China’s Second Hypersonic Glider Test Fails

An artistic rendering of a hypersonic aircraft / AP


The People’s Liberation Army unsuccessfully tested a hypersonic vehicle, the South China Morning Post reported.

It was the second test of a hypersonic vehicle. The first test was successful.

The test was carried out on August 7 at a missile and satellite launching centre in Shanxi province, about 300 kilometres from its capital Taiyuan, said the sources, who asked not be named.

The vehicle broke up soon after it was launched. It was the second time the PLA has tested the system, the two sources said.

The first test took place on January 9, and it was confirmed by the National Defence Ministry as  successful a few days later.

The latest model is designed to be carried by a ballistic missile to an undisclosed suborbital altitude, then released. The vehicle then dives towards its target at speeds of up to Mach 10, more than 12,000km/h.