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|Type||Ballistic surface-to-surface missile|
|Place of origin||China|
|In service||1998 – present|
|Used by||China, Turkey|
|Manufacturer||China Precision Machinery Import and Export Corporation (CPMIEC)|
|Weight||≈ Two tons|
|Warhead||480 kg warhead, conventional or nuclear, maneuverable reentry vehicle|
|impact / proximity|
|80 to 400+ km|
|Inertial / ImIR / TV|
|8 x 8 cross country truck|
The B-611 missile and its derivatives are a series of Chinese short-range ballistic weapons (SRBM) first developed in the late 1990s by the China Precision Machinery Import and Export Corporation (CPMIEC). Typical targets intended for the B-611 include supply lines, warehouses, missiles sites, battery units, command centers, airfields, transportation hubs, and area targets in urban surroundings.
The B-611 missile with the NATO reporting name CSS-X-11, is the follow-on to the earlier Dongfeng-11 (M-11, with the NATO reporting name 'CSS-7'). The missile weighs approximately two tons and is powered by a solid rocket motor. The inertial guidance system with a mechanical gyro, provides an accuracy of Circular error probable (CEP) of 150 meters or better; this can be upgraded with a laser gyro or a fiber-optical gyro based on the customer’s request, thanks to the modular design concept adopted. When combined with other guidance systems such as that controlled by satellite, accuracy is increased ten-fold. Thanks to the same modular design concept, a variety of warheads can be equipped, increasing the versatility of the missile. A typical B-611 battery would include three vehicles, the transporter / erector / launcher (TEL), housing the missile, the communication and command vehicle, and a support vehicle.
The system is highly digitized; the TEL only requires three operators, and can be deployed and operated independently if needed. Its deployment time is less than twenty-five minutes from a traveling state to launch, and any targets within the ±45° sector can be attacked. After launch, it would take less than five minutes to move, thus reducing the risk of possible counterattacks from the enemy. Although the 480 kg payload of a B-611 can include a single tactical nuclear warhead, it is not normally carried.
With the exception of a very limited number in the Chinese military for evaluation purposes, the B-611 has not entered service en masse. Instead, they would later place large orders for the B-611M, the follow-up to the B-611. However, the B-611 found its way to the Turkish military, when CPMIEC (the China Precision Machinery Import-Export Corporation), secured a successful export deal for the B-611. Information provided by CPMIEC assisted after the Turkish Army failed to secure a deal to import M270 rocket launchers, the B-611 missile system was then considered by the Turkish authoritis. Negotiations with CPMIEC was started soon afterwards. After signing a contract for the licensed production of the Chinese WS-1A and WS-1B rockets in Turkey under the name of 'Kasırga' in 1997, a similar contract was signed with CPMIEC for the B-611 SRBM system in 1998, for licensed production of 200+ B-611 missiles in Turkey, at a reported cost of 300 million US dollars.
The Turks renamed the missile the 'J-600T Yıldırım', and developed its own version of the TEL named the F-600T, based on a MAN 26.372 6x6 truck, which is also the chassis of the Turkish-built T-122 'Sakarya' and T-300 'Kasırga' Multi-Barrel Rocket Launchers. This has greatly simplified logistics and reduced costs.
The P-12 SRBM is a development of the B-611; it made its public debut at the sixth Zhuhai Airshow. The P-12 is a shorter version of the B-611 and is vertically launched. The chassis of the TEL is a cross- country 6 x 6 truck, a total of two missiles are carried in an enclosed compartment in the back of the truck. The short deployment time of the B-611 is inherited by the P-12, despite the number of missiles being carried being doubled. During the launch, the first missile is erected and fired, followed quickly by the second; this can be achieved in a minute. Range of the P-12 is 150 km, its warhead is around 300 kg. A variety of warheads can be selected, the cluster warhead of the P-12 contains a total of nineteen sub-munitions.
Designed as a low-cost tactical ballistic missile, the P-12 adopts the same modular design concept inherited from its predecessor, the B-611; this means that sub-systems of the missile can be selected from a wide range of options based on the customers’ requirements. For example, the most basic form of inertial guidance system of the P-12 provide an accuracy of 80 meters or better, but this can be greatly improved to as much as ±2 meters when combined with other measures, such as satellite, radar and optical guidance. Video footage of test firings shown at the seventh Zhuhai Airshow by the developer has revealed that the combined guidance system of the P-12 enables it to hit a target such as an ordinary family house-sized warehouse at its maximum range, but the developer did not reveal the exact types of guidance systems deployed. The P-12 missile has entered Chinese service, along with the B-611M.
A successor to the B-611, the B-611M has been developed for and entered Chinese service, utilizing the experience gained from both the B-611 and P-12 missiles. Its basic performance is similar to that of the B-611, but its firepower is doubled when adopting the same practice as the P-12: putting two missiles on a single TEL. As with the P-12, the two missiles can be erected and launched within a minute - a simultaneous launch is not possible. As with the P-12, the B-611M has some maneuverability at its terminal stage of flight, making it more difficult for the enemy to intercept.
The chassis of the TEL of the B-611M is based on a 8 x 8 cross country truck, (a BeiBen)  at Baotou. Two missiles are stored in the compartment in the back, each with its own launcher / storage container, as opposed to the exposed missiles of the P-12, the rectangular launcher / storage containers of the B-611M are filled with nitrogen for added protection from the environment. As with the B-611M and the P-12, the TEL of the B-611M is capable of fighting independently in an emergency.
The existence of the BP-12 was revealed during the eighth Zhuhai Airshow which had been held at the end of 2010. The BP-12 is the first of the series that branched out of the B-611/P-12 family. In contrast to the B-611/P-12 which adopts inertial guidance, the BP-12 adopts a satellite guidance instead. Through GPS, and based on the best accuracy the commercial GPS could provide, the accuracy of the BP-12 was given by the developer as a CEP of 30 meters or better. After entering Chinese service in very limited numbers for evaluation, the missile was further developed into the Type 621.
The type 621 missile is the first development of the BP-12, which incorporates additional satellite guidance systems such as Glonass and Beidou, (in case GPS is not available). The external visual difference between a BP-12 and a Type 621 is that the missile for the Type 621 is unlike the B-611 where the weapon is exposed; the Type 621 is enclosed in a container that also acts as a transporter / erector.
The type 631 is a further development of the Type 621; its firepower is doubled when two containers / transporters / erectors are incorporated, a design feature rooted from the B-611M. It is rumored that the Type 631 has a range greater than 400 km, thus it cannot be marketed internationally. However, such a claim has yet to be confirmed by official sources from western or Chinese governments.
A model of the BP-12A was shown at the eighth Zhuhai Airshow, externally the system appears very similar to the Type 631 described in the brochure, but the maximum range of the BP-12A is just below 300 km to meet export restrictions of the international arms trade regulations. Nonetheless, the most important upgrade is that the fire control interface of the BP-12A is identical to the SY-400 MLRS, thus reducing the cost. Like the SY400, the storage life of the BP-12A in its container is twelve years, it only needs to be tested once a year for an annual periodical check, which is done without opening the container.
The M20 tactical ballistic missile (TBM) was first revealed in 2011 at a defense exhibition in the UAE, it is another member of the B-611 family. Very little information has been released about the M20, but many western observers suspect that it has absorbed technologies of the Russian SS-26, such as the addition of infrared guidance and the ability to change its course at the terminal stage of flight to make it more difficult to be intercepted. Many Chinese internet sources have claimed that China had obtained technologies of the SS-26 not by reverse engineering, but by hiring missile experts from Russia and the Ukraine after the USSR dissolved. Due to the M20 TBM being marketed by the Chinese on the world arms market, its maximum range is just below the 300 km limit. At the ninth Zhuhai Airshow held in November 2012, the developer revealed that the M20 had incorporated a terminal maneuver capability, thus making it more difficult to intercept.
- "Chinese ballistic missile exported to Turkey". AirForceWorld.com. Retrieved 5 Oct 2011.
- "Accuracy of BP-12 series (in Chinese)"
- "Defence International December 2010 (in Chinese)"
- BP-12A storage life
- M20Ttactical Ballistic Missile
- M20 TBM
- M20 Missile Weapon System
- Lennox, Duncan (18 December 2006). "China unveils B-611 short-range ballistic missile". Jane's. Archived from the original on 26 Feb 2008.