Further Speculation about China’s Mysterious Missile Carried by J-16

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In my post yesterday titled “Further Information of China’s New PL-15 Long-Range Air-to-air Missile”, the new missile carried by J-16 appeared in Internet photos is regarded as China’s homegrown long-range air-to-air missile (LRAAM) according to Singapore’s zaobao.com and Chinese-military-aviation.blogspot.hk. Southfront.org that provides the above four photos of J-16 carrying the missile, however, says in its report “China’s J-16 Fighter Jet & Its New Mysterious Missile (Photos)” that “Combat Aircraft” military magazine has three main versions of speculation about the mysterious missile. Full text of southfront.org’s report is given below:

Photos, showing the Shenyang J-16 fighter jet of the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF), carrying a huge missile under its wing, at an unknown location were published online on Monday. According to initial analysis, the length of the missile is almost six meters.

According to the Combat Aircraft military magazine, the missile in the photos, apparently, is a new Chinese air-launched missile.

The magazine has three main versions about the mysterious missile.

Firstly, it could be “an ultra-long-range weapon intended to defeat high-value assets such as E-3 AWACS surveillance aircraft or RC-135 intelligence-gatherers.” However, Combat Aircraft also noted that if it is such a kind of missile, “it is somewhat surprising” to see that the J-16, which has “a primary air-to-ground role,” carrying it.

Secondly, the magazine presumed that the photos could show an “anti-satellite weapon, equivalent to the ASAT that was tested from the US Air Force F-15A Eagle in the early 1980s.” As the author of the article noted, anti-satellite weapons have been actively being tested by China for some years now, however, “these have not as yet been intended for launch by fighters.”

Another assumption is that the “new missile is not an AAM at all, but an anti-radar missile” – a fully indigenous follow-on to the YJ-91, a Chinese version of the Soviet Kh-31.

Source: southfront.org “China’s J-16 Fighter Jet & Its New Mysterious Missile (Photos)”