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Aero India 2023

China deploys new surface-to-air missile system

The HQ-9 long-range SAM of China. The new HQ-16 SAM has been designed to fill the gap between the HQ-7 short-range SAM and HQ-9 long-range SAM systems.

BEIJING (PTI): China has deployed a new land-based mid-range surface-to-air missile (SAM) system capable of intercepting both high and very low-flying targets, boosting its air defence capability.

The new SAM system called Hongqi-16, or Red Flag-16, was delivered to an air defence unit in the Shenyang Military Region, official media reported.

In a recent drill, two HQ-16 missiles fired by the unit successfully hit aerial targets, according to People's Liberation Army Daily.

Besides engaging aerial targets at high altitude, the mid-range HQ-16 is able to intercept very low-flying targets at a distance of up to 40 km, filling the gap between the HQ-7 short-range SAM and the HQ-9 long-range SAM systems, Lan Yun, editor of Modern Ships, a Beijing-based military magazine, told the state-run Global Times.

According to Modern Navy, the official magazine of the PLA Navy, the naval variant of the missile system, which has been fitted on Type 054A frigates, can intercept sea-skimming missiles that fly less than 10 metres above the sea surface.

In modern air attacks, a large number of land-attack cruise missiles, such as the US Tomahawk missiles, are being used, Lan said. "They fly about 50 meters above the ground to avoid early radar warning and interception attempts".

But the current mid-range SAM missile system HQ-12 can only engage targets that fly 300 meters above ground, according to the promotion brochure of its export version, called the KS-1A system.

"Besides the low-altitude engagement capability, the HQ-16 is also more accurate than the HQ-12. The deployment of the land-based HQ-16 can greatly enhance the mainland's capability to counter modern air attacks," Lan said.


China   Missile  

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