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HQ-7

Short-range air defense missile system

HQ-7

The HQ-7 is a Chinese reverse-engineered copy of the French Crotale air defense system

 
 
Country of origin China
Entered service 1988 (?)
Crew 3 men
Dimensions and weight
Weight ?
Length ?
Width ?
Height ?
Missile
Missile length 3 m
Missile diameter 0.55 m
Missile weight 84.5 kg
Warhead weight 15 kg
Warhead type HE-FRAG
Range of fire up to 12 km
Altitude of fire 5.5 km
Mobility
Engine petrol / diesel
Engine power ?
Maximum road speed ~ 80 km/h
Range ~ 600 km
Maneuverability
Gradient 60%
Side slope 30%
Vertical step ~ 0.5 m
Trench ~ 0.5 m
Fording ~ 0.8 m

 

   The HongQi 7 (HQ-7) short-range air defense missile system has been developed in China in the 1980s. It is a reverse engineered copy of the French Crotale.  Sometimes it is referred as Sino Crotale. In 1978-1979 China imported some of the Thomson-CSF Crotale systems for evaluation. These where both land-based and ship-based versions. Some French R-440 Sea Crotale systems were purchased and installed on the Chinese warships. Eventually China reverse engineered this system. First Chinese clone of the ground-based version was produced for testing in 1983. In 1986-1988 it was approved for production. The HQ-7 was also deployed by the Chinese air force and protected the air bases from air attacks. Since 1989 the HQ-7 was proposed for export customers as the FM-80.

   The HQ-7 is used for short-range air defense and also for point defense of important targets. It was deployed to protect military bases and ammunition depots. At some Chinese air force bases the HQ-7 is deployed in hardened positions. The HQ-7 was superior to the HQ-61 air defense missile system, that also appeared in the late 1980s.

   A TELAR vehicle is based on a 4x4 armored chassis. It is a cloned Thomson-Hotchkiss P4R chassis. It is powered by a petrol or diesel engine, driving an alternator, which powers electrical motors driving the wheels. It carries four missiles and is fitted with engagement radar. It also has an optical aiming system. The TELAR vehicle is operated by a crew of three. Armor of this vehicle provides protection against small arms fire and artillery shell splinters. There is also a towed version of the HQ-7, operated by the Chinese army. The towed version is less mobile and was mainly intended to defend point targets.

   A standard missile is 3 m long and weights 84.5 kg. It has a solid fuel rocket motor. It gives the missile a maximum speed of Mach 2.3 (750 m/s) and a range of 12 km. It can engage helicopters, aircraft, cruise missiles, air-to-ground missiles and anti-radiation missiles. Minimum range of fire is about 500-700 m. It can reach targets at an altitude of 5.5 km. The missile has a 15 kg High-Explosive Fragmentation (HE-FRAG) warhead with contact and proximity fuses.

   A battery of HQ-7 consists of one vehicle with acquisition radar and two or three TELAR vehicles. Also each battery is supported by a maintenance group with around 10 support vehicles.

   The acquisition radar is based on the same 4x4 chassis. It detects targets at a range of up to 18.4 km. Tracking range is 17 km. It can detect up to 30 targets and track up to 12 targets simultaneously.

 

Variants

 

   FM-80 (Feimeng 80), export version of the HQ-7. It was revealed in 1989;

   HHQ-7, a naval version of the HQ-7. It was introduced in the 1990s. It has a bank of 8 missiles. For over a decade it was the standard Chinese ship-based air defense system. Currently a more capable HQ-9 with a longer range is being fitted on newly-built Chinese warships;

   Shahab Tagheb, an Iranian short-range air defense missile system. It was revealed in 1999. It was developed with Chinese assistance and by transferring technology of the HQ-7;

   HQ-7A improved variant introduced in 1998. It has a maximum range of fire of 15 km. Detection range is 25 km and tracking range is 20 km. Also this missile has a maximum speed of 900 m/s in stead of 750 m/s;

   FM-90 (Feimeng 90), export version of the HQ-7A;

   HQ-7B latest variant, based on indigenous 6x6 armored chassis. It was first revealed somewhere in 2009. This air defense system is wisely used by the Chinese armed forces. It is more mobile due to its 6x6 configuration. This vehicle is more suited to follow motorized infantry, or mechanizes armored units. It is also being proposed for export customers as the FM-90.

 

 
HQ-7

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