China reveals HQ-19 anti-ballistic missile system

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In an unprecedented move, China revealed its secretive HQ-19 anti-ballistic missile system  (ABM) in footage aired on China Central Television (CCTV).

HQ-19 as seen on Chinese CCTV
HQ-19 as seen on Chinese CCTV

The HQ-19 is a vastly upgraded version of the HQ-9 to counter ballistic missile and satellites on the lower end of low earth orbits. It is the Chinese equivalent of the US THAAD. The HQ-19 is armed with a dual purpose exosphere kinetic kill vehicle (kkv), which can be used against ballistic missile warheads or satellites. Its first flight occurred in 2003, and since then the missile has conducted several other tests, including one on November 1, 2015.

This is the first time Beijing has acknowledged its secretive program.

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