Monday, February 26, 2018

The Kings Of The East: China's Growing Deadly Arsenal Of Weapons

China’s Terrifying And Deadly Arsenal Of Weapons

CHINA now has the ability to strike enemy targets with millimetre-level precision after sending Beidou 3 satellites into orbit to boost its space-based navigation system. 
The move is the latest in a long list of military upgrades from the People’s Liberation Army, with China’s military looking to assert dominance on the battlefield.
From stealth fighter jets to long-range air-to-air missiles to an increased push into artificial intelligence and quantum computing, China’s progress in military technology is about to pose a serious threat to the rest of the world.

The progress is so troubling, admiral Harry Harris — head of the US military’s enormous Pacific Command — has issued a scary warning about China’s capabilities.

“China’s impressive military build-up could soon challenge the United States across almost every domain,” he told News Asia earlier this month.

“Key advancements include fielding significant improvements in missile systems, developing fifth-generation fighter aircraft capabilities, and growing the size and capability of the Chinese navy to include their first overseas base in the port of Djibouti.”
While China is working toward building enhancing many different types of technology to bolster its military presence, here are the developments of most concern.
The first experimental deployment of a new ‘supergun’ aboard a warship is one of the most high profile additions to China’s military.
Images of the weapon, which places China ahead of the United States, first surfaced after being leaked by defence analyst Dafeng Cao who observes China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy.
Cao sourced a number of images of a PLAN Type 072III-class warship, apparently showing a rail gun on board.
The weapon uses powerful magnets to sling warheads down its barrel and into the air, with the ammunition able to be fired faster and further than traditional cannons.
Once fully operational, the weapon could destroy aircraft and missiles in flight at ranges and accuracy normally reserved for missiles, while also being powerful enough to sink ships.
The Chinese government newspaper has boasted about the technology, which has been developed since a major breakthrough in electromagnetic research in 2015.
“Railguns use electromagnetic energy to attack targets and are considered an advanced technology that offers greater range and more lethality, while the cost is even cheaper than traditional guns,” the report states.
“Though the test rail gun is not the final version of the hi-tech weapon, its size does fit the 055 destroyer, which would become an invincible vessel once equipped with electromagnetic weapons.”
Hypersonic missiles are capable of flying faster than 5,000 kilometres per hour without losing maneuverability.
Such features enable the weapon to penetrate most missile defences and lessen the timelines for a response by a nation under attack.
The technology is so troubling that a report recently recommended “the United States, Russia, and China should agree not to export complete hypersonic missile systems or their major components”.
However, it appears the warning was lost on China, with the military testing the DF-17 — a ballistic missile combined with a hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) — last November.
An anonymous U.S. government source told The Diplomatthe weapon was tested on two different occasions.
In one of the tests the missile’s payload flew to a range of approximately 1,400 kilometres, with the source saying the missile successfully made impact at a site in Xinjiang Province “within meters” of the intended target.
As HGVs stop short of entering space and they shoot down to Earth at hypersonic speeds, they pose challenges for early-warning satellites and missile-defence systems.
According to U.S. intelligence assessments, the DF-17 is expected to reach initial operating capability around 2020, with the weapon expected to be capable of delivering both nuclear and conventional warheads.


In an attempt to surpass the US in air superiority, China launched its first stealth fighter into fully operational, frontline service.
According to Washington defence think-tank, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the multi-role J-20 offers the People’s Liberation Army Air Force a huge advantage in the sky.
“Designed for enhanced stealth and maneuverability, the J-20 has the potential to provide China with a variety of previously unavailable air combat options and enhance its capability to project power,” the CSIS wrote.
With a true “fifth generation” aircraft design, the J-20 is believed to be superior to the F-35 Lighting II strike fighter used the US and Australia.
Powered by two jet engines, the J-20 has more power than other stealth fighters, while also giving the ability to survive an engine failure.
Hidden in the aircraft’s body are three large internal weapon bays — two smaller bays carry air-to-air missiles, while the larger third bay hides anti-ship or air-to-surface missiles and bombs.
The J-20 is also believed to be equipped with full 360 degree infra-red/electro-optic detection systems — this allows the pilot to look in any direction
It is suggested the J-20s radar profile would make it an invisible interceptor, which will allow China to shoot down an opposing aircraft or unleashing its missiles without being detected.


As part of the country’s efforts to assert itself as an emerging maritime power in the contested South China Sea, the PLA is building up its remote outposts with military facilities including missile shelters, sensor arrays, and radar systems.
In January, the South China Morning Post reported the PLA introduced a new underwater surveillance network designed to help China’s submarines get a stronger lock on targets, while also offering protection for the nation’s interests along the maritime Silk Road.
The system, which uses buoys, surface vessels, satellites and underwater gliders, is able to gathering a plethora of data about the underwater environment from the South China Sea, and the Western Pacific and Indian oceans.
Information is sent in real-time to three intelligence centres where it is processed and analysed, with the data used to improve navigation and positioning, plus giving the ability to accurately track target vessels.

In addition to the surveillance network, China’s submarines will be equipped with a powerful on-board forecasting system which uses algorithms to predict water conditions if the vessel cannot surface to collect data from satellites or ground-based stations.
“Our system can help tip the balance of power in these regions in China’s favour,” Mr Yongqiang said.


US intelligence agencies believe within the next few years China could possess “destructive” weapons for use in a potential space conflict.
According to a report, the country will use anti-satellite weapons such as ballistic missiles to damage space-based systems.
“We assess that, if a future conflict were to occur involving Russia or China, either country would justify attacks against U.S. and allied satellites as necessary to offset any perceived U.S. military advantage derived from military, civil, or commercial space systems,” the report read.
“Russian and Chinese destructive ASAT (antisatellite) weapons probably will reach initial operational capability in the next few years. China’s PLA has formed military units and begun initial operational training with counterspace capabilities that it has been developing, such as ground-launched ASAT missiles.
“Of particular concern, Russia and China continue to launch “experimental” satellites that conduct sophisticated on-orbit activities, at least some of which are intended to advance counterspace capabilities. Some technologies with peaceful applications — such as satellite inspection, refuelling, and repair — can also be used against adversary spacecraft.”


An official PLA publication said the simulated reconnaissance mission saw the entire group of drones operated together as a single entity, with unspecified portions of the flight conducted autonomously.
Former director of the institute of electromechanical engineering and automation Professor SHEN Lin Cheng said the tests had achieved a breakthrough in parallel perception, behavioural intention prediction and autonomous flight control.
“The team has been working for nine months on the preparation of this swarm test, sometimes we have to do a hundred test flights a day,” he told East Pendulum.
“We have precise short, medium and long term objectives, which are consistent with those set by the government on the modernisation of the Chinese armed forces by 2020, 2035 and 2050.”

No comments: