What is Fire Dragon 480?

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What is Fire Dragon 480? Blog Image


A new study by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has claimed that China’s tactical ballistic missile, the Fire Dragon 480, possesses the capability to sink a US Ticonderoga-class cruiser patrolling the Red Sea.

About Fire Dragon 480

  • It is a Chinese long-range rocketproduced by China’s Norinco Group for export purposes.
  • It is a 750-mm tactical ballistic missile that is equipped with precision-guidance sensors, which enable it to strike moving targets with a high degree of accuracy.
  • The missile can be launched from a high-speed, wheeled platform capable of withstanding harsh environments.
  • Its warhead surpasses the 400 kg mark, significantly outweighing that of a conventional anti-ship missile.
  • Its impact velocity exceeds 500 metres (1,640 feet) per second, which would ensure that a 10,000-tonne cruiser would be destroyed after being hit by just two of these missiles.
  • While it is generally believed that the Fire Dragon 480 has a range limit of 290km (180 miles), Chinese researchers have said that its practical range could exceed 500km. 
  • It was adopted by the Chinese PLA in 2019.
  • The only publicly disclosed export deal for the weapon was a $245 million agreement with the United Arab Emirates.

Q1: What are Ballistic Missiles?

A ballistic missile is a rocket-propelled, self-guided strategic-weapons system that follows a ballistic trajectory to deliver a payload from its launch site to a predetermined target. They are powered initially by a rocket or series of rockets in stages, but then follow an unpowered trajectory that arches upwards before descending to reach its intended target. They can carry conventional high explosives as well as chemical, biological, or nuclear munitions.

Source: Red Sea: China ‘Sinks’ US Navy Warship In Simulation Drills Using Its Fire Dragon Missile; Expert Analyzes