02:58 GMT25 November 2020
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    WASHINGTON, (Sputnik) - The US Navy will deploy hypersonic missiles on its Virginia class nuclear-powered attack submarines fleets, its three Zumwalt-class ships and its more than 60 Arleigh Burke-class DDG51 destroyers, National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien said in prepared remarks on Wednesday.

    "The Navy’s Conventional Prompt Strike program will provide hypersonic missile capability to hold targets at risk from longer ranges. This capability will be deployed first on our newer Virginia class submarines and the Zumwalt class destroyers. Eventually, all three flights of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers will field this capability," O’Brien said in Portsmouth, Maine, Defense News reported.

    However, the current boost-glide design for the US Navy's first hypersonic missiles will make them too large to fit on the Aegis system missile launchers currently used on all the Arleigh Burke-class ships, the report said.

    The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Pinckney (DDG 91) transits the Pacific Ocean during a Division Tactics exercise with U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Northland April 26, 2020.

    The job of converting the fleet to carry the new missiles will absorb the entire naval shipbuilding capabilities of the United States for years to come, the report added.

    Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday said last week that he was looking to increase the firepower and lethality of the current fleet of surface ships and the Arleigh Burkes rather than the Zumwalts would be the model for the next generation of surface combat vessels.

    Tags:
    National Security, Robert O'Brien, DDG51 Arleigh-Burke-class destroyer, warships, US Navy
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