On July 7, Japan’s Vice Defense Minister Tomohiro Yamamoto visited the research center for aviation and rocket technology of the Self-Defense Forces, located in a suburb of Tokyo. The official got acquainted with the progress in implementing promising defense programs, in particular with R&D for a new generation fighter of national development and weapons systems for it.
Japan’s Vice Defense Minister also posted a picture to its Twitter account that included what looked like a hypersonic guided missile able to attack both ships or ground targets.
According to a local source, this is a new hypersonic anti-ship missile under development by Acquisition, Technology & Logistics Agency (ATLA).
As Naval News previously reported, the new missile aims to be powered by a Dual-Mode Scramjet engine (DMSJ), a combination of ramjet and scramjet (supersonic combustion ramjet) engines, to fly at a wide range of speeds, including hypersonic speeds of Mach 5 or higher.
The new missile designed to cruise at high altitudes and could pose a threat to Chinese aircraft carriers in the East China Sea.
Previously it was reported the Japanese Ministry of Defense planned to deploy an early version of the missile in 2026, followed by an enhanced version after 2028. With such a missile in service, Japan would be the fourth country in the world armed with hypersonic gliding technology, after China, Russia and the United States.