China Conducts Main Drills With HQ-22 Air Protection Missiles; Makes use of Heavy Lifter Y-20 Navy Plane To Switch Them

Throughout a current navy train, China employed a robust long-range surface-to-air missile (SAM) system, the HQ-22, in an uncommon method. The Individuals’s Liberation Army Air Power (PLAAF) transported it from its dwelling base within the Southern Theater Command (STC) to north central, far northern, and northwestern areas.

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Described as a “systematic confrontational” train, it was flown in China’s domestically developed strategic airlift Y-20 plane to northwest China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Area, northern China’s Internal Mongolia Autonomous Area, and northwestern China’s Gansu Province.

A International Occasions report quoted consultants saying it’s going to considerably improve China’s air protection functionality.

China’s Third-Finest Lengthy-Vary Air Protection Platform

The HQ-22 is the PLAAF’s third main long-range surface-to-air missile (SAM) system after the S-300 and the S-400.

On this “systematic confrontational” train, the PLAAF examined its fast deployment functionality by flying with Y-20 giant transport plane. “This methodology will considerably improve China’s air protection flexibility,” the report within the International Occasions added.

The SAM platform, which has a variety of roughly 170 kilometers, can have interaction plane, jets, helicopters, cruise missiles, and drones. Every HQ-22 anti-aircraft missile system has three launchers and 4 transport-launch containers every and may direct 12 anti-aircraft guided missiles concurrently at six targets. Every missile has a semi-active radar as a homing head.

The final motion of the HQ-22 was reported on August 2 final yr, throughout US Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s go to to Taiwan. Movies on social media and the data accompanying them mentioned China was transferring them to the coast when it retaliated with huge live-fire air and naval maneuvers across the island.

Probably the automobile is carrying the radar of the HQ-22 battery, rolling into the Y-20’s maintain.

Stationed in Southwest China’s border area, the missile battalion is affiliated with the PLA’s Southern Theater Command. The PLAAF maneuvers additionally noticed the participation of different aerial fight models, land-based surface-to-surface, and SAM platforms.

Aimed To Get All Working Collectively

International Occasions mentioned the “battalion coordinated with pleasant forces in opposition to hostile ones, simulated greater than 50 missile launches, and defended in opposition to over 30 systematic targets in mock combats.”

The CCTV report included footage exhibiting an HQ-22 air protection missile launcher automobile getting into a Y-20 giant transport plane.

Lengthy-range, speedy deployment of heavy surface-to-air missiles has nice tactical and even strategic significance, because it allows the PLA to boost regional air protection flexibly, in line with an unnamed Chinese language navy professional quoted by GT.

The PLAAF’s Y-20 transport airplane seems significantly central to your entire scheme of issues since its presence in giant numbers does permit loads of navy and military-oriented motion inside the nation.

Furthermore, since China doesn’t intention to battle expeditionary wars in faraway lands (besides Taiwan), the place it must switch tens of 1000’s of troops, it leaves the Y-20 free for heavy airlifts inside the nation. It helps the battle effort within the western Pacific.

Furthermore, the International Occasions report added that the PLAAF is “practising” the long-range transport of the HQ-22, which raises the query of whether or not the train was meant to refine its strategic airlift functionality or get the HQ-22 crew used to the totally different areas round China. It seems to be each.

The HQ-22 being loaded onto the Y-20

Transported In Y-20 Earlier than

That is additionally not the primary time that the HQ-22 has been transported within the Y-20 this manner. In April 2022, many Y-20 giant transport plane flew from China to Serbia over a number of consecutive days to ship the FK-3 SAM platform (the HQ-22’s export model) that the Balkan nation bought.

Observers referred to as the mission on the time the biggest abroad operation by the Y-20 and Beijing’s rise as a serious arms exporter.

South China Morning Publish (SCMP) put the determine at six Y-20s flying “12 covert sorties” to move a part of the three FK-3 models. Hong Kong-based navy professional Liang Guoliang estimates 12 Y-20s to haul the total complement of the techniques bought by Serbia.

One other protection of a separate HQ-22 system in CCTV quoted one of many navy personnel saying that the aim was extra in direction of synergizing models utilizing totally different techniques and weapons. “It’s to totally conduct the workouts in all its totally different phases, with totally different models that use totally different weapons on the identical time,” he mentioned.

“The officers and troopers who carried out the air protection mission beneath shut coordination used the simulated countermeasure system to shoot down targets launched by their comrades,” the CCTV reporter mentioned of the separate train.

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