Type 03 Chū-SAM

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Type 03 Chu-SAM
launch vehicle
Type 03 Chu-SAM
Typesurface-to-air missile
Place of originJapan
Service history
In service2003 - Present
Used byJapan
Production history
DesignerMitsubishi Electric, Kato Works LTD.
ManufacturerMitsubishi Heavy Industries
Massabout 570kg
Length4.9 m
Diameterabout 0.32m
Warhead weight73 kg
proximity fuse

EngineMitsubishi rocket
track-via-missile, AESA radar

Type 03 Medium-Range Surface-to-Air Missile (03式中距離地対空誘導弾, maru-san-shiki-chu-kyori-chi-tai-kuu-yuudou-dan) or SAM-4 or Chu-SAM (中SAM, Chū-Samu) is a Japanese developed surface-to-air missile system currently in service with the Japan Army as JGSDF. The SAM's vehicle chassis is based on the Kato Works Ltd/Mitsubishi Heavy Industries NK series heavy crane truck. It uses a state-of-the-art active electronically scanned array radar. [1]


The Chu-SAM air defense system is based on 8×8 cross country unarmored trucks, including a command center, radar unit, launcher, and transloader, with each unit equipped with six missiles that travel at Mach 2.5. The system can track up to 100 targets simultaneously and target 12 at the same time, engaging fighter jets, helicopters, and cruise missiles.[2]


In 2014, the JGSDF began evaluation of the upgraded Chu-SAM Kai, which uses improved sensor and networking features for better range and targeting of more complex cruise and anti-surface missile threats. During the summer of 2015, 10 Chu-SAM Kai missiles were test fired at White Sands Missile Range in the United States and successfully intercepted various targets, including the GQM-163 Coyote supersonic target drone; White Sands hosted the launches because the location's large size and controlled airspace allowed for testing conditions unavailable in Japan. Operational tests of the Chu-SAM Kai are expected to take place, again at White Sands, in 2016.[2][3]

The Chu-SAM Kai missile also planned to be converted to the long-range ship-to-air missile with a separatable booster rocket.[4]


  • JGSDF Anti-aircraft Artillery (Advanced) Training Unit (高射教導隊, kousya-kyoudou-tai) since 2003
  • JGSDF Eastern Army (Japan) 2nd Anti-aircraft Artillery Group (第2高射特科群, dai2-kousya-tokka-gun) at Camp Matsudo in Matsudo, Chiba since 2007
  • JGSDF Central Army (Japan) 8th Anti-aircraft Artillery Group (第8高射特科群, dai8-kousya-tokka-gun) in Ono, Hyōgo since 2008


See also[edit]

Comparable SAMs:


External links[edit]