Previously unknown Chinese HQ-22 SAM deployments revealed

28 November 2018

Key Points

  • The HQ-22 SAM system is entering service with the PLAAF in increasing numbers
  • Replacement of extant HQ-2 batteries with HQ-22 systems will complete China's transition to a modern, mobile, strategic SAM force

Satellite imagery captured between 2016 and 2018 reveals 13 HQ-22 medium-range strategic surface-to-air missile (SAM) batteries operational within the People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF). The batteries are largely occupying former HQ-2 strategic SAM positions within the PLA's Central, Northern, and Western Theatre Commands.

The first battery to receive the HQ-22 was the 96th Battalion at Yixian southwest of Beijing. The site was observed operating the HQ-22 in imagery captured in September 2016.

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