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DF-17 may not sole hypersonic missile program: media

[2019.12.02, Mon 05:03] The DF-17, China's hypersonic missile that was first revealed at the National Day military parade on October 1, might not be the only hypersonic aircraft program China possesses, a report by the state broadcaster suggested. "From the test subjects that were made available to the public, the Xingkong-2 might use a different flight pattern to the DF-17," said military expert Ma Jun on Military Time, a China Central Television program on military affairs, on Saturday, without further elaboration. The Xingkong-2 Ma referred to is the first Chinese waverider hypersonic vehicle unveiled by the country, dating a year earlier than the DF-17. When the DF-17 missile made its debut at the National Day parade this year, some thought it might be the final product of the Xingkong-2 project. The CCTV program introduced two genres of hypersonic aircraft: one is a glide-boost, meaning the aircraft is propelled into the sky via a rocket and glides in the air using shock waves generated by its own hypersonic flight, while the other is air-breathing, meaning the aircraft uses a scramjet engine to provide thrust. The DF-17 is said to be a glide-boost vehicle, but it is not known what type the Xingkong-2 might be, other than it could be different from the DF-17, although it was also propelled by a rocket, according to Ma. The US and Russia are striving to develop hypersonic weapons with both glide-boost and air-breathing technologies, as the two have different strengths and shortcomings, a military expert who asked not to be named told the Global Times. China will not fall behind and could develop multiple types of hypersonic weapons using different technologies in the future, the expert predicted.
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