Last month, an unknown rocket was discovered in a forest in Poland near the city of Bydgoszcz. Experts from the Polish Air Force Institute of Technology determined that it was a Russian X-55 missile (according to NATO codification – AS-15 Kent).
What is known
The rocket was found in the forest by one of the passers-by. The Polish army does not use the Kh-55. In this regard, the version that the missile could have fallen in the forest during exercises, for example, to test an air defense system, is no longer valid.
Experts from the Technological Institute believe that the rocket crossed the eastern border of Poland. If this version is confirmed, it will mean that the Kh-55 was launched by a Russian carrier aircraft.
The incident happened at the end of last year. The Polish military tracked the missile, but lost sight of it near the city of Bydgoszcz. The settlement is located at a distance of more than 400 km from the border with Ukraine.
The military did not notify the procurator that a missile had crossed Polish airspace. The search ended in December last year due to bad weather. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said he only learned of the incident at the end of April.
The Kh-55 is a Russian strategic air-to-ground cruise missile that can hit targets at a distance of 2,500 km. It develops a speed of 720-830 km / h (Mach 0.59-0.68). The launch weight of the rocket is 1195 kg, and the mass of the warhead is 410 kg.
The X-55 is available in several versions, including the X-555. It has an improved control system and is equipped with a cluster warhead. The maximum launch range is 2000 km, and the use of conformal fuel tanks increases the range to 2500 km.