The DF-25 is a medium-range, road mobile, solid propellant ballistic missile. It is a new tactical system to be deployed by the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Initial reports suggested that the DF-25 system consisted of the first two stages of the DF-31 (CSS-9), but this cannot be confirmed.
Little information is available on the DF-25. It is believed that the system has a range of 3,200 or 4,000 km. Some have suggested that there may be two versions of the DF-25. One version could carry a single RV with a 1 to 3 MT nuclear warhead, or unitary HE, EMP, FAE, and submunitions. A second version could carry three re-entry vehicles with nuclear warhead yields of 20, 90, or 150 kT.
The DF-15 likely uses active radar and utilizes Over-The-Horizon Radar (OTHR) to achieve an accuracy of 10 m CEP. There are reports of the DF-25 flying a depressed trajectory and having the ability to maneuver in mid-course. The second version would likely have the capability to deploy decoys.
The DF-25 was originally planned to enter service in 2000. However, reports in 1996 indicate that the development was halted. It is believed it underwent a temporary delay due to problems with producing the solid propellant motors or so the PRC could focus on upgrading the DF-21 (CSS-5) missile systems. Recent reports indicate that the program was restarted and is expected to enter service in 2010. It is unclear if the missile ever became operational.
The PRC may have offered the DF-25 to Saudi Arabia to replace their DF-3 (CSS-2) missiles, but this cannot be confirmed. 1
- Lennox, Duncan. “DF-25.” Jane’s Strategic Weapon Systems (Offensive Weapons). August 28, 2012. (accessed September 12, 2012). ↩