Iran has successfully test-launched its most advanced Khorramshahr-class ballistic missile called Kheibar, a medium-range precision-guided missile that can carry a 1,500 kg warhead.
The Khoramshahr 4 missile was unveiled Thursday morning in the presence of Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani during an event marking the 41st anniversary of the liberation of the southwestern city of Khorramshahr.
Kheibar is a liquid-fueled missile with a range of 2,000 kilometers and a warhead weighing 1,500 kilograms, designed by the Ministry of Defense’s Aerospace Industries Organization.
The missile’s extended range, advanced guidance and control system, and improved structural features further solidify Iran’s status as a formidable missile power.
“The message of the Ministry of Defense… is that we are fully committed to defending our country and the achievements of the Islamic Revolution,” Ashtiani said during the unveiling ceremony.
“We are taking steps to equip the Armed Forces in various sectors of defense such as missiles, drones, air defense, and more. Undoubtedly, more (achievements) will be unveiled in the future,” the defense minister stated.
The Khorramshahr class of missiles has impressive strategic and tactical capabilities.
They are known for their unique guidance and control system during the mid-course phase – the longest stretch of flight when the missile is coasting, or freefalling towards its target.
This feature allows Kheibar to control and adjust its trajectory outside the Earth’s atmosphere, and to deactivate its guidance system upon entering the atmosphere, giving it complete immunity against electronic warfare attacks.
“One of the distinguishing features of this missile is its radar evasiveness and the ability to bypass enemy air defenses due to its low radar cross-section (RCS),” Gen. Ashtiani said.
Thanks to its advanced control system, Kheibar’s warhead does not need the typical thin-wing arrangement, which in turn allows the missile to pack up a heavier explosive load.
The Kheibar missile also boasts an incredibly short preparation and launch time.
The use of self-igniting (hypergolic) fuel and the absence of the need for fuel injection and horizontal alignment after the verticalization phase have cut Kheibar’s launch time down to less than 12 minutes.
Furthermore, Kheibar is powered by an advanced liquid-fueled engine that enables the missile to reach speeds of 16 Mach outside the atmosphere and 8 Mach within the atmosphere, giving the missile an exceptional impact force.
The high speed at which the warhead makes an impact with the designated target also prevents enemy air defense systems from detecting, tracking, and taking action to shoot down the missile.
The unveiling of Kheibar marks a significant advancement in Iran’s ballistic missile capabilities and demonstrates the country’s commitment to enhancing its defense and deterrent power.
Iranian officials have long asserted that the country’s military capabilities are entirely meant for defense and that its missile program will never be up for negotiations.