quarter of the way around the earth, in that time. There's also the ascent and descent time to figure in...