Hong Kong Zhongtong Press recently quoted insider from China’s aviation industry that China carried out two advanced weapon test at both southern and northern launching site on November 23rd, one is heavy rocket transition and another is the most advanced Hypersonic Weapon – WU-14/ DF-ZF.
China authority didn’t require removal of related information this time, indicating that China might intend to leak the news and is confident in its technology of advanced hypersonic weapon (AHW) or hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV).
The tested weapon is called DF-ZF and named as WU-14 by the Pentagon. It is speculated that WU-14 is launched from a platform similar to that of intermediate-range ballistic missiles like DF-21, and reaches near-earth orbit of 100 kilometers high and then returns to atmosphere for unpowered gliding, and its flying speed could be as high as Mach 10.
The U.S. also made a series of tests for advanced hypersonic weapons and said China’s WU-14 is just a copy of its program of “Strike Anywhere on Earth within an Hour” or Prompt Global Strike (PGS) Program.
Lockheed Martin tested its first HTV-2 hypersonic weapon in 2010 but failed, and its test failed again in 2011, and was abandoned for too much technical difficulty. But Boeing’s X-51A made achievements in 2013 and conducted four tests, but was later suspended for lack of budget. However, U.S. Air Force’s similar program has been approved.
America’s a series of failures in testing hypersonic weapons indicate that its research progress of such weapons might have lagged behind China.