IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


3rd January, 2024 Security


Disclaimer: Copyright infringement not intended.


  • Following the massive Russian missile and drone strike on Ukraine in December 2023, a spokesperson for the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine stated that Russia had launched 300 Kh-22 missiles at Ukraine.


  • The Kh-22 "Storm" missile, initially developed by MKB Raduga in the Soviet Union, is a prominent long-range anti-ship missile designed to target aircraft carriers and carrier battle groups.
  • Evolving from the Kh-22, its modernized version, the Kh-32, was introduced in 2016, featuring enhanced propulsion and targeting systems.

Development and Design

  • Origins: The missile was conceived after analyzing naval battles post-World War II, leading Soviet strategists to prioritize stand-off attacks to neutralize enemy fleets.
  • Propulsion and Speed: Fueled by a Tumansky liquid-fuel rocket engine with TG-02 and IRFNA, the Kh-22 reaches a maximum speed of Mach 4.6, with a range of up to 600 km.
  • Versatile Launch Modes: It offers high-altitude and low-altitude launch modes.

Operational History

  • Entry into Service: The first combat-ready Kh-22 missiles entered service in 1962 and were deployed on various strategic bombers like the Tu-22M3 ('Backfire') bomber.
  • Recent Use: Notably, during the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, these missiles were reportedly employed in various strikes, causing concern due to their significant destructive potential and collateral damage.


  • Kh-22N: Equipped with a nuclear warhead.
  • Kh-22P: An anti-radiation variant designed for radar installation destruction.
  • Kh-22M/MA: Upgraded versions with enhanced specifications, such as improved speed, range, and attack profiles.
  • Kh-32: An updated conventional variant introduced in 2016 with improved propulsion and targeting systems.

Comparison with Kh-47M2 Kinzhal

  • Both Kh-32 and Kinzhal are designed to elude adversary air defense by flying beyond engagement envelopes.
  • Kinzhal's hypersonic speed and maneuverability allow it to use a flatter approach trajectory for increased range.


The Kh-22 "Storm" and its derivatives remain powerful long-range anti-ship missiles, featuring advanced capabilities and historically significant involvement in conflicts. Their use underscores concerns regarding their destructive capacity and impact on civilian populations, warranting international attention and efforts to address these concerns in conflict zones.


Q. Which of the following statements regarding the Kh-22 and Kh-32 missiles is correct?

A) Kh-32, an updated variant of Kh-22, was designed primarily for anti-aircraft carrier operations and entered service in 1962.

B) The Kh-22 missile, introduced in 2016, features a smaller warhead and longer range compared to the Kh-32 variant.

C) Kh-32 possesses flight characteristics that make it invulnerable to enemy interception due to its ability to evade radar detection and change targets mid-flight.

D) Both Kh-22 and Kh-32 are hypersonic missiles designed for high-altitude engagement, posing challenges for air defense systems due to their slower speeds and low-altitude dives.

Answer: C)