BEIJING, November 4 (ChinaMil) -- The media recently introduced China's "HJ-8 anti-tank missile system", saying that 20 countries in the world are currently equipped with HJ-8, and over ten thousand of HJ-8 missiles have been exported. The media also reported that the missile has the "World's No. 1 destruction capability."
"Comparison of performance and operational capability of different anti-tank missiles requires a lot of experimental and operational data," said Professor Ma Jianguang, a military expert and deputy director of the Center for International Studies at the National University of Defense Technology.
"Subjective speculation alone is not enough to judge whether a certain kind of missile is the ‘World's No. 1'. But compared with the international rivals at the same level and of the same type such as the U.S. 'Tow 2', HJ-8 is more cost-effective and therefore HJ-8 is more popular in the international market," added Ma Jianguang.
Long history of HJ anti-tank missile
Data show that China began the development of HJ anti-tank missiles in the 1960s. "HJ-73" is the first generation of anti-tank missile equipped in China’s armed forces. Subsequently, HJ-8 and HJ-9 anti-tank missiles were developed and equipped in the armed forces. The HJ-10 multi-purpose weapon system made its debut on the V-Day parade held in Beijing not long ago.
Ma Jianguang introduced that HJ-10 is the new-type long-range multi-purpose missile. It is a fiber-optic guided missile with strong concealment and anti-jamming capabilities. Control personnel can adjust the direction of the HJ-10 missile after launch, with the help of its real-time video monitoring function, in the event of false targets or high value targets.
The maximum range of HJ-10 is ten kilometers. This is beyond the firepower scope of most tanks.
“The deployment of HJ-10 indicates that China's anti-tank missile technology is constantly catching up with the world," Ma Jianguang said.
Features of future anti-tank missiles
Ma Jianguang analyzed that the development of new materials technology, simple fire control technology and guidance technology provide technical basis for anti-tank missiles.
At present, the U.S. Javelin is the only fourth generation anti-tank missile with mature application. However, in the future, there will be a number of technological breakthroughs in anti-tank missiles, Ma Jianguang said
The first is the development of new warhead to enhance lethality.
The second is the change of attack mode to improve armor penetration power. The armor protection on the top of the tank is relatively weak, so hedgehopping upper armor attack can significantly increase the probability of destruction.
The third is the development of dual/multi-mode guidance technology to enhance anti-jamming capability. In this way, the missile will have a "fire and forget" capability and can increase accuracy under bad weather conditions and in night operations.
The fourth is the development of ultra-high-speed kinetic energy anti-tank missiles. Ultra-high-speed kinetic energy missiles have strong lethality and thus can "hit and destroy."
In addition, the development of multi-purpose anti-tank missiles and the development of high-performance engine to expand the attack radius are also important future directions.
Ma Jianguang predicted that the developing trend of anti-tank missiles will be all-weather, multi-purpose, low cost and intelligent. In the future, anti-tank missiles will have a wider range of usage.