Improving the air defense system of the PRC against the background of strategic rivalry with the United States (part 7)

Improving the air defense system of the PRC against the background of strategic rivalry with the United States (part 7)
Improving the air defense system of the PRC against the background of strategic rivalry with the United States (part 7)
Anonim

At present, China has caught up with Russia in terms of the number of deployed medium and long-range anti-aircraft missile systems. At the same time, the process of replacing outdated air defense systems with liquid-propellant missiles with new anti-aircraft systems with solid-propellant missiles is very active.

Until the early 1990s, the most long-range and high-altitude firepower of the Chinese air defense forces was the first generation HQ-2 air defense system, created on the basis of the Soviet S-75 (more details here). In the second half of the 1980s, on the basis of samples received from Egypt, the HQ-2V air defense system (with a launcher on the chassis of a light tank) and HQ-2J (towed) were created in the PRC. The most widespread modification was the HQ-2J, the later versions of which are still on alert. In terms of its capabilities, the HQ-2J complex came close to the Soviet C-75M Volga air defense system. However, the Chinese designers failed to achieve the range and noise immunity characteristics of the S-75M3 Volkhov air defense system with the B-759 (5Ya23) air defense system. Serial production of the HQ-2J air defense system ended approximately 15 years ago. Until recently, complexes of the first generation with missiles fueled with liquid fuel and a caustic oxidizer were the most widespread in the PLA air defense system.

Improving the air defense system of the PRC against the background of strategic rivalry with the United States (part 7)

In the 21st century, a significant part of the most recent HQ-2J air defense systems underwent a major modernization aimed at increasing noise immunity and increasing the number of simultaneously fired targets. For this, a multifunctional radar with AFAR H-200, developed for the HQ-12 anti-aircraft missile system, was introduced into the HQ-2J. According to information published in the Chinese media, the non-modernized HQ-2 is being massively removed from service. The remaining infrastructure and launch sites after reconstruction are used to deploy anti-aircraft missile systems: HQ-9, HQ-12 and HQ-16.

By the early 1980s, it became clear that China was far behind in the field of modern air defense systems. At that time, attempts were made in the PRC to independently design medium and long-range air defense systems. But due to the lack of experience and the inability of the radio-electronic industry of the PRC to create world-class products, their own developments were not brought to mass production. Nevertheless, the accumulated results and developments were useful in the creation of short and medium-range anti-aircraft systems, which were a conglomerate of technical solutions borrowed from Western models and their own design findings.

In 1989, at the aerospace show in Dubai, the HQ-7 short-range air defense system was first demonstrated. This complex was created as part of the Chinese-French defense cooperation based on the Crotale mobile air defense system.

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The battery of the HQ-7 air defense missile system includes a combat control vehicle with a radar for detecting air targets (range 18 km) and three armored combat vehicles with radio command guidance stations, each of which has 4 missiles.

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In the modernized HQ-7V air defense system, a battery command post is used, equipped with a radar with a phased array (detection range of 25 km), and the maximum missile launch range has been increased from 12 to 15 km. At the same time, noise immunity and the likelihood of damage are significantly increased. According to Chinese data, in a simple jamming environment at a distance of 12 km, the probability of destroying a MiG-21 type target flying at a speed of 900 km / h with a two-missile salvo is 0.95.SAM HQ-7 / 7В are in service with the air defense units of the Ground Forces, and is used by the Air Force to protect airfields.

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Anti-aircraft missile systems of this type in the past covered large air bases located along the Taiwan Strait. For combat duty to protect stationary objects from the anti-aircraft missile battalion, one of three fire batteries was usually allocated on a rotational basis. Duration of duty is 10 days.

Airbases and long-range anti-aircraft missile systems are also covered by the HQ-64, HQ-6D and HQ-6A air defense systems. As part of these complexes, missiles are used, created on the basis of the Italian medium-range aviation missile with a semi-active homing head Aspide Mk.1. The Italian missile, in turn, has much in common with the American AIM-7 Sparrow air-to-air missile. In the mid-80s, within the framework of military-technical cooperation, Italy supplied the documentation for the Aspide Mk.1 SD. On the basis of an Italian license and components in the PRC in 1989, the assembly of anti-aircraft missiles and air-to-air missiles, designed to arm the J-8II interceptors, began. But after the events in Tiananmen Square, the supply of parts for assembling missiles stopped. In this regard, a limited number of HQ-61 air defense systems were built, which, moreover, had serious reliability problems. Currently, all HQ-61 air defense systems have been decommissioned.

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Only in the second half of the 90s did the Chinese industry manage to master the independent production of a clone of the Chinese "Aspid". The missile, adapted for use as part of the air defense missile system, received the designation LY-60.

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The LY-60 anti-aircraft missile with a mass of 220 kg, when launched from a ground-based launcher, accelerates to 1200 m / s and is capable of hitting air targets at a range of up to 15,000 m.Currently, the LY-60 anti-aircraft missile is used in mobile complexes HQ-64, HQ-6D and HQ -6A. Unlike the HQ-61 air defense system on the HQ-64, which was put into service in 2001, the missiles are housed in closed transport and launch containers. At the same time, the number of missiles ready for use on a self-propelled launcher has been increased from two to four.

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It is reported that thanks to the use of more energy-intensive solid fuel, the rocket speed has been increased to 4 M, and the launch range has also increased to 18,000 m. Hardware reliability and radar detection range have been increased. On the next modification, HQ-6D, it is possible to integrate the air defense system into a long-range air defense system, and thanks to the introduction of new microprocessors, the information processing speed and the number of target channels have been increased. New missiles with an active radar seeker have been introduced into the ammunition load, which makes it possible to implement the “fire and forget” mode. The HQ-6A (artillery) modification includes a 30-mm seven-barreled anti-aircraft artillery mount Ture 730 with a radar-optical guidance system, created on the basis of the Dutch shipborne anti-aircraft artillery complex "Goalkeeper".

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There is reason to believe that the previously built HQ-6D air defense systems are being upgraded to the HQ-6A level. A two-axle trailer with an anti-aircraft gun Ture 730 is added to the control center of the anti-aircraft missile system. It is believed that this increases the capabilities of the HQ-6A complex to destroy low-altitude air targets, which has become anti-aircraft missile and artillery. According to the reference data, at least 20 HQ-6D / 6A air defense systems are on alert as part of the PRC air defense system.

The HQ-12 belongs to the medium-range air defense system of its own design. The design of this complex, intended to replace the HQ-2 air defense system, was initiated in 1979. However, the creation of a solid-propellant anti-aircraft missile with the same range and altitude as that of the HQ-2 air defense missile system turned out to be a very difficult task. The first prototype, known as the KS-1, was presented to the general public in 1994. At the same time, in combination with solid-propellant missiles, the SJ-202V missile guidance station, which was part of the HQ-2J air defense system, was used. However, the characteristics of this air defense system turned out to be lower than planned, and orders for it from the Chinese military did not follow.

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Only 30 years after the start of development, the Chinese anti-aircraft missile forces received the first HQ-12 (KS-1A) air defense systems. The main difference was the new multifunctional radar with AFAR N-200 and missiles with semi-active radar seeker. The HQ-12 anti-aircraft missile division includes a missile detection and guidance radar, six mobile launchers, which have a total of 12 ready-to-use missiles and 6 transport-loading vehicles with 24 missiles.

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According to information presented at international aerospace shows, an anti-aircraft missile weighing 900 kg is capable of hitting air targets at a range of 7-45 km. Maximum target speed - 750 m / s, overload - 5 g. To date, the HQ-12 air defense system is largely obsolete. Nevertheless, its serial production and deployment continues. The air defense forces of the PRC have at least 20 HQ-12 anti-aircraft battalions.

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After the normalization of relations between our countries, Beijing expressed interest in acquiring modern air defense systems. In 1993, the PRC received four S-300PMU anti-aircraft missile systems. The contract, signed at the end of 1991, was worth $ 220 million. Before the start of supplies, several dozen Chinese specialists had been trained in Russia. The S-300PMU air defense systems delivered to the PRC included 32 trailed 5P85T launchers with a KrAZ-265V tractor. Each towed installation had 4 transport and launch containers with 5V55R missiles. The S-300PMU air defense system is capable of firing at 6 air targets simultaneously at a distance of up to 75 km, with two missiles being guided at each target.

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In total, within the framework of the contact, 256 anti-aircraft missiles were sent to the PRC - that is, for each launcher there was a main and additional ammunition load. In 1994, 120 additional missiles were delivered from Russia for training firing.

The S-300PMU anti-aircraft missile system was an export version of the S-300PS with towed launchers. In terms of firing range and the number of simultaneously fired targets, the S-300PMU air defense system was an order of magnitude superior to the Chinese HQ-2J air defense system. An important factor was that the 5V55R solid-propellant missiles did not require maintenance for 10 years. Control firing at the "Site No. 72" training ground in the desert region of Gansu province in northwestern China made a great impression on the Chinese military leadership, after which it was decided to conclude a new contract for the purchase of the S-300P. In 1994, another Russian-Chinese agreement was signed for the purchase of 8 divisions of the improved S-300PMU-1 (export version of the S-300PM) worth $ 400 million. The contract provided for the supply of 32 5P85SE / DE launchers and 196 48N6E missiles. The improved missiles have a firing range of up to 150 km. Half of the contract was paid for by barter deals for the purchase of Chinese consumer goods.

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In 2003, China expressed its intention to acquire the improved S-300PMU-2 (export version of the S-300PM2 air defense system). The order included 64 PU 5P85SE2 / DE2 and 256 ZUR 48N6E2. The first divisions were delivered to the customer in 2007. The improved anti-aircraft system is capable of simultaneously firing at 6 air targets at a distance of up to 200 km and an altitude of up to 27 km. With the adoption of the S-300PMU-2, the PLA's air defense for the first time received limited capabilities to intercept operational-tactical ballistic missiles at a range of up to 40 km.

According to data published in open sources, the PRC delivered: 4 S-300PMU missiles, 8 S-300PMU1 missiles and 12 S-300PMU2 missiles. Moreover, each divisional kit includes 6 launchers. As a result, it turns out that China has acquired 24 S-300PMU / PMU-1 / PMU-2 divisions with 144 launchers. Taking into account that the assigned resource of the S-300PMU is 25 years, the first "three hundred" delivered to the PRC are at the end of their life cycle. In addition, the production of missiles of the 5V55 (V-500) family was completed more than 15 years ago, and the guaranteed shelf life in a sealed TPK is 10 years.Based on this, it can be assumed that the first 4 S-300PMU divisions, delivered in 1993, will soon be removed from combat duty.

Almost immediately after the S-300PMU appeared at the disposal of the PLA air defense forces, work began in the PRC to create an air defense system of the same class. However, one should not think that long-range anti-aircraft missile systems with solid-propellant missiles were an absolutely unknown topic for Chinese specialists. By the end of the 80s, there were developments in China for effective formulations of solid rocket fuel, and cooperation with Western firms made it possible to advance electronics. A significant contribution was made by Chinese intelligence, in the West it is believed that when creating the HQ-9 air defense system, a lot was borrowed from the MIM-104 Patriot long-range air defense system. So American experts write about the similarity of the multifunctional Chinese radar HT-233 with the AN / MPQ-53, which is part of the Patriot air defense system. At the same time, there is no doubt that a number of technical solutions were spotted by the designers of the China Academy of Defense Technology in the Soviet S-300P system. In the first modification of the HQ-9 air defense system, command-guided missiles with radar sighting through the missile were used. Correction commands are transmitted to the missile board via a two-way radio channel by a radar for illumination and guidance. The same scheme was used in the 5V55R missiles delivered to the PRC together with the S-300PMU.

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Just as in the S-300P, the Chinese HQ-9 air defense system uses a vertical launch without first turning the launcher towards the target. The composition and principle of operation of the HQ-9 air defense system is also similar to the C-300P. In addition to a multifunctional tracking and guidance radar, a mobile command post, the division includes a Type 120 low-altitude detector and a Type 305B search radar, created on the basis of the YLC-2 standby radar. The HQ-9 launcher is based on the Taian TA-5380 four-axle chassis and looks like the Russian S-300PS. In total, an anti-aircraft missile division can have up to nine self-propelled launchers, but usually there are six of them. Thus, the ready-to-use ammunition load is 24 missiles. The HT-233 fire control radar is capable of simultaneously tracking up to 100 targets and firing at 6 of them, aiming 2 missiles at each.

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The creation of the HQ-9 air defense system proceeded at an accelerated pace, and in 1997 the first pre-production sample was demonstrated. The characteristics of the HQ-9 of the first modification are not reliably known, apparently, the original Chinese air defense systems in range did not exceed the S-300PMU-1 / PMU-2 air defense systems purchased in Russia. According to advertising data announced during aerospace shows and weapons exhibitions, the export version of the FD-2000 uses an anti-aircraft missile weighing 1300 kg, with a warhead mass of 180 kg. The maximum missile speed is 4.2 M. Firing range: 6-120 km (for the HQ-9A modification - up to 200 km). Interception altitude: 500-25000 m. According to the developer, the system is capable of intercepting ballistic missiles within a radius of 7 to 25 km. The deployment time from the march is about 6 minutes, the reaction time is 12-15 seconds.

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Currently, the improvement of the HQ-9 air defense system is actively continuing. In addition to the modernized anti-aircraft system HQ-9A, which was put into service in 2001 and is being built in series, it is known about the tests of the HQ-9B - with expanded anti-missile properties, which allows intercepting ballistic missiles with a range of up to 500 km. This anti-aircraft system, tested in 2006, uses infrared-guided missiles at the end of the trajectory. The HQ-9C model uses an extended-range missile defense system with an active radar homing head. Also, a missile with a passive radar seeker, effective against electronic warfare and AWACS aircraft, was introduced into the ammunition load. Chinese representatives stated that thanks to the use of high-speed processors, the data processing speed and the issuance of guidance commands on modern modifications have increased several times compared to the first model HQ-9.

The HQ-19 heavy interceptor missile system is designed to combat medium-range tactical and ballistic missiles, as well as satellites in low orbits. In China, this system is called an analogue of the Russian S-500. To defeat targets, it is proposed to use a kinetic tungsten warhead, designed for a direct hit. The course is corrected in the final section with the help of miniature disposable jet engines, of which there are more than a hundred on the warhead. According to American data, the adoption of the HQ-19 into service may occur in 2021, after which a missile defense system will appear in the Chinese armed forces capable of fighting ballistic missiles with a launch range of up to 3,000 km.

In the past, the PRC stated that during the range firing, the Chinese HQ-9C / B air defense systems demonstrated capabilities that are not inferior to the Russian S-300PMU-2 anti-aircraft missile system. According to information published in the United States, obtained by means of radio and satellite reconnaissance, in 2018, 16 divisions of HQ-9 air defense systems were deployed in the PLA air defense.

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However, no breakdown by modification is provided. Western experts believe that at present, anti-aircraft systems built after 2007 are mainly in operation. The PRC claims that thanks to the progress achieved in the creation of new materials and alloys, the development of compact high-speed electronics and solid rocket fuel with high energy characteristics, when creating the HQ-9, it was possible to create a third-generation anti-aircraft missile system, bypassing the second generation.

In 2011, an official source of the People's Liberation Army of China acknowledged the existence of the HQ-16 air defense system. Western reference publications say that during the creation of the HQ-16 air defense system, the latest Russian developments in the Buk family of air defense systems were used. The serial modification, in which, based on the results of military tests, the identified deficiencies were eliminated, is known as the HQ-16A.

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Outwardly, the missile used in the HQ-16A strongly resembles the Soviet 9M38M1 missile defense system, and also has a semi-active radar guidance system, but the Chinese complex has a vertical missile launch and is more suitable for long-term combat duty in a stationary position.

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The main purpose of the HQ-16A air defense system is to combat tactical and carrier-based aircraft, special attention was also paid to the possibility of hitting low-altitude air targets with a minimum RCS. According to Global Security, the first variant of the HQ-16 had a firing range of up to 40 km. A rocket weighing 615 kg and a length of 5.2 m develops a speed of up to 1200 m / s. SAM HQ-16A can intercept an air target flying at an altitude of 15 m to 18 km. The probability of hitting one missile defense system for cruise missiles flying at an altitude of 50 meters at a speed of 300 m / s is 0.6, for a target of the MiG-21 type at the same speed and an altitude of 3-7 km - the probability of hitting is 0.85. HQ-16B modifications, the maximum launch range for subsonic targets flying in the altitude range of 7-12 km has been increased to 70 km. According to the official version, this anti-aircraft missile system should take an intermediate position between HQ-12 and HQ-9.

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The battery of the HQ-16A air defense missile system includes 4 launchers and an illumination and missile guidance station. The direction of the actions of anti-aircraft batteries is carried out from the divisional command post, where information is received from the three-dimensional all-round radar. There are three fire batteries in the division.

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All elements of the HQ-16A air defense system are located on a three-axle Taian TA5350 off-road chassis. The HQ-16A division can travel at a speed of 85 km / h on paved roads, a cruising range of 1000 km. It is capable of crossing vertical obstacles up to 0.5 m in height, trenches up to 0.6 m and forcing a ford with a depth of 1.2 m without preparation. Each SPU has 6 ready-to-use anti-aircraft missiles. Thus, the total ammunition load of the anti-aircraft battalion is 72 missiles. As of 2017, the PLA air defense forces had at least 4 HQ-16A missiles.

A three-coordinate all-round radar with a phased array is capable of seeing a fighter-type target at a range of 140 km and an altitude of up to 20 km. The capabilities of the radar allow you to detect up to 144 and track up to 48 targets simultaneously. The guidance station of the HQ-16A air defense missile system is capable of tracking targets at a distance of up to 80 km, simultaneously tracking 6 targets and firing at 4 of them, aiming two missiles at each.

It is reported that the PRC successfully tested the HQ-16V air defense system with an increased launch range. Also in 2016, information appeared about the HQ-26 complex, in which, by increasing the diameter of the rocket, its accelerating characteristics were increased, and the range of destruction, according to unconfirmed data, is 120 km. At the same time, the anti-missile capabilities of the complex have been significantly expanded. If the Chinese specialists really managed to create an air defense system with the declared characteristics, then in terms of its combat capabilities it may be close to the newest Russian air defense system S-350 "Vityaz".

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