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the tests of this tank killer continue – RT in French

Soon, a new asset in the Russian arsenal? Designed to destroy armored vehicles, the Hermès supersonic missile is undergoing its final tests before being put into service. Powerful and autonomous, this vector would also be insensitive to jamming.

It should not intervene immediately against the Ukrainian counter-offensive, but perhaps the Hermes missile will one day be the nightmare of the tanks supplied to kyiv by the West. While some Western media seem to be worried in June about its imminent entry into service, the firm KBP, of the Rostec holding company, declared at the end of May to RIA Novosti that it was continuing the commissioning tests of this general-purpose supersonic missile, capable of deal with moving and stationary ground targets and even low-speed flying aircraft.

Capable of flying at 1,300 meters per second and carrying its military load of 28 kg over a maximum of 100 km (15 km for its version on board an aircraft), the Hermès missile is of the “fire and forget” type. . Once launched with target parameters, it is able to steer itself towards its target using its inertial guidance system, Glonass satellite positioning and radar signals. Some reports indicate that it could also rely on infrared detection and a semi-active laser system for terminal guidance. Its manufacturer finally mentions that the weapon system includes reconnaissance drones to refine its trajectory and illuminate the targets.

All of these characteristics would make the Hermès vector insensitive to electronic countermeasures and above all allow the launcher to slip away after firing, making it less vulnerable to counter-battery fire.

During a presentation at the International Military-Technical Forum Army-2020 organized by the Russian Ministry of Defense, a representative of the Shipunov design bureau (a subsidiary of Rostec), designer of this weapon system, spoke to from the TASS agency.

98-99% probability of destruction

According to his estimate after a “full cycle of tests”, “a single missile from the system will be enough to reliably eliminate any existing Western tank”, the probability of destruction being 98-99%. Besides the precision of the vector, the fact that it chooses its angle of attack according to the target (from above for a tank, where it is most vulnerable) contributes to these good results.

“The tests of the Hermès complex are in progress” and “the decision to deliver [aux troupes russes] will be taken depending on the results of the tests,” KBP, the manufacturer of the supersonic missile, recently announced. The press service of the Russian company specified that KBP was working on the modernization of the weapon system “taking into account the evolution of the situation and the environment”.

It is in fact only the last episode of the design of this missile, which dates back to the 1990s. After a first phase, which saw the development of three versions, one designed to be fired from the ground, the second an aircraft (the only one to have actually been tested in 2003), the third of a ship, the Hermès project has been shelved. The Russian intervention in support of the Syrian government then revealed the need for precision missiles and Hermès came out of the boxes in 2016.

If the final tests prove conclusive, Hermès could be rapidly mass-produced, with most of its components already mass-produced. Thus, the missile of this weapon system seems to be derived from that used in the Pantsir-S anti-aircraft system, in service with the Russian army since 2012.

RT All Fr Trans

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