North Korea’s Nuclear Missile Can Hit the US Continent in Just 33 Minutes


A study by a team of Chinese defense scientists concluded that the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile capable of carrying North Korean nuclear warheads could hit the mainland United States in just 33 minutes. Photo/KCNA via REUTERS

BEIJING – The Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that can carry North Korean (North Korea) nuclear warheads can hit the mainland United States (US) in just 33 minutes. This assessment is the result of a study by a team of Chinese defense scientists.

Studies published in Chinese-language journals; Modern Defense Technology, said that if the Hwasong-15 missile was fired from Sunchon, a city in South Pyongan province, central North Korea, the likely target would be the city of Columbia, US state of Missouri.

According to a team of Chinese defense scientists, the Hwasong-15 missile can hit the US mainland in just 33 minutes if the US defense system fails to intercept it.

Quoting a report by the South China Morning Post, Saturday (18/3/2023), the team of scientists who simulated the attack said that the ICBM could hit the central US mainland in 1,997 seconds or about 33 minutes.

The hypothetical missile launch by the team of scientists used the Hwasong-15 missile that North Korea had tested in 2017.

If a Hwasong-15 missile is fired from Sunchon, the study report continues, the US missile defense headquarters will receive an alert about 20 seconds later.

Furthermore, the first wave of interceptor missiles from the US will lift off within 11 minutes from Fort Greely in Alaska and another will be launched from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, that is if the first wave of interceptors fails.

The study also suggests that there are loopholes in Washington’s nuclear defense network such as the “kill chain” system that would have difficulty identifying and defending against attacks that could be used against them.

“A two-stage nuclear-capable missile with an effective range of 13,000 km is sufficient to hit the entire US homeland,” said Tang Yuyan of the Beijing Institute of Electronic System Engineering who also led the research.

US experts doubt that the American defense system is capable of countering North Korea’s nuclear warhead missile attack.

“If North Korea fires a nuclear-armed ICBM at the United States, we can’t be sure that our missile defense system will deter it,” Frederick K Lamb, a physics professor at the University of Illinois, told CNN.


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