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This writeup is intended to provide a short breakdown of the nuclear capability of the Chinese nation as of the end of 2002. Many of these numbers are no longer accurate, although they are the best known declassified figures available. However, the specifications for the various delivery vehicles and their payloads etc are still thought to be accurate.

Introduction

The Chinese nuclear deterrent/aggressor force falls under the designation of the Second Artillery Corps of the People's Liberation Army, consisting of approximately 120,000 personnel and roughly 300 nuclear warheads. Although this is far less than the thousands employed by the US and Russia, this force is still more than enough to strategically decimate the population of any country on earth. According to the China Central Military Commission (CMC), the Second Artillery Corps is given priority funding over all other PLA units. Although the SAC makes up only 4% of the PLA, it receives nearly 15% of the defense budget and 20% of the total procurement budget. When the PLA downsized by 1 million personnel in the 1980s, the SAC increased its total size.

The Second Artillery Corps has its headquarters in Qinghe, a suburb of Beijing, and maintains at least seven missile bases. Each of these contains one to three missile brigades and regiment-level special departments responsible for chemical defense, communications, training, security, and four launch battalions. Each base also has training units and warhead maintenance teams, and reports directly to the Second Artillery Corps commander. Each missile brigade commands a number of permanent launch sites. For ease of maintenace, each missile brigade is responsible for only one variant of missile.
NB: 'Dong Feng' translates to 'East Wind', and 'Julang' translates to 'Great Wave'

Missile Units

80301 Unit: Headquartered in Shenyang, Liaoning Province. Its complement of DF-3A and DF-21 covers the Korean peninsula and Japan, including Okinawa.
80302 Unit: Headquartered in Huangshan, Anhui Province. This unit is the point unit for strikes against Taiwan. The 815th brigade in Leping took part in the March 1996 missile exercises off the coast of Taiwan. During a wartime situation the 815th would disperse to prearranged sites in Fujian Province in order to strike the entire island of Taiwan. Missiles are usually transported by rail for field deployment.
80303 Unit: Headquarted in Kunming, Yunnan Province. Its complement of DF-3A and DF-21 missiles can strike targets in India and south-east Asia.
80304 Unit: Headquartered in Luoyang, Henan Province. Its DF-5 missiles can strike targets throughout the United States and Europe.
80305 Unit: Headquartered in Huaihua, Hunan Province. Its DF-4 missiles can strike Guam.
80306 Unit: Headquartered in Xining, Qinghai Province. Its DF-4 missiles can strike targets in India and Russia. This unit may also have an experimental weapons division attached to it.

Ground-based Missile Types

Dong Feng-4 ICBM


RANGE    -  4,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 3 MEGATON THERMONUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  TWO STAGE LIQUID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  STRAP DOWN INERTIAL 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 300 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 20


Dong Feng-5 (CSS-4) ICBM
RANGE    -  7,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 3 MEGATON THERMONUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  TWO STAGE LIQUID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  STRAP DOWN INERTIAL 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 300 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 20


Dong Feng-11 Tactical Nuclear Missile
RANGE     -  186 MILES 1993 VERSION
             510 MILES 2002 ADVANCED VERSION
WARHEAD   -  20 KILOTON TACTICAL NUCLEAR
             (1000 KG) 2,200 POUND CONVENTIONAL
ENGINE    -  SOLID PROPELLANT
GUIDANCE  -  STRAP DOWN INERTIAL
C.E.P.    -  LESS THAN 200 METERS

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 400


Dong Feng-15 Tactical Nuclear Missile
RANGE      -  370 MILES (600 KM) 
WARHEAD    -  1,100 LB. (500 KG) CHEMICAL, NUCLEAR OR CONVENTIONAL
              10 KT. NEUTRON (ENHANCED RADIATION) WEAPON 
              20 KT. TACTICAL NUCLEAR WARHEAD 
DIAMETER   -  3.3 FEET (1 METER) 
LENGTH     -  30 FEET (9.1 METERS) 
WEIGHT     -  13,700 POUNDS (6,200 KG) 
ENGINE     -  SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE   -  STRAP DOWN INERTIAL GPS SUPPLIED BY ROCKWELL POSSIBLE FOLLOW ON 
              SAR RADAR ACTIVE TARGETING 
C.E.P.     -  LESS THAN 100 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 400
Learn more...

Dong Feng-21 IRBM
RANGE    -  1,200 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 300 KILOTON THERMONUCLEAR 
            NEW X VERSION WITH 250 KILOTON NUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  TWO STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC/GPS 
            NEW X VERSION ACTIVE RADAR IMAGING MARV 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 200 METERS 
            NEW X VERSION ACCURACY RATED AT 10 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 90


Dong Feng-25 IRBM
RANGE    -  1,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  THREE 250 KILOTON NUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  TWO STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 10 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 10

Submersible Missile Types

Julang-1 SLBM

RANGE    -  1,200 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 300 KILOTON THERMONUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  TWO STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC/GPS 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 200 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = 16 


Julang-2 SLBM
RANGE    -  7,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 2.5 MEGATON THERMONUCLEAR 
            OR THREE 90 KILOTON NUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  THREE STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 300 METERS 

NUMBER DEPLOYED = (UNKNOWN)

Learn more...

Developmental Missile Types

Dong Feng-31 ICBM

RANGE    -  7,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 2.5 MEGATON THERMONUCLEAR 
            OR THREE 90 KILOTON NUCLEAR 
ENGINE   -  THREE STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 300 METERS


Dong Feng-41 ICBM
RANGE    -  7,500 MILES 
WARHEAD  -  SINGLE 500 KILOTON MARV EVADER WARHEAD 
ENGINE   -  THREE STAGE SOLID PROPELLANT 
GUIDANCE -  INERTIAL/FIBER OPTIC 
C.E.P.   -  LESS THAN 100 METERS


Sources
Janes' Strategic Missile Database
http://www.softwar.net
Various news sources

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