Additional information on the new Russian Onyx-M anti-ship supersonic cruise missile was revealed, state news agency TASS reported, citing anonymous sources.
The Onyx-M has the capability of engaging targets with a high-low trajectory of 800 km. The missile was originally designed to be deployed for ship targets and has the capability to be used against ground targets. The 800 km range is a big upgrade, as earlier it only had a strike range of 300 km.
The conventional Onyx has a maximum range of 300 km, a maximum flight speed of up to 2.5 speeds of sound at high altitude. The mass of the warhead of the ammunition reaches 250 kg. The missile can be equipped on both surface warships and submarines.
The development of the P-800 anti-ship complex with the Onyx missile began in 1982, the missile was put into service 20 years later – in 2002.
The source said that “the missile is equipped with an advanced control system and will be able to hit both sea and ground targets with greater accuracy.” The missile’s protection against the effects of electronic warfare is also increased, the anonymous source said.
Another defense industry source told TASS that flight design tests of the latest version of Onyx were to begin in the first ten days of September in the Barents Sea on the Northern Fleet’s landfill. To ensure the safety of navigation and civil aviation flights, several areas of the sea were closed under these tests, “however, launches were not completed due to the need for additional checks of prototypes of the product.”
“It is expected that flight tests of Onyx-M will begin in the next one to two months,” the source said.
Similarly to the original Onyx cruise missile, the Onyx-M will be capable of carrying conventional and nuclear warheads. The maximum speed of the Onyx-M and mass-dimensional characteristics remained the same as in the basic version of the rocket.
The information provided by TASS’ sources was not confirmed by the missile manufacturer – NPO Mashinostroyeniya (part of the Tactical Missile Arms Corporation, KTRV).
Earlier, on September 13th, a spokesperson for the company told TASS that there were plans to improve the Onyx anti-ship missile.
“Yes, we proposed to improve the flight performance of Onyx missiles to increase the effectiveness of this anti-ship complex,” the spokesperson said.
Russian-Indian BraMos rocket was produced on the basis of the Onyx cruise missile. At MAKS-2019, the head of the BraMos joint venture on the Indian side, Kumar Mishra, told TASS that the firing range of the BraMos cruise missile could be increased to 800 km. He then noted that such a technical opportunity existed. The missile was recently tested successfully.
On September 26th, 2018, it was reported that the Russian Navy test-fired a supersonic Onyx anti-ship cruise missile for the first time.
On September 30th, 2019, the Onyx was fired by the Bastion Coastal Defense System in Chukotka.
The Onyx-M, with a range of 800 km would previously be banned under the INF Treaty, which the US decided to terminate on August 2nd.
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