China Ballistic Missiles and Nuclear Arms Thread


Lieutenant General
Registered Member
You have very good PDF on" FAS " with numbers you can see in general out but a true report !

10 DF-5/A
10 DF-5B
8 DF-31
25 DF-31A
18 JL-2 for 4 Jin maybe a class of up to 6 ?

Quite sure DF-5C is not in service yet DF-5B appearing only end 2015..
In fact China have much less ICBM than USA, 400, Russia 310 same for SLBMs and not Strategic
Bombers but much MRBM, SRBMs

I add now seems DF-41 in service since more than year a time yes a time not etc...
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, recent infos to see...
Mentionned 2 Brigades with 6 - 12 TELs each for me have 6 so with reloads we can estimate to 24 missiles.

The number of TELs in a Missile Brigade simple more the missile is big and less there are
36, 12 and 6 quite sure not 18 DF-41 !

10 DF-5/A
10 DF-5B
8 DF-31
25 DF-31A
24? DF-41
18 JL-2 for 4 Jin maybe a class of up to 6 ? seems a 5th in construction.

IMO the reason that china has so many M/SRBM is that due to a lack of a credible long-range attack aviation. As for ICBM, i think that china could have more, but they choose not to, perhabs due to political reasons, to not antagonize western public opinions, unlike russia which only exports energy and doesnt care what the west thinks about them (central/eastern europe depend on russia for natural gas).

Possible also in relation with USSR which have also a strategic missiles forces composed for majority of ICBMs and SLBMs less numerous clearly maximum 1398 and about 600 -800 about SLBMs.
USA also but SLBMs with much more warhead than ICBMs different.
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So I guess ICBM greater than 10,000 km currently looks like,

DF-5/5A/5B: 20 - At least 6 brigades (801st, 803rd, 804th, 805th, 814th, 818th) ??

DF-31A: 25 - At least 3 brigades? (805th, 809th, 812th) ??
DF-41 (low estimate): 6 to 12 - (brigades unknown)
DF-41 (high estimate): 12 to 24 - (brigades unknown)

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So minimum of 51 ICBM with a range of greater than 10,000 km. 31 of these are mobile ICBM. At least 6 of these (DF-41) are off-road capable.

One unknown factor is the new off-road capable DF-31 (DF-31B ??). Test had been rumored to have occurred back in 2014.

Overall China's 2nd-strike capability is looking more secure now. More DF-41, DF-31B and arming them with HGV like DF-ZF in the future will make things more secure without the need to produce thousand of warheads like Russia and US.


Lieutenant General
Nope it was supposed to be bunker busting version of DF 11 Here is the article. There is video about the career of the inspector seconded to the production plant at the end of this article

The documentary series "Life of a Military", broadcast once a week on the Chinese television channel CCTV-7, recently revealed a "new" variant of the DF-11 short-range ballistic missile - the DF-11AZT - hitherto unknown to the general public.

The broadcast does not specifically talk about this ballistic missile, which only appeared for a few seconds on the screen, but a military inspector seconded to the production plant.

It was then when he was telling the story of a series of salvo trial shots, one of which was at the fiasco where the missile was losing itself in the sky, that the scene shows us this mysterious DF-11AZT, Shooting position with his TEL WS-580 vehicle .

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The ballistic missile DF-11AZT during a salvo firing exercise (Image: CCTV-7)

The DF-11 ballistic missile family is at least 40 years old. Its existence is known mainly because it consisted of one of the Chinese weapons of destruction mainly targeting the island of Taiwan in the 90's, but few know that with its defragmenting head, the first version of this missile of a range Of 300 km was above all the last barrier against the hordes of Soviet tanks, which threatened to cross the plain to the north of China at any moment to reach Beijing, the capital of the country.

So what is this variant DF-11AZT? Is she so "new" that?

To answer these questions, we must first understand the meaning of his reference. Although no official explanation has been given so far, but it is assumed that the DF-11AZT would read DF-11A-ZT.

The DF-11A for the extended range variant we have known since 1999, when the model passed its design certification successfully, sign of its entry into active service.

The letter Z, in turn, should mean " Z UAN to" 钻地Chinese and meaning penetrate deeply buried targets. Finally, the letter T, which could be an acronym for " T è zhong" ( 特种), ie "Special".

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The DF-11AZT (Z2) inscription on the ballistic missile cell (Image: CCTV-7)

Also note the "Z2" in brackets and inscribed on the DF-11AZT cell, which could indicate that the missile carries a second penetrating head model.

The development of this type of anti-bunker charge is coherent - many military installations in Taiwan are deeply buried on the ground, such as the command of the armed forces and the anti-aircraft posts, not to mention the fortified hangars where the hundreds Fighter aircraft such as the F-CK-1 , the F-16A / B and the Mirage 2000-5 .

The DF-11AZT would therefore be a short-range ballistic missile, about 600 km long, which would paralyze fortified targets with at least two different penetrating head types.

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Just spotted this at -
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Possible DF-5B silo launch?
7:58 onwards -
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Lieutenant General
Yes 8th test of glide warhead DF ZF. They are close of being in service

On May 18, 1980, 37 years ago, China carried out its first and only intercontinental full-scope ballistic test with what they called the "transport rocket" , Actually the DF-5 ballistic missile , which hit an area of 70 nautical miles in the southern Pacific Ocean.

37 years later, and as if to commemorate this important date, Chinese rocket forces seem to have conducted a large-scale trial in the western part of China this day.

In addition to 9 aerial segments closed to aircraft over a wide area measuring 1,270 km in length and 330 km in width, a large 422,308 km² fallout area in Xinjiang Province was also notified and prohibited. 'access.

This figure of 422,308 km² seems little, but it is as if 77% of the surface of metropolitan France is totally closed in an armaments test and transformed into zone of fall. No Chinese test in recent years has reserved such a wide security zone, if our tracking is correct.

By way of comparison, the final fallout zone of
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measured only
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km², more than 3 times smaller than that of this test. The last test run of the M51 missile in Operation Bellérophon which took place on July 1, 2015, has only a final fallout zone within a 92 nautical mile radius, or 90,938 km².

According to the 4 airmail messages (NOTAMs) concerned, this test would have taken place between 01:20 and 02:30 UTC, that is from 07:20 to 08:30 hours of Beijing. The shape and orientation of the no-go areas seem to suggest that the launch of any gear originated in eastern China, probably from the Taiyuan Space Launch Center (TSLC), used Frequently in Chinese ballistic tests.

A1119 / 17
Q) ZLHW / QARLC / IV / NBO / E /
000/999 / A) ZLHW B) 1705180110 C) 1705180230
1.W188: LIKMI - GOVSA.

A1118 / 17
Q) ZLHW / QARLC / IV / NBO / E /
000/999 / A) ZLHW B) 1705180110 C) 1705180330

A1125 / 17
Q) ZWUQ / QRTCA / IV / BO / W / 000/999 /
A) ZWUQ B) 1705180120 C) 1705180230
N421010E0953153-N423458E0851212-N420109E0845143-N393631E0780251-N375138E0802409-N381132E0825744- N395343E0921913 BACK TO START.

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In yellow, the area and aerial segments prohibited from overflying. In orange, closed areas partially under 6000 meters (Image: East Pendulum)

So what type of weapons requires such a large fallout zone?

We can start from a first assumption that the more risky the subjects of the test and therefore the people must take precautionary measures, the greater the safety zone must be to avoid collateral damage.

The next question we can ask is, what risks can we have to justify the establishment of a security zone 3 times greater than that for a MiRV test, with a ballistic a priori weapon that must cover about 1,500 To 2,000 km before arriving at this one?

Our first thought goes for a highly maneuverable machine, whose longitudinal and lateral maneuverability exceeds a few tens to see a hundred kilometers of MiRV heads.

Ramjet / Scramjet type hypersonic missiles may already be discarded due to the very long (> 2,000 km) test distance.

The Upper Supersonic / Hypersonic Drone that we have already spoken several times here on East Pendulum could match but the duration of the flight, 80 minutes at the most, is much less than previous flights.

So remains a hypersonic vector that the Chinese have already tested 7 times, a priori all successful, during the last 3 years - the gear Boost-Glide (hypersonic glider).

This type of craft is precisely characterized by its very great lateral maneuverability in terminal approach phase. The United States HTV-2 had 16677 km of rectilinear distance and 5,560 km of lateral deviation, which corresponds to 1/3 of the flight distance.

And if we look again at the areas of this Chinese test, we could distinguish two flight directions - one (in white) that goes from the TSLC center to the Korla site, and the other (red) Taklamakan desert.

The distance of the deviation is also approximately 1/3 of the total range.

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The two flight directions in the test of May 18, 2017 (Image: East Pendulum)

To make sure that the firing direction of this Chinese test remains consistent with the last Boost-Glide tests, we chose to overlap the no-fly zones of the 5th Chinese Boost-Glide test, which took place on 20 August 2015, With those of yesterday.

The 5th test was chosen because, according to Pentagon sources, the Chinese machine, known as the DF-ZF (formerly known as the Wu-14 created by the Americans), carried out "evasive maneuvers "(Evasive actions).

The light colored areas in the diagram at the bottom show the trajectory of this 5th DF-ZF and the last drop zone near Korla illustrates the lateral maneuvers of the craft.

And the result of this superposition shows that the flights of 20 August 2015 and 18 May 2017 could be of the same nature. It can therefore be assumed that the test of May 18, 2017 would correspond to a Boost-Glide machine, also capable of performing lateral deviation but much more importantly.

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The no-fly zones of the 5th Boost-Glide test (blue) and those of 18 May 2017 (Images: East Pendulum)

Of course, other hypotheses are possible and the Boost-Glide machine is only one possibility, perhaps more credible, among many others.

In any case, it is particularly noteworthy that the institutional media of the Chinese Army, such as the "PLA Daily" newspaper, for example, published many articles on rocket forces on 18 May. Knowing the communication habits of the Chinese army, if the test has indeed taken place, it can only be a success.

Note that some of these articles published yesterday even revealed interesting information, such as on the "new" MRBM DF-16 and DF-16A for example, but we will have the opportunity to come back in the near future.

Henri K.