It has been reported that the United Kingdom intends to design and deploy its own hypersonic cruise missile by the year 2030.

This is part of an aim to match the capabilities of global powers such as China, Russia, and the United States, The Telegraph reports.

The project seeks to develop a missile that can travel at speeds exceeding Mach 5, which is five times faster than the speed of sound. According to The Telegraph, the Ministry of Defence  is intent on ensuring the missile is both designed and manufactured within the UK, with aspirations to have it operational by the end of this decade.

The development of a hypersonic weapon, which significantly surpasses the speed of conventional cruise missiles, could potentially allow the UK to bypass modern air defence systems due to its rapid speed and ability to manoeuvre mid-flight.

Details on the launch platform for the hypersonic missile remain undecided, with options including deployment from land, fighter jets, or warships. The plans are reportedly in the preliminary stages, and the Ministry of Defence has refrained from offering extensive comments due to the sensitive nature of the technology involved.

A spokesperson stated, “We are pursuing hypersonic technologies to further develop UK sovereign advanced capabilities. We continue to invest in our equipment to meet current and future threats.”

Not out of nowhere

This confirmation that a missile is in development hasn’t appeared out of the blue, I reported last year that the Ministry of Defence had launched an initiative to advance its Hypersonic Strike Capability, as detailed in a contract notice on the GOV.UK ‘Find a Tender’ service. Published on December 8, 2023, under the reference 2023/S 000-036268, the notice details the “Hypersonic Technologies & Capability Development Framework”.

This framework, as stated in the notice, is to accelerate development of the United Kingdom Hypersonic Strike Capability and to provide a route to market for future operational elements of hypersonic and adjacent technologies.” The initiative, estimated to be worth £1 billion and spanning up to seven years, is not just focused on developing advanced weaponry but also aims to “facilitate collaboration between MoD, industry, and academia.”

The procurement will cover a broad range of services and supplies across eight distinct lots. It includes “research, systems, components, technology, the provision of infrastructure, testing, and other related expertise and materials.” These will encompass both ‘functional components’ such as “propulsion systems, airframes, flight control computer systems, guidance systems and sensors” and ‘non-functional components’ like “test and evaluation, platform integration, academic research.”

The framework is designed to be flexible, allowing for the “periodic onboarding of new suppliers approximately every 6 to 12 months,” ensuring it remains relevant in a “fast changing political, technological and regulatory landscape.”

Here’s the description.

“As part of the Team Hypersonics (UK) delivery strategy, the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) intends to establish a multi-supplier Hypersonic Technologies & Capability Development Framework Agreement (the Framework). The aim of the Framework is to accelerate development of the United Kingdom Hypersonic Strike Capability and to provide a route to market for future operational elements of hypersonic and adjacent technologies. The Framework will be used to facilitate collaboration between MoD, industry and academia to accelerate the acquisition of an advanced Hypersonic Strike Capability.

The nature of the procurement will involve the provision of services and supplies across 8 (eight) distinct lots. Descriptions of each of the lots are further identified within this notice and the draft Invitation to Tender (ITT) documents, accessible through the Defence Sourcing Portal (DSP). The Framework will be used to appoint suppliers to deliver services and supplies to support the research, development and testing of hypersonic technologies with varying Technical Readiness Levels (TRLs). The maturity of the services and supplies provided under the resulting Call Off contracts will be up to TRL 9.

Services and supplies to be procured through the Framework are likely to include, but will not be limited to research, systems, components, technology, the provision of infrastructure, testing and other related expertise and materials across two categories, ‘functional components’ and ‘non-functional components’. Functional components could include liquid propellants, solid propellants, propulsion systems, airframes, flight control computer systems, guidance systems and sensors, communications and data links systems, system and parts integration, physical flight control systems, warheads, power supply and distribution, battery, actuators (fin & thrust control), high temperature materials and seekers. Non-functional components could include test and evaluation, platform integration, academic research, system design authority, modelling and simulation, specialists, integrated solution, thermal management, infrastructure, mission planning, assurance.”

Applicants for the framework will also participate in a “Restricted” procurement process, initially responding to a Pre-Qualification Questionnaire, accessible through the Defence Sourcing Portal. Successful applicants will then be invited to the Invitation to Tender stage.

The notice specifies that “Task orders under the Framework will be awarded as Call-Off contracts, either through a Mini-Competition or, in certain circumstances, through a Direct Award process.”

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Math
Math (@guest_814745)
1 month ago

Join the V-Max?

Meiyo
Meiyo (@guest_814814)
1 month ago
Reply to  Math

VMax is a demonstrator for a hypersonic glider for the SLBM.
Not a conventional hypersonic path.

Rob N
Rob N (@guest_814749)
1 month ago

Does this mean the Anglo-French missile will be subsonic or have we gone for our own option instrad.

Nathan
Nathan (@guest_814756)
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob N

I was wondering that too. Last I’d heard was that one of the options for FC/ASW was hypersonic.

Elio
Elio (@guest_814765)
1 month ago
Reply to  Nathan

The latest on FC/ASW was a subsonic land attack ready in 2028. And a supersonic anti ship ready for 2034. No idea how this hypersonic missile fits into that plan and no idea how they plan on managing it by 2030

Jim
Jim (@guest_814796)
1 month ago
Reply to  Elio

The hypersonic missile is just a gag designed to keep china the USA and Russia wasting their money on chocolate fire guards. FC/ASW won’t be affected.

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_814869)
1 month ago
Reply to  Elio

Yes, I heard the same. I could see the supersonic one developing into something hypersonic potentially, but this hypersonic weapon wasn’t on the FC/ASW lists that I’ve seen.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814980)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

My gut take is that FC/ASW is the predictable achievable plan and this programme is reflecting the increasing perception that a hypersonic missile may well be required by 2030+ and this is thus trying to create all the mechanisms required to make it happen in addition to the current Anglo French missiles. Such a missile would likely be for high end targets otherwise less susceptible to other types of missiles so it’s unlikely you would ever wish to only have a hypersonic option just as in aircraft you want a mix of 4th and 5th Gen airframes. Somewhat surprised mind… Read more »

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_815030)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Ah, sorry, was replying to one of your other comments- looks like you and I envisage a similar use for these hypersonic missiles!
I agree, unless there’s something significant we don’t know, in service by 2030 is a stretch. Unless we buy something American off the shelf.
I’d have thought that the French would be interested in a hypersonic FC/ASW 2 extension programme, so like you I’m a little surprised we haven’t gone that route. Maybe they don’t have the budget for it at the moment..?

Rudeboy
Rudeboy (@guest_815056)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

French focus on hypersonics is primarily on the ASMP replacement.

They keep that very compartmentalised for obvious reasons.

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_815070)
29 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

That’s fair, I can understand them wanting to keep that to themselves. And given where we are, our hypersonic requirements probably aren’t going to be directly applicable between the two.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker (@guest_814751)
1 month ago

Expensive. Is it really needed now?
What we have seen is the USA weapons are super expensive. The U.K. missile needs to be cheaper if enough are to be bought. Able to scale the size so it can fit in F35b bay, tempest, torpedo tube, submarine VLS, ships also.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814797)
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I agree, Storm shadow is 20 years old and appears to be almost 100% effective against S400. FC/ASW will be a generation beyond SS. Hypersonic weapons are a gimmick. Stealth and low level, low cost fielded in numbers will always be superior to high speed high altitude high cost.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_814834)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Problem is you need both.

A lot of FC/ASW and then the next generation.

Otherwise you end up with a warmed version of Storm Shadow…..at some point that is obsolete.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814852)
1 month ago

It’s the $100 million dollar cost of a hypersonic weapon vs the $1 million cost of a stealthy cruise missile. The Hypersonic’s will need to be 100 times more effective to justify their price tag. Also as computers get smarter so too will cruise missiles able to perform swarm attacks or loiter where as hypersonics are always going to have limitations in how much they can deviate from a course, loitering and swarming will always be effectively impossible.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814983)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Misses the point it’s horses for courses it’s not about a one for one replacement you use a hypersonic for very high end well protected targets or with other missile types though in far fewer numbers to increase the overall effectiveness of the combined attack.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy (@guest_815058)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

It’s not going to be $100m a round.

It won’t be cheap but there is no reason why a rocket powered hypersonic should not be a ‘reasonable’ cost.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814982)
29 days ago

Totally right.

Barry Larking
Barry Larking (@guest_814844)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

In view of known facts about the performance of any likely enemy, I am with you. As far as I understand hypersonic missiles would have issues connected to the plasma wave they create around them at high mach numbers.

Jonno
Jonno (@guest_814900)
1 month ago
Reply to  Barry Larking

These things are devastating against infrastructure. Russia being wide open to attack on account of its size would be more easily deterred if we possess them.
Would you be able to rely on the USA in 5 years let alone 10 years time?
Perhaps a marker to join an AUSUS hypersonic.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814926)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonno

I think the post WW2 USA is largely a thing of the past, isolationism will just continue to grow, I don’t think anyone should be banking on US security guarantees or even weapon supplies in future. No a major issue for the UK with the exclusion of Trident D5 and its replacement. I think we should start our own SLBM program now maybe buy the design for M51 from the French but build our own version. Congress is too powerful now and there are just too many cooks that can throw a spanner in the works for little to no… Read more »

Frank62
Frank62 (@guest_814955)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Isolationalist USA is a delusion the USA has from time to time. Then something bites it hard on the ass & it becomes responsable again. I can’t see much more dangerous than a Trump Putin fanboy presidency who behaves like a spoilt kid well out of his depth in a paddling pool. With Russia & China making mischeif, hopefully this spell will pass.
UK included, Europe needs to pull its weight & responsabilities. Combined there’s enough resources to oppose Putin given the leadership & wisdom, which is more the problem we have.

Last edited 1 month ago by Frank62
Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814989)
29 days ago
Reply to  Frank62

Indeed Europe has ten times the economy of Russia and a far larger population, we really should combined be able to piss in their Baltic Sea to paraphrase Monty Python without US support should that ever dissipate. With Trump sating apparently in 2020 that He as President would never come to Europes aid in a war in Europe we certainly have to take that risk very seriously. Mind you the image of Putin hacking around on his Scottish golf links might change his mind, if he still has a mind by then.

Math
Math (@guest_814970)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

That would surely be closely examined by any French president or any majority that would come out of elections. No issue for an increase of cooperation with UK from any side of electoral corp in France. The fact that we currently are the only nuclear power of the EU is a chance, but not 100% perceived this way by Europeans of fellow countrymen. One thing is sure: we don’t want UK loosing it’s nuclear submarine deterrent. As far as I am concerned, I am looking for the 3rd component to reemerge (ground to ground missile + tunnels) for France &… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814988)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Seems like Taylor Greene can practically do it on her own with her conspiracy mutterings.

Steve R
Steve R (@guest_815049)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

TBH I think we should build new missiles alongside the French. They must be planning on renewing their own SSBN deterrent sometime in the near future.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814987)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jonno

I was wondering that, you have to have something to offer if you are going to interest the Americans.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814986)
29 days ago
Reply to  Barry Larking

True which is why Russian missiles (all but the Avangaard anyway) slow down before impact. However some new US missiles won’t be doing that not that I know how they get around the sensor situation but one presumes advances or work arounds can be effective though that’s what they are presently testing and information is of course limited, they just said last months demonstration was a ‘success’ without any real details and that’s of a missile that everyone thought had been cancelled but now think may not be the case so much is speculative presently. By the way the US… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_815086)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

There is so much bad info out there about hypersonic it’s just baffling. For one at least in US doctrine, they are not there to replace other missiles but their mission is the prosecution of high value, time sensitive targets in denied environments. Also there have been articles published years ago where US military officials have publicly stated that this “plasma shield” does not affect their ability to communicate with the weapon. It’s very easy to find this statement via google.

DaveyB.
DaveyB. (@guest_815102)
29 days ago
Reply to  Netking

A lot depends on the design of the hypersonic vehicle. Which can dictate how and where the plasma is generated. It normally starts on the nose of the vehicle and then the leading edges of wings/fins. The density of the air also has a major factor on plasma generation. The higher you go the air becomes less dense, so the plasma being generated can also be thinner. For example a vehicle travelling Mach 7+ at sea level is very likely going to generate a thick plasma, whereas at 250,000ft perhaps not so much. Atmospheric plasma is made up from disassociated… Read more »

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_814928)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Totally agree. I think we should spend money on the ability to knock these things out however anything more than another version of Storm Shadow seems pointless at this time.

Math
Math (@guest_814973)
29 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

Not sure. Our air defense (Aster) is giving a hard time to Houtis missiles. Otto melara 76mm fun works. German Guépards works. May be Sky et and Cam will work perfectly as well. So, even if Russia fooled itself with crappy air defense, nothing proves that China will be crappy as well. If not, we need something that will win, first time, for sure. Naval operation are so unforgiving…

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker (@guest_815014)
29 days ago
Reply to  Math

Nothing can be doubted with Chinese. Every defence has to work first time. One thing Europe and the USA do seem to do is lots of testing and then understating the results.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814990)
29 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

Well if you don’t do the research now you won’t have a choice to make come the 30s.

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_815000)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

True. A Tempest like project might to me seem like a natural project for that sort of injection of cash. I suppose there has been some work in this direction already so I suppose – why not.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814981)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Don’t totally agree while slower stealthier missiles can do most of the donkey work there will be tougher targets especially in the next decade where sophisticated hypersonics will be very desirable and possibly essential even. The missiles that the US is developing are a generation or more ahead of current Russian missiles. Equally while SS has been successful don’t be fooled by the complexity of the operations to make it so a lot of spoofing and planning goes into their flight paths to avoid as much air defence as possible and in some complex circumstances and targets they are unlikely… Read more »

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_815001)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Russian developments might well depend on how they get on in Ukraine. If Russia loses they might be in trouble for a while. Their economy will tank and everyone is losing interest in fossil fuels. China is a different problem – they have a plan and the US seems to be taking it personally.

Expat
Expat (@guest_815097)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Some of the so call Hypersonic missles are just ballistc missles with a glide vehicle. Yes they’re hypersonic but a huge nunmber of ballistic missiles are. So I guess it depends which way we go.

Another issue is launch tubes, MK41 is too small to launch a decent hypersonic missile and why a new launch system is being developed by Lockheed for the Zumwalts and Virginias. We’ll have launch platform problem.

nicholas
nicholas (@guest_814800)
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Expensive and a lot of time to manufacture. If we are looking at this from a policing or limited ‘war’ then stockpiles of missiles might be managable. When it comes to an all out peer conflict missile stock would be exhausted within a couple of weeks or even days. The is also something to be said for the throw weight capable of old style naval guns.

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_814870)
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I’d be deeply surprised if we get a hypersonic weapon that will fit in the F35B bay, the kinzhal and other existing weapons are huge. They need the size to fit the fuel and motor big enough to maintain the speed over any kind of useful distance.

Patrick C
Patrick C (@guest_814899)
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

the Stand In Attack Weapon based on the AARGM (modern HARM) fits in an f-35 bay, travels at mach 4 and is available now. lets face it there is not a difference between mach 4 and mach 5 aside from a marketing buzzword.

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_814948)
1 month ago
Reply to  Patrick C

Well, a minimum of 25% increase in speed just to be considered hypersonic is indeed a difference, it’s considerable.
I don’t know the range or the warhead of the SIAW, but realistically it wants to be similar to Storm Shadow to be a strike missile worth the expense of developing it to go hypersonic in the first place. That warhead, and that much fuel to do Mach 5+ is easily going to be the same size as Storm Shadow.
That’ll never fit in an F-35 bay, whichever model.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814993)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

I tend to agree with that generally but one has to also take into consideration the damage a hypersonic missile does even without a warhead at that speed and propulsion technology is progressing well beyond SS in efficiency. But yes the size equation is still relevant here.

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_815028)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

That’s very true- high velocity bits of steel are very much damaging on their own! I’m imagining that this weapon will be the top tier replacement for Storm Shadow- hitting the real high value targets (equivalent of the Kerch bridge, various bunkers, etc.), so a sizeable warhead is probably still going to be a pre-requisite. One of the other things we need to consider is just how effective cluster munitions have been, both DPICM artillery and the ATACMs, for Ukraine. We have nothing that comes close, and I feel that’s lacking. Being a signatory on the cluster munitions convention is… Read more »

steve
steve (@guest_815150)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

I know this is not on topic but I couldn’t agree more re: cluster munitions.
It would appear to me to be very cost effective way of starting to address our deficit in artillery capability.
I know it wouldn’t be popular with many, but could we not just pull out of the convention?

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_815176)
28 days ago
Reply to  steve

I know, they seem to do a good job. I can certainly understand the concerns with them too though- the possibility of injuries to civilians from duds was a genuine risk. In my view, the convention was over-eager; they didn’t see a possibility that reliability of the submunitions could be improved to a point where the risk of duds was low enough, so they just outright banned them. The US was wiser, didn’t sign up to it, but put a strict standard for sub-munition reliability. The older DPICM shells still don’t meet that standard, as far as I know, but… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_814961)
1 month ago
Reply to  Patrick C

Hypersonic is widely agreed to be mach 5+. They don’t reach mach 5 and call it a day. The US army’s LRHW has a published speed of mach 17 and a range of 2775km. Depending on which weapon you’re referring to, the difference between something like the aargm and a modern hypersonic weapon is not even worth comparing.

Math
Math (@guest_814975)
29 days ago
Reply to  Patrick C

Thing is the results of the Harm were not very impressive in Serbia in the 90 »s. A French pilote, Ate Shuet, now a YouTuber stated that success rate was 1,65%. Harm Bach then meant that you did get 3 battery shoot down for 200 missiles. If we have nothing else, ok, but… perhaps it would be wise to pursue the development of smothering better.

Netking
Netking (@guest_815065)
29 days ago
Reply to  Math

So you believe a random former pilot on the internet compared to several studies and testimony from Serbian soldiers who openly admitted that they had to turn their radars off out of fear of being targeted by the HARMS?

Math
Math (@guest_815073)
29 days ago
Reply to  Netking

I don’t know. I think that if Serbian’s were able to avoid being destroyed by Harm missiles by turning on and off air defense, it is wise to assume counter measures progressed, even if the Harm missile is better now. So, I would rather be cautious with this very fast missile, not so big warhead that was not able to fulfill it’s mission properly. Let’s put it this way, I would not over rely on this system and I would prefer to have a backup, just in case. There is this other system, ground based that rely on GPS guidance,… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_815078)
29 days ago
Reply to  Math

“Destruction is a bit better in my opinion than temporary switch off.” I agree with this. You are forgetting one thing however. If a HARM missile forces you to turn your radar off then it has already accomplished it’s mission. Also be aware that the aargm-er is a much more sophisticated weapon that uses a tri-mode seeker which means gps jamming will be almost useless against it. Add to that fact is that it can target radar emissions from over 200km away, it’s near hypersonic speed and it’s totally passive in terms of it’s own emissions means the radar operator will… Read more »

Rudeboy
Rudeboy (@guest_815082)
29 days ago
Reply to  Math

HARM did suppress defences. But the early models weren’t great at killing the defences. ALARM was far more successful. But the latest AARGM and AARGM-ER include a MMW seeker so that even if the radar is shut down it will still get targeted.

Math
Math (@guest_815166)
28 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

Your right. Let say that the 90´s surprise is over and the new version has more sensors which makes it better. But still… I don’t like surprises. Redondant approach is better. For example, in Ukraine, we send the AMX 10RC. This véhicule was good in the desert, but even if we explained how to use them to the armies of Ukraine, it reveals itself as useless in this conflict, because drone replaces the need for armed recon. And we don’t have substitution. Harm is well known, ennemies have had plenty of time to study it and adapt to it. I… Read more »

DaveyB.
DaveyB. (@guest_815103)
29 days ago
Reply to  Math

That was HARM in the 90’s. Back then HARM did not have a vital component which is GPS. In simplistic terms, today’s HARM can remember where the radar was located by referencing the transmitted signal to its current position. It then flies to where it believes the signal was coming from. In Gulf War 2, it worked pretty well.

SPEAR-3 will be the UK’s anti-radiation missile. Though it can loiter if it losses the signal. Plus it can use it radar for basic ground mapping to find the target.

Math
Math (@guest_815127)
29 days ago
Reply to  DaveyB.

That’s the point, a backup, just in case. It creates more questions to the opponent. The Mistral/stinger use infrared, the Starstreak use optics and other use radar. It is difficult for the foe to adapt to all situations.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814991)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

Well in part that’s because the Kinzhal is just an updated Soviet one dimensional missile produced mostly as a pr inspired ‘wonder weapon’. New US missiles will be capable of being used on F15s though I agree won’t be exactly compact. However if the US perfects rotary detonation hybrid engines (amongst other innovations) and it looks from tests that they are doing so then size, fuel consumption and range will all be much improved for a given size profile. They seem to be making very good progress with improved rocket motor technology (if their AMRAAM replacement is not exaggerated) and… Read more »

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_815002)
29 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

Tempest?

Joe16
Joe16 (@guest_815027)
29 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

For internal carriage? Maybe. F-35 bays are “limited” partly because it’s a single engine aircraft, so the centre -deepest and longest part-of the fuselage is full of engine. Renders I’ve seen of Tempest show a twin engine design, so possible that a long, deep weapons bay could slot between them.

John Hartley
John Hartley (@guest_814910)
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Lockheed Martin announced the Mako hypersonic missile to be carried by F-35, only a couple of weeks ago.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814927)
1 month ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Yes but it’s LM announcing it so there is a good chance it’s made up and will exist in 20 years if we write a check to LM for $100 billion.

US defence contractors are gaining a similar reputation to the kremlin for inventing magical capabilities that don’t exist but claiming they do. LM were building a fusion reactor that fit on the back of a truck that woukd be ready for world wide distribution in 2015 not see that yet.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814994)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

I sympathise with that view and there is some truth in it but the Mako does seem to have a modicum of feasibility, it doesn’t seem to be re inventing the wheel. Time will tell no doubt, the problem to me is that I reckon they probably can achieve that (the proposed range didn’t seem excessive) but only fitting the F35A version no doubt.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker (@guest_815015)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

I don’t know who’s idea it was to have different size weapon bays for the b model but it’s a bit of an issue. The difference isn’t that much but seems to be an issue.
It Maybe a case of get the weapon into service on A then shrink it a bit for the B model.

DaveyB.
DaveyB. (@guest_815106)
29 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

The B version had to make compromises due to the Lift Fan. In the A and C versions, this area is predominantly a fuel tank. But housed some other parts. Which had to get shifted around for the B version. Hence why the bomb bay is slightly smaller than the other versions.

Anything that long range and large, will have to go under the wings.

Netking
Netking (@guest_815088)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Do you have any examples of US weapons with advertised magical capabilities that don’t exist?

John Hartley
John Hartley (@guest_815140)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Mako is “Ready to fly, ready now and is ready to go in scale and into production quickly” Rick Loy, senior program manager, missiles, Lockheed Martin.

Peter S
Peter S (@guest_814755)
1 month ago

Operational in less than 6 years, starting from scratch? Or is this the revival of the apparently abandoned Perseus concept? Italy have now joined the Anglo French project which still seems to be seeking 2 new missiles – a long range stealthy subsonic replacement for Storm Shadow/ Scalp and a supersonic ASM to replace Exocet and Harpoon( now NSM).
Three new missiles by 2030 seems very ambitious.

Watcherzero
Watcherzero (@guest_814794)
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

Britain was doing hypersonic missile research over 20 years ago. See the UK-Aus HyShot program which evolved into the Aus-US hypersonic program.

Oscar Zulu
Oscar Zulu (@guest_814823)
1 month ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Given that ‘hypersonic capabilities’ are one of the eight capabilities to be developed under the so-called Pillar 2 of the AUKUS agreement, it beggars belief that the UK would choose to go it alone when it could conceivably re-join the Aus-US program, Now known as SciFire (Southern Cross Integrated Flight Research Experiment) the UK could benefit from15 years of an already established research program which is about to see fruition as a weapons program. Why duplicate?? Perhaps understandable if the AUKUS agreement didn’t allow for technology sharing which it clearly does. The new weapon will be a Mach 5-class precision… Read more »

Oscar Zulu
Oscar Zulu (@guest_814826)
1 month ago
Reply to  Oscar Zulu

Woomera

Jon
Jon (@guest_814868)
1 month ago
Reply to  Oscar Zulu

One of the dangers of AUKUS is that we give up UK industrial capability by only buying into US research. Recent reports that we might ditch UK heavy torpedoes because SSN-A will only fire US torpedoes underlines this.

The only way around this trap is to have go-it-alone projects, to let us merge technologies with US and Aus, rather than buying from US manufacturers all the time.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814997)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jon

My gut feeling is that US technology sharing between AUKUS partners was/is only just being agreed upon and vital to any serious cooperation. However is it not possible that this hypersonic programmed is actually enabled by such lessening of US restrictions on such sharing. In other words each partner benefits from share research and development but are free to within certain parameters no doubt, to produce their own national weapons/versions of that joint shared research. This announcement might even be the first fruit of that agreement enabling us to produce such a weapon within a timeframe and cost because of… Read more »

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF (@guest_815003)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Quite possibly, ultimately. Nearer term concentration will be targeted at the production of viable prototype(s). 🤔

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF (@guest_814969)
1 month ago
Reply to  Oscar Zulu

Believe you have described the exact rationale and path forward for the UK. Contract description matches a R&D program. The Brits have managed to precisely time this to fully leverage previous Australian/US research, now under the auspices of AUKUS Pillar II. The Lord truly protects “Mad Dogs and Englishmen”…🤔😉😁

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_814995)
29 days ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Yes and as I comment above waverider was based on UK research and concepts though our designs never left the drawing board… as it was back then.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814798)
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

We can’t get SPEAR developed and deployed in 12 years so the chance of getting these missiles on that time line is zero. This is just an election gimmick.

Deep32
Deep32 (@guest_814811)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Spear 3 or the programme – as in Spear 3/4/5? Only last time I looked, S3 will be ready for integration onto F35B when we get Blk 4 upgrades. S4 is currently happening, and S5 is in development.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814853)
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

SPEAR 3 which is being refered to by MBDA as the Spear missile. I think from inception to deployment on f35B we are looking at well over 12 years at best assuming it’s in by 2027.

Deep32
Deep32 (@guest_814873)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Yes, wasn’t sure which you were referring to.
It has been a little long in it’s development, as it was initially meant to be ready this year I believe. I think that when it was discovered that LM would be late in delivering BlkIV, MBDA took their foot of the pedal a bit. We subsequently now have time to address any issues there might have been, so its ready when BLK IV comes along. Personally believe it could be ready far sooner than 2027/8, but as it’s currently only going on to our F35Bs, there is no need to rush!

Jim
Jim (@guest_814929)
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

There was plans for typhoon deployment but they seem to have been dropped.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy (@guest_815083)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Spear is still to be carried by Typhoon. Germany is very interested in Spear-EW in particular.

Netking
Netking (@guest_814893)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Details on the launch platform for the hypersonic missile remain undecided, with options including deployment from land, fighter jets, or warships”

That line for me is all that one needs to see to understand how much of a gimmick this is. They haven’t decided how it will be launched yet it will be ready by 2030. Clown show.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814930)
1 month ago
Reply to  Netking

Yes, it’s just a gimmick for an election year. Grant Shapps probably dreamt this up last week.

The UK doesn’t make ballistic missiles, if it goes on a ship it could only be the Mk41 on T26 which would take years to integrate or in the air typhoon which would take years and be out if service ten years later and the army had nothing that could launch something like this.

It’s complete nonsense.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814757)
1 month ago

why not buy off the shelf from the US when they finish theirs, be cheaper, faster in to service, building our own will be very. very expensive.

Gareth
Gareth (@guest_814761)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Depending on how one defines cheaper, it may be cheaper to do it all ourselves. Remember the money invested supports jobs and r&d here, and supports our own industry. If we buy from elsewhere then we are propping up foreign industries/tech development rather than our own. Also we cannot be sure that even our closest allies would share their hypervelocity ordnance technology with us.

Last edited 1 month ago by Gareth
Carrickter
Carrickter (@guest_814770)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Might not be for resale – potentially very sensitive tech. There are some limits on missile technology sharing too, although I don’t know whether this would fall under that.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814776)
1 month ago
Reply to  Carrickter

true, look at the F22, U2/SR71, B1/B2/B52 never sold to any one.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814856)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Yes and all arguably expensive gimmicks that failed in their mission with the exclusion of B52

Martin
Martin (@guest_814857)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

WHAT?, the F22, U2/SR71 failed? the others i agree with.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814932)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

F22 failed as they built 186 of them at massive cost then the program got scrubbed. SR71 was very very expensive and a handful were built. U2 the original version was a death trap who’s job was largely replaced with satellites soon after deployment. Dragon lady was much more successful however. These aircraft were all technically innovative but the programs were very expensive and largely failed to live up to what the started out to achieve. The F22 was suppose to replace the F15, it didn’t. The SR71 had numerous versions that never got into service and much if not… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815026)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

I’m confused the Dragon Lady is effectively a U2 so how can you say that was effective yet the U2 on which it was intrinsically based was not. Equally even today despite all the hype over Satellites it is well accepted that non orbital platforms are vital for gathering intelligence, not only because technically they over most of their lives at least have in many circumstances been able to provide better imagery and intelligence but unless you have thousands of complex spy satellites you can’t necessarily cover the areas that you need too assuming weather and counter measures aren’t a… Read more »

Meirion x
Meirion x (@guest_815708)
25 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

👍Exactly!

Netking
Netking (@guest_815081)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Seriously Jim, there is so much rubbish in this post It’s hard to know where to begin. Are you aware that the SR-71 was in service for more than 30 years? Are you aware that the U2 is still in service today? Do you understand why there is a need for ISTAR drones like the rq-180 and why the US keep pumping billions of dollars into other black ISTAR projects? Any advanced adversary can track satellites, even hobbyist are able to track some of the most advanced ones. I’m not even going to get into the fact of satellite coverage… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_814896)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Yes and all arguably expensive gimmicks that failed in their mission with the exclusion of B52″

I think you lose all credibility with comments like this.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814954)
1 month ago
Reply to  Netking

I don’t believe so, I’m looking at economics rather than technical “break throughs” Deeper analysis is required to decide if a program is successful as opposed to, wow that goes Mach 3 and cost a gizillion dollars so clearly Kelly Johnson is a genius. If the SR71 was successful it woukd still be flying today but it’s not. The F22 will be dead and buried and the F15 will be in the air decades later. The U2 almost started two world wars getting shit down doing a job that satellites could largely do. It was based on a failed premise… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_814963)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

I’m not sure if you are being serious in your post because using the standards that you use for the sr71, why isn’t the spitfire still flying today?

If we’re using economics then the typhoon, the t-45, the astutes, the challenger tanks have all been abysmal failures. Honestly by that standard I can’t think of even one major UK weapons project that would be classified as a success.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker (@guest_815020)
29 days ago
Reply to  Netking

Really the projects Jim listed are successful is some aspects and failures in others. I don’t think those U.K. projects are failures. Astute set out to replace the SSN with 7 new boats. It’s accomplishing that goal. Whether more should have been built isn’t what makes a successful project. Challenger 3 is the same. Make 150 tanks to replace challenger 2. Now if it doesn’t work or gets stopped at 40 tanks it failed. F22 goal was to replace F15. It failed as it was too costly and over specified. Now had the Cold War not ended then I think… Read more »

Netking
Netking (@guest_815032)
29 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Whether more should have been built isn’t what makes a successful project.”

This is exactly the point I was making. Just to be clear I don’t think any of those platforms are failures. I was pointing out the he was applying a standard that if applied evenly to almost any defence project from any country would make all of them failures. Now if he had mentioned the LCS or the Zumwalt, then he would have a point.

DJ
DJ (@guest_815043)
29 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Actually, of all the NATO mbt’s in Ukraine, Challenger 2 is the standout according to Ukraine troops on the ground. Why – sights & gun accuracy. Something to think about. Just because everyone says so doesn’t mean it is so.

Meirion x
Meirion x (@guest_815711)
25 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Yes, the Cold War plan was to produce 350 F-22’s.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815031)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

You see I agree and disagree with your various points in equal measure. I could go on for hours about Kelly Johnson a man who was described as ‘seeing air’ because of his apparent instinctive insight into aerodynamic errors with the Model 10 yet seemed to have no such intrinsic insight into those of the P-38 which killed pilots and led to some deeply flawed attempts to remedy the compressibility issues one of which (the raised tail) killed the test pilot. But that is the point in a way, there is no single view, no one basis to judge success… Read more »

Meirion x
Meirion x (@guest_815709)
25 days ago
Reply to  Netking

Jim seems to be like x(formerly Steve Taylor) from NL and here? Was that name banned from this site several years ago?
UKDJ needs to investigate him.
There is something deceptive about him.

Last edited 25 days ago by Meirion x
Jim
Jim (@guest_814799)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Because there one needs a B52 attached to it to make it work

Martin
Martin (@guest_814820)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

At the moment yes, the trial version does need a rather large B52 to work.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_814838)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Which is why we might develop something different?

Martin
Martin (@guest_814842)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

oh i agree, just we do have a habit of f ing things up, some times at great cost,

Jim
Jim (@guest_814858)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

I agree, I don’t think we want to be part of this gimmick. I don’t want to be dropping a £1 billion on an R&D program or buying any US missiles at $100 million a go.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814862)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

So, what is the answer? what makes sense but does not cost us BILLIONS, buy chinse or Russian, theirs works, The US one does not YET?#
Could always trade North Korea some buggers for their leader for one there wonky ones.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814937)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

It’s an answer to a question we don’t need to answer. Hypersonics are a gimmick.

We should stick with sub sonic cheap long range low observable cruise missiles like FC/ASW.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814938)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Why are they a gimmick, ? harder to hit, less time to react.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814956)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

I’m referring to conventional hypersonic weapons not nuclear ones

they are a gimmick because they cost $100 million each and do a job that can largely be done by $1 million cruise missiles.

They will be so expensive there is almost no target worth hitting with them.

They are dumb weapons with little if any situational awareness or ability to communicate with operators or other weapons and they sacrifice range for speed.

Traveling at hypersonic speed also generates massive amounts of thermal energy which instantly telegraphs a position to any enemy with an IR satellite capability as well.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814962)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

so why does the UK want them, we will never put a nuke on one. Seem a lot of money for a weapon so expensive we would have very few to use. Too expensive to fire at most targets.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815045)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

That’s the traditional view of such weapons and why they were never really developed beyond ballistic missiles which hit hypersonic speeds by necessity. However technology has changed and new generation hybrid hypersonic powertrains can offer great range, especially when flying high where the atmosphere is thin. Hypersonic aircraft with long range are about to be flown as text beds let alone missiles after all. Size and more-so cost are still issues but I am not sure insurmountable ones and present research is there to determine these factors and their ultimate usefulness in a conflict as conflict risk surely determines you… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815041)
29 days ago
Reply to  Martin

To anyone who has studied them objectively they aren’t, even if their exact advantages and merits are still up for some debate. To dismiss them is equivalent to dismissing the jet engine in 1940 when the argument for relative power (let alone familiarity) still favoured the new generation piston engines then in development.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815040)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Seriously if you have seriously studied the research and development of hypersonics Jim you will see strong evidence that hypersonics are anything but a gimmick for reasons I have mentioned in other posts so won’t do so here. The US postponed its hypersonic development a decade ago simply because it did not see the cost/capability balance it provided was required back then, the same reason it stalled further investment on the award winning best in class Northrop Grumman autonomous drone platform. However that work has been resumed on both for very good reason and rightly so in my mind as… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_814836)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

US missiles are not cheap.

Support and mods are crazy expensive and you face zero choice as they own the IP & software and we don’t.

Martin
Martin (@guest_814840)
1 month ago

true its the spares support where companies make the money

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815046)
29 days ago
Reply to  Martin

… as the French understand well, we historically less so.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_814957)
1 month ago

SB I am beginning to just wonder where do we see ourselves going. We have left the EU, but are still excellent European Defence Partners and are still committed to NATO. As it stands Russia is blowing hot from the East and an Orange Mist may be heading from the West. France and U.K are the only other Western Nuclear powers and France has a very long track record of doing its own thing and not breaking the bank doing it. I’d actually sit down with the and talk about the what if scenario of US pulling back from NATO… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_815011)
29 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Is it daft?

There will be a god reason for going alone at this stage and stating that level of speed to ISD.

We must have something close to ready that is a lot cheaper than the US alternative that doesn’t need a B52! None of which is impossible?

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_815034)
29 days ago

US is in a totally different position to us, they are 000’s of miles away from any potential enemy and have large Strategic Platforms available. So they can carry heavier and bigger weapons than us and fire at long range, we don’t have those so we need something much smaller. Europe’s present potential platforms are Typhoon & Rafale and will for the next 15/20 years.The F35B would mean spending money getting it integrated by LM and that will be expensive, but would you need stealth for stand off weapons like these ? As for me saying it’s daft, the definition… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_815038)
29 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

The issue is AUKUS pillar whatever that has hypersonic in it.

There was tech sharing.

US don’t trust the French with intel as they will do what suits them with it including leaking it. The French are not team players are highly self interested in Presidential Electoral Prestige dressed up as ‘for the dignity of France’.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_815100)
29 days ago

SB if Mr Orange gets in, which would you trust the least ? As for intel the French aren’t in 5 eyes. And all I’m saying is speaking to the French about industrial cooperation isn’t such a bad idea.
As for AUKUS if Trump gets in I would worry about him just ditching it !
Though if he did it could be quite an opportunity.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_815108)
29 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

If TTTB (The Tangerine Tinted Buffon) gets in it may well become JAUKAS……I don’t see FRUKAS as a thing? [sorry having too much fun with acronyms in a very dull meeting] The point I’m making is that some of the tech that UK has, may well have been a synthesis of that shared with and some from US and AUS so we might not be able to share with France even if we wanted to. We got a long way with hypersonics before developing into deployable weapon(s) was shut down. So I’d guess that we have all the pieces in… Read more »

DJ
DJ (@guest_815064)
29 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Slight correction – US is geographically closer to Russia, than most of Europe. Bering Strait is only 82km wide at the narrowest part. It’s also much much closer (geographically) to North Korea & China than any country in Europe. US is now switching to the Pacific as its main concern. If you were them, you would be too.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_815096)
29 days ago
Reply to  DJ

Either way what they would use are Strategic Bombers and long range missiles, don’t forget both potential adversaries aren’t exactly small.
We on the other hand can get away with smaller and with less range.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815048)
29 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

That’s why I think there may be a bigger story here, after all when the US shut us out if what was our own initiated programme on creating the bomb come post war our own efforts led to renewal of deep nuclear ties some years later. This may well be a similar attempt at hitting similar nerves whoever the target may be if France and/or the US are still being obstructive. If the US does drift away from Europe the European hands on tactical nuclear weapons are for me going to be a necessity otherwise we will be an open… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_815098)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

IMHO it is high time we had Lancaster House 2.
Both commit to a 5th SSBN and adopt an integrated rotation / maintenance cycle to ensure 3/4 on patrol at any one time.
Which is perfectly doable given the 30 Year lifetime, France using HEU for their SSBN and both wanted 5 in the 1st place.
Also UK acquires an airlaunched Tactical capability to match the “Force de Disuasssion”. Storm Shadow or even ASMP in the short term but a joint missile in the long term.

Tommo
Tommo (@guest_814864)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Look at the Ajax programme if you want too compare waste and time I doubt if we go our own way will the date of 2030 be the completion date or the start date of rectifications for the initial model which hasn’t panned out the way it was intended too do but ??? If you give us X amount of extra funding and time we may have a working prototype by ???

Rudeboy
Rudeboy (@guest_815084)
29 days ago
Reply to  Tommo

The Ajax programme?

The one built by a US Defence Contractor? General Dynamics…

If we’d gone with the BAE proposal it would have been in service years ago….and so would Warrior with a new turret and CT40 gun…

Tommo
Tommo (@guest_815147)
29 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

Their PR dept charmed the MOD and the suckers fell Hook line and sinker for it then they laughed all the way to the Bank

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814762)
1 month ago

Is this what Radakin meant by “Missile Battalions for the army”??
Depending on the range of these things, visions of GLCM convoys back, this time our own, dispersing around the UK.
Try targeting that, Russia.

John
John (@guest_814793)
1 month ago

I think it is guff. It is far too aggressive, like those pointy, sharp navy swords. And “hypersonic” reeks of Jeremy Clarkson Syndrome, very toxic masculinity type of MoD policy that will be challenged in European Courts 😕

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814807)
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Hang on, Labour are not in yet!

John
John (@guest_814812)
1 month ago

😅

Tommo
Tommo (@guest_814866)
1 month ago

And who said we’d be here in 2030 I was reading the Tea leafs and the future looks empty but then again it’s hard too read a Tea bag

Martin
Martin (@guest_814822)
1 month ago

Just look for large groups of them/they/that with the arm pit hair, and hippy clothes, that is how Russia would know where are missiles were by the CND camps.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814830)
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Haha! I don’t think ( though I was too young to know for sure ) whether the CND lot actually followed GLCM once they left GC or MLW.
So they might know where they’re Barracked but one dispersal, I doubt.

Posse Comitatus
Posse Comitatus (@guest_814763)
1 month ago

Time frame seems hopelessly optimistic. The could easily end up in another financial fiasco, over budget, years behind schedule and ending up with about 5 finished products.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_814841)
1 month ago

Unless most of the tech already exists from Reaction Engines and previous UK projects.

I wouldn’t underestimate how much has been quietly whirring away in UK R&D over the five years or so.

In many ways this us very good as a lot of things are properly scoped out and even designed and now need to prototype.

Frank62
Frank62 (@guest_814766)
1 month ago

Thought it must be a late April-fool lark at first. Hard to imagine anything going Hypersonic being able to manouvre at all. Hopefully there’ll be some crossover with American research & hopefully we don’t leak too much to the Chinese!

Concerned we need to spend on more mundane stuff to make the UK a more formidable conventional deterrent before chasing the exotic. Could this just be a bit of electioneering spin to dazzle the public to cover up the dereliction of duty running the forces down so far?

Mr Bell
Mr Bell (@guest_814768)
1 month ago

Important programme but can HMG please not spend billions and billions of tax payers money on this to then find the unit price is £100 million each and we can only afford to purchase 20 missiles only. If we are going to do this the end product has to be ordered in the hundreds of thousands.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814861)
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Not sure I what it live in a world where anyone has hundreds of thousands of hypersonic cruise and ballistic missiles.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell (@guest_814918)
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Was a typing error, I meant hundreds or thousands, not hundreds of thousands, but the principle is the same, development cost has to equal a tangible viable capability with resilience and enough munitions to meet foreseen worse case scenario need (eg war vs Russia, China, Iran)

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815053)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

Jim I thought you claim hypersonics are pointless and a waste of money, in which case surely you would feel safer in such a World where they are preferred to slow stealthy missiles where there would be 1000% more effective missiles.

Tomartyr
Tomartyr (@guest_814771)
1 month ago

A hypersonic cruise missile? Quite ambitious, I think most hypersonics being developed are hypersonic glide vehicles.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815054)
29 days ago
Reply to  Tomartyr

No that’s not true from what I see the glide vehicles are really the top predators and more skewed towards nuclear warheads, the bulk of new developments are between those and standard cruise missiles but quite wide capabilities and range being proposed and predominantly but not exclusively on nuclear. The glide vehicles tend to be the toughest to crack the lower end like Kinzhal relatively easy but really just faster air launched missiles that slow down as they close on a target so not really much if any more advantageous.

Andrew D
Andrew D (@guest_814781)
1 month ago

If we go ahead with this it will be good for our defence industry ,has we need to do projects on our own at times.Going with other nations could course delays like we’ve seen in past .So let’s get on with it 🇬🇧

Marked
Marked (@guest_814782)
1 month ago

Design and deploy by 2030? Was this meant to be published on April 1st?

FieldLander
FieldLander (@guest_814803)
1 month ago

I will eat my hat if this happens. Who is doing the fundamental enabling research? Unless very advanced no chance in 6 years. Slow news day?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814810)
1 month ago
Reply to  FieldLander

If one wonders just what has been developed by DSTL, DARPA in the black. Answer, plenty.
So maybe things are further along than first seems.

FieldLander
FieldLander (@guest_814821)
1 month ago

Hat is ready top be eaten 😉

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814827)
1 month ago
Reply to  FieldLander

I’ll join you, as it would be fantastic.

FieldLander
FieldLander (@guest_814911)
1 month ago

Pretty sure my hat is safe.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63 (@guest_814824)
1 month ago

With speeds of Mach 5+ this is faster than the Aster 30 and Meteor. Would it also be a possible replacement for these?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_814828)
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

Doubt it.

Jim
Jim (@guest_814863)
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

No definitely not, no one is looking at air to air or surface to air hypersonic weapons. They are all surface attack only.

It’s basically impossible to get anything like a radar to work at the front of a hypersonic weapon due to plasma effects. The weapons that do have this likely have to slow down to attack a target which is exactly what you don’t want form and A2A or SAM missile.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815061)
29 days ago
Reply to  Jim

That’s very true though that question did make me speculate if a missile that’s extremely fast early on but slowing as it gets nearer to a target to improve tracking and manouversbility at say present Meteor level just might be very useful if the overall range starts to get to 300+ miles. As Air to air missiles of Meteor quality are getting closer to that mark and much improved over previous generations I do wonder if at some stage ram/scramjet missiles with throttle-ability might try such a trick to perfect their potential and lethality at those ranges.

DaveyB.
DaveyB. (@guest_815093)
29 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Yes, this was the premise behind Meteor’s design. Where the ramjet can be throttled. The throttling is determined by how far and fast the target is moving. If the target is over x distance and at y speed. The missile will throttle back, so has a longer portion of the cruise phase under power. If it has any fuel left over it can throttle up again. However, if the target is close. The missile can chose to maintain full power and close with the target in the shortest time. There is train of thought, that it may be better to… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815060)
29 days ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

I think more likely land attack or that sort of thing, the Meteor is an excellent compromise very fast but efficient stays powered far longer than most competitors so remains more manoeuvrable in terminal stage. It can get to the point where that ability to target a manoeuvrable target like a SU35 will become negative rather than positive as speed increases. Where that balance is mind is the point mind. Throtalable power trains of the sort Meteor potentially offers does give room for further perfecting however so that perfect combination at range can be obtained.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney (@guest_814959)
1 month ago

I’d actually speak to France about their ASN4G programme, they may be awkward sods but they do make things that work and don’t cost a fortune.
After all the most successful, battle proven, non US Air to Surface missile is Storm Shadow / SCALPE. And MBDA is jointly owned and very successful.

Last edited 1 month ago by ABCRodney
Paul.P
Paul.P (@guest_815182)
28 days ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

I think Sunak made the announcement from Broughton. I feel a deal coming on ….UK chooses H175 for NMH and MBDA shares ASB4G studies with UK: branded as UK sovereign hypersonic for electoral purposes. Son of Storm Shadow.

Last edited 28 days ago by Paul.P
will owas
will owas (@guest_814846)
1 month ago

Gods speed

lordtemplar
lordtemplar (@guest_814860)
1 month ago

by 2030, and launch platform still TBD? this is not a very credible press release

David Owen
David Owen (@guest_814865)
1 month ago

Let’s see in 2030 or another costly overrun, 😆 🤣 😂

Mike
Mike (@guest_814882)
1 month ago

Great but it will not happen because there is no money and we we will have to get past the civil service scrutiny

Meirion x
Meirion x (@guest_815720)
25 days ago
Reply to  Mike

Contract for development put out to tender, so it is happening! So money has been found.

Patrick C
Patrick C (@guest_814898)
1 month ago

after seeing russia’s air defense performance i wonder what the point is? turns out the s-400 is a complete joke. tomahawk, storm shadow, jassm and ATACMs are more than enough lol.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell (@guest_814920)
1 month ago
Reply to  Patrick C

Its certainly encouraging that Russia’s most prized and highly vaulted SAM systems are easily penetrated by distinctly old western attack missiles. TBH I suspected that was the case when Israeli F15/16’s were running rings around them in Syria, so much so that the Russian’s turned their radar systems off for fear of an ALARM type missile closing in on them.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815066)
29 days ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Or was it because of an agreement between them as some have said that as some have also said is why Israel was so reluctant to help out Ukraine. Who knows the true story but the S-400 and later those are not useless the Ukranians are taking great care with planning their attacks to catch them out and we don’t know the exact success rate as yet. Russian incompetence is certainly a factor too and it’s always difficult not to mistake enemy for friendly targets when under pressure and Ukraine often exploits Russian air activity to make attacks so even… Read more »

DJ
DJ (@guest_815072)
29 days ago
Reply to  Patrick C

So they now have a new S-500 system. Nothing energises military development like a war.

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_814933)
1 month ago

Personally I think the money would have been better spent on a wider autonomous vehicle programme including building kit to counter such kit.

You need to build a whole industry – which will need support. New suppliers. Low cost kit needs to be explored etc. With this you are putting all your eggs in one basket?

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky (@guest_815068)
29 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

I suspect autonomy and hypersonics will play an increasingly complimentary role. Also wonder what role quantum gyroscpes and related technology might play in targeting and manoeuvring with ultra fast missiles and the pressure on sensors effectiveness they inevitably have.

Mark B
Mark B (@guest_815159)
28 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

You are clearly perfectly correct. New tech is bubbling out of every crevice and the UK needs to be ahead of the game. Early days for Quantum I suspect but the potential is mind blowing.

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts (@guest_814965)
1 month ago

Designing it is one thing, but where is the industrial capacity to produce such a weapon in useful quantities?

Ian
Ian (@guest_814966)
1 month ago

Hypersonic flight in atmosphere generates a plasma layer around the vehicle that impedes telemetry, making guidance difficult and limiting the scenarios for which the missile is useful.

DJ
DJ (@guest_815074)
29 days ago
Reply to  Ian

Only if you try to go all the way at Mach 5+. If you are doing Mach 4 when you hit, technically you are supersonic. Result is much the same.

Netking
Netking (@guest_815099)
29 days ago
Reply to  Ian

This is not necessarily true and probably only occurs at very high mach numbers. There are well publicized interviews with US military officials on the very topic and they stated that it has no impact on their ability to communicate with the weapon.

Andrew
Andrew (@guest_814976)
29 days ago

If the MoD can afford to put a big enough order in that will allow costs per unit to come down and open up export opportunities then this is probably the right route to go down. But if in the end we order a handful of missiles that cost a fortune then I would instead buy off the shelf (if the US is selling).

Gunbuster
Gunbuster (@guest_815006)
29 days ago

Put a bigger motor on a Starstreak…Sorted!

Paul.P
Paul.P (@guest_815023)
29 days ago

Is this a Reaction Engines thing?

rattman
rattman (@guest_815161)
28 days ago

Not sure why you wouldn’t leverage AUKUS to join the HACM program. Why build something to be one of the also runs when you could just pay some $$$$ and be part of the programs with the front runners