Hyper-glide Delivery Systems and the Implications for Strategic Stability and Arms Reductions
Center for Nonproliferation Studies
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The United States, Russia, and China are all developing advanced conventional weapons often referred to as “hyper-glide” or “boost-glide” systems. Hypersonic glide vehicles (HGV) are those that travel at more than five times the speed of sound. “Glide” in this context refers to the behavior of the system as it reenters the earth’s atmosphere. Reentry is an extremely demanding environment, but the possibility of systems that can accurately deliver conventional payloads promptly over great distances or evade missile defenses presents obvious military advantages.