February 7, 2023

Dr. Alexander Sheplyuk, director of the Institute of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, is the third Russian scientist to be arrested this summer on suspicion of treason.

The scientific director of the institute, Vasily Fomin, told the Russian news agency TASS that Shiplyuk was sent to the pre-trial detention center in Lefortovo in Moscow.

His arrest follows the June 27 arrest of the institute’s chief researcher, Anatoly Maslov, who is accused of transmitting classified data to the state regarding hypersonic missiles.

What do you know about the hypersonic missiles launched by Russia at Ukraine

According to the institute’s website, Shiplyuk heads a technology lab with unique wind tunnels designed specifically to simulate hypersonic conditions.

On June 30, the Sovetsky District Court of Novosibirsk arrested another scientist, Dmitry Kolker, a researcher at the Institute of Laser Physics of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

Reuters reported that Kolker was arrested on charges of treason against the state on charges of collaborating with Chinese security services.

Kolker, who was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, died while being transferred from the pre-trial detention center.

The military powers of Russia, China and the United States are developing hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) weapons.

These are highly maneuverable weapons that could theoretically fly at supersonic speeds with trajectory and altitude adjusted to fly under radar detection and around missile defences.

Experts say that such weapons are very difficult to defend.

Russia is believed to have a HGV in its arsenal, the Avangard system, which Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed in 2018 was “virtually invulnerable” to Western air defenses.

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