China's 294 megatons of thermonuclear deterrence

Discussion in 'China' started by Martian, May 6, 2011.

  1. Martian

    Martian Respected Member Senior Member

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    Rankings of world thermonuclear powers by megatons of firepower:

    1. Russia - 1,273 megatons

    2. United States - 570 megatons

    3. China - 294 megatons (China has over half the nuclear firepower of the United States)

    4. France - 55 megatons

    5. Britain - 16 megatons

    References:

    Russia: http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_russia.html
    United States: http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_usa.html
    China: http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_china.html
    France: http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_france.html
    Britain: http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_uk.html

    ----------

    [​IMG]
    China's "possible warhead assembly and production facilities" (source: NTI)

    http://www.nti.org/db/disarmament/country_china.html

    People's Republic of China (PRC)
    NPT Nuclear Weapon State


    1. Arsenal Size:

    Most opaque of the nuclear weapons state; limited open source information.
    Operational strategic warheads: ~176 (Warheads in stockpile: 240)[1]

    2. Key Delivery Systems:[2,3,4,5]

    * Land-based missiles: Approximately 120.(ICBM: DF-4, DF-5A DF-31, DF-31A; MRBM: DF-3A, DF-21)
    * Aircraft: 20 (Hong-6)
    * SLBM: 1 Xia-class sub carrying12 JL-1s, never fully deployed; 2 Jin-class subs deployed, 1 under development can each carry 12 JL-2; however the JL-2s have not yet been deployed
    * Cruise missiles: DH-10 (nuclear capable) 50-250 deployed
    * No credible evidence to confirm that non-strategic weapons still remain in operational force

    3. Estimated Destructive Power: 294[6]

    4. Military Fissile Material Stockpile: (estimates)

    Plutonium: 4 mt (+/- 20 %)[7]
    HEU: 20 mt [8]

    5. Disarmament and Commitments to Reduce Arsenal Size:

    Legal obligation to pursue global disarmament under Article VI of the NPT[9]

    Future Commitments:

    In support of verifiable FMCT negotiation. The treaty should not cover existing stockpiles[10]

    6. Nuclear Weapons Policies

    1. Nuclear testing:

    * Observed nuclear testing moratorium since July 1996.[12]
    * Signed but not ratified CTBT[13]

    2. Use of nuclear weapons:

    * Adopted no-first use policy[14,15]


    * Negative Security Assurances to NWFZ treaty members:

    Committed not to use nuclear weapons against members of:
    Tlatelolco, Rarotonga, and Pelindaba. Has not signed Bangkok, but reiterates its support.[16]


    * Acknowledged the commitments of the NWS to negative security assurances in UN Security Council Resolution 984 (1995).[17]
    * Expressed its support for legally binding unconditional negative security assurances.[18]

    Sources:
    [1] Robert S. Norris and Hans M. Kristensen, "Chinese Nuclear Forces, 2008," Nuclear Notebook, Natural Resources Defense Council, Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, July/August 2008, pp 42-45, http://thebulletin.metapress.com.
    [2] Robert S. Norris and Hans M. Kristensen, "Chinese Nuclear Forces, 2008," Nuclear Notebook, Natural Resources Defense Council, Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, July/August 2008, pp 42-45, http://thebulletin.metapress.com.
    [3] Ballistic and Cruise Missile Threat, National Air Space Intelligence Center, April 2009, www.fas.org.
    [4] Military Power of the People's Republic of China 2008, US Department of Defense, www.defense.gov.
    [5] Chinese Nuclear Forces, Strategic Security Blog, Federation of American Scientists, www.fas.org.
    [6] Eliminating Nuclear Threats, ICNND Report, www.icnnd.org.
    [7] International Panel on Fissile Materials, Global Fissile Material Report 2009, www.fissilematerials.org.
    [8] International Panel on Fissile Materials, Global Fissile Material Report 2009, www.fissilematerials.org.
    [9] Inventory of International Nonproliferation Organizations & Regimes, www.nti.org.
    [10] Statement by Ambassador Jingye Cheng to the Conference on Disarmament, Geneva, 17 May 2006, www.reachingcriticalwill.org.
    [11] Military Power of the People's Republic of China 2008, US Department of Defense, www.defense.gov.
    [12] CTBTO website, Nuclear Testing page, www.ctbto.org.
    [13] Inventory of International Nonproliferation Organizations & Regimes, www.nti.org.
    [14] Working Paper Submitted by China to the 2010 NPT Review Conference, 6 May 2010, www.reachingcriticalwill.org.
    [15] Statement by the Chinese Delegation on the Issue of Security Assurances at the Third Session of the Preparatory committee for the 2010 NPT Review Conference, 7 May 2009, www.reachingcriticalwill.org.
    [16] NTI Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Tutorial Protocol Chart, www.nti.org.
    [17] NTI Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Tutorial, Chapter 3, Security Assurances, www.nti.org.
    [18] Working Paper Submitted by China to the 2010 NPT Review Conference, 6 May 2010, www.reachingcriticalwill.org.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
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  3. utubekhiladi

    utubekhiladi The Preacher Elite Member

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    and how many india have?
     
  4. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Interesting NTI doesn't say megatonnes on its China citation but does for all the others. Only 294, as in warheads.
     
  5. Martian

    Martian Respected Member Senior Member

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    Rankings of world nuclear (thermonuclear/hydrogen P-5 and atomic/fission) powers

    India has 0.8 to 1 megaton.

    Rankings of world nuclear (thermonuclear/hydrogen P-5 and atomic/fission) powers

    [​IMG]
    Stunning, Frightening, Explosive and Destructive Power: Detonation of an 11-megaton Thermonuclear Bomb, March 26, 1954
    Operation Castle, ROMEO Event
    Bikini Atoll, Republic of the Marshall Islands

    Rankings of world P-5 (i.e. Five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council) thermonuclear powers by megatons of firepower:

    1. Russia - 1,273 megatons

    2. United States - 570 megatons

    3. China - 294 megatons (China has over half the nuclear firepower of the United States)

    4. France - 55 megatons

    5. Britain - 16 megatons

    Humorous fact: A single Chinese DF-3A/CSS-2 IRBM or DF-4/CSS-3 ICBM with a 3.3 megaton warhead is equivalent to the destructive firepower in the entire Israeli nuclear arsenal. In general, a thermonuclear warhead is roughly 100 times more powerful than an equivalent atomic warhead.

    References:

    Russia: NTI: Russia - Nuclear Disarmament
    United States: NTI: United States - Nuclear Disarmament
    China: NTI: China - Nuclear Disarmament
    France: NTI: France - Nuclear Disarmament
    Britain: NTI: United Kingdom - Nuclear Disarmament

    ----------

    Rankings of atomic/fission bomb powers:

    6. Israel: 1500-4000 kt (or 1.5 to 4 megatons)

    7. India: 800 Kt ~ 1000 Kt. (or 0.8 to 1 megaton)

    8. Pakistan: 600 kt - 1000 kt (or 0.6 to 1 megaton)

    [note: 1,000 kilotons equal only 1 megaton]

    References:

    Israel: NTI: Israel - Nuclear Disarmament
    India: NTI: India - Nuclear Disarmament
    Pakistan: NTI: Pakistan - Nuclear Disarmament
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  6. Martian

    Martian Respected Member Senior Member

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    1967: THE FIRST CHINESE HYDROGEN BOMB exploded with 3.3 megatons of destructive power

    "On June 17 1967, China revealed its true military power.

    At 00:19, a Chinese H-6 bomber dropped the first Chinese hydrogen bomb. It exploded with a force of 3.3 megatons. It marked the date when China entered the thermonuclear era."

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 10, 2015
  7. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    it says China has 176 warheads, so this would make each warhead roughly 2 Megatons?? First time I heard this??

    Operational strategic warheads: ~176
     
  8. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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  9. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Humorous fact... DF-3A is retired for DF-21 with a single 500kT warhead. Chinese megatonnes are shrinking?
     
  10. badguy2000

    badguy2000 Respected Member Senior Member

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    JL2 sub-lanuching ICBM succeeded in tests on December,26th,2010
     
  11. AOE

    AOE Regular Member

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    I'm not phased about whether China has half the nuclear capability of the US. The Americans have participated in disarmament programs and strategies, so have the Russians; more so than the Chinese have.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  12. Martian

    Martian Respected Member Senior Member

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    No nuclear limit: China

    [​IMG]
    (Range of China's defensive thermonuclear missiles)

    http://www.theage.com.au/world/no-nuclear-...0227-1ba0l.html

    "No nuclear limit: China
    Philip Dorling
    February 28, 2011

    HIGH-RANKING Chinese officials have declared that there can be no limit to the expansion of Beijing's nuclear arsenal, amid growing regional fears that it will eventually equal that of the United States, with profound consequences for the strategic balance in Asia.

    Records of secret defence consultations between the US and China reveal that US diplomats have repeatedly failed to persuade the rising superpower to be more transparent about its nuclear forces and that Chinese officials privately admit that a desire for military advantage underpins continuing secrecy.

    According to US diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks and provided exclusively to The Age, the deputy chief of China's People's Liberation Army General Staff, Ma Xiaotian, told US Defence and State Department officials in June 2008 that the growth of China's nuclear forces was an ''imperative reality'' and there could be "no limit on technical progress''.

    Rejecting American calls for China to reveal the size of its nuclear capabilities, Lieutenant-General Ma bluntly declared: ''It is impossible for [China] to change its decades-old way of doing business to become transparent using the US model.''


    While claiming in a further July 2009 discussion that Beijing's nuclear posture has "always been defensive'' and that China would "never enter into a nuclear arms race", General Ma acknowledged that, "frankly speaking, there are areas of China's nuclear program that are not very transparent''.

    China's assistant foreign minister He Yafei similarly told US officials in June 2008 that there will be an ''inevitable and natural extension'' of Chinese military power and that China ''cannot accept others setting limits on our capabilities''.
    ...
    The International Institute for Strategic Studies estimates China has up to 90 intercontinental ballistic missiles (66 land-based and 24 submarine-launched) and more than 400 intermediate range missiles targeting Taiwan and Japan. The US intelligence community predicts that by the mid-2020s, China could double the number of warheads on missiles capable of threatening the US."
     
  13. lurker

    lurker Regular Member

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    Looks like China's looking forward to a new nuclear arms race. No clue why Beijing is so eager to see mushroom clouds over their cities:confused:.
     
  14. Param

    Param Senior Member Senior Member

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    I wish the there is more noise about Chinese nuclear capability and their growing arsenal. It would increase up the pressure on India to conduct nuclear tests and prove our thermonuclear capability.

    Btw can anybody here, say where India might conduct future thermonuclear tests if a decision is taken? If we decide to test a 5 or 6 100kt to 300kt weapons it cannot be in the Pokhran test range. Its too close to population and the overall yield would cause considerable seismic damage in the region. If we decide to test in the sea then we would have to announce the decision to the entire world unlike Pokhran1&2.
     
  15. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    USA has more ICBM/Warheads in 3 OHIO subs than China has in it's whole arsenal. Hardly any comparisions.
     
  16. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

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    China for now is no match for USA the only country that can give Uncle Sam a hard time is Russia.
     
  17. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    USA,Russia,France,Great Britain are the only members of the P5 that have an operational nuclear SLBM.
     
  18. tony4562

    tony4562 Tihar Jail Banned

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    Britain's nuke arsenal is entirely gifted by the US, from missiles to subs to testing. No nuk proliferation is more blatant than this, yet the media never utters a word on it. Why the double standard?
     
  19. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    you are right ,and even now many NATO nations are funded by USA especially during this economic collapse in Europe.
     
  20. Martian

    Martian Respected Member Senior Member

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    Has China "crossed the multiple-warhead Rubicon"?

    [​IMG]
    The old projections may have to be revised in the face of new information. Well-known analyst Richard Fisher, Jr. states: "While a worst-case estimate, there is good reason to consider that China's warhead numbers could exceed 500 by 2020."

    [​IMG]
    DF-31As camouflaged

    FISHER: China and START - Washington Times

    "FISHER: China and START
    Missile buildup may surpass U.S., Russia as they denuclearize
    By Richard D. Fisher Jr. - The Washington Times 5:56 p.m., Wednesday, September 15, 2010

    Might China someday have more nuclear warheads than the United States? Than Russia? Inconceivable as it may sound, this could come to pass, because China may just be starting a period of double- or triple-digit annual growth in its warhead numbers as the Obama administration sets its sights on further U.S. warhead reductions, with little hope that China will join a regime of negotiated nuclear stability. But even if it did, would nuclear "parity" with China be in America's interest?

    The new START Treaty signed in May commits the United States and Russia to a "parity" that reduces deployed nuclear warheads from 2,200 to 1,550 and reduces to 700 the number of deployed nuclear delivery vehicles. However, President Obama has made clear his intention to seek further reductions; late 2009 leaks to the press suggested further goals of 1,000 warheads or even fewer.

    Since it started deploying intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in the 1980s, China has refused to join in nuclear weapons negotiations. This did not matter as long as China deployed a small number, about 20 liquid-fueled 13,000-kilometer-range DF-5s with single warheads, until early this decade. Furthermore, China had lulled many analysts by regularly suggesting that it adheres to a doctrine of "minimum deterrence" that abjures U.S.- or Russian-level warhead numbers. But China has also rejected U.S. and Soviet levels of nuclear "transparency" as part of its deterrence calculus, with the result that nobody knows its nuclear force goals.

    China began modernizing its nuclear missile forces by mid-decade, replacing early DF-5s with a similar number of improved DF-5A missiles based in stationary silos and deploying the new 7,000-to-8,000-kilometer-range, solid-fueled and mobile DF-31 and the larger 11,200-plus-kilometer-range DF-31A. In its latest report to the Congress on China's military released on Aug. 16, the Pentagon says there are less than 10 DF-31 and "10-15" DF-31A ICBMs, up to five more than reported in the previous year's report, covering 2008. However, in the 2010 issue of "Military Balance," Britain's International Institute of Strategic Studies notes there is one brigade of 12 DF-31s and two brigades or 24 DF-31A ICBMs, indicating a possible increase of one new brigade from 2008 to 2009.

    In addition, China may be close to fielding two more long-range nuclear missiles. First is the new 7,200-plus-kilometer-range JL-2 submarine-launched ballistic missile. Though reported to be experiencing developmental challenges, when completed, 12 each will go on the new Type 094 nuclear ballistic missile submarine, which the Pentagon estimates will number at least five, for a potential total of 60 missiles. Then there is a new yet-unidentified larger ground-mobile ICBM which has been revealed in Chinese Internet-source images since 2007, but which the Pentagon did not publicly acknowledge until its latest China report. The distinguishing feature of the "DF-XX" is its use of a large 16-wheel Russian-style transporter-erector-launcher (TEL), likely derived from Russian-Belarus technology imported in the late 1990s.

    But here is where the real danger begins: The Pentagon also notes this new ICBM is "possibly capable of carrying multiple independently targeted re-entry vehicles (MIRV)." Starting in 2002, the Pentagon's China report noted the People's Liberation Army's (PLA) interest in developing multiple warheads, with more explicit language being used in the 2009 and 2010 reports. Might some PLA ICBMs already have multiple warheads? This analyst has been told by Asian military sources that the DF-31A already carries three warheads and that one deployed DF-5B carries five or six warheads. These sources speculate the new "DF-XX" may carry a similar number of warheads.

    While it is not possible to confirm these disclosures from open sources, they point to an alarming possibility: China has crossed the multiple-warhead Rubicon and, with the possibility that it can build one brigade of DF-31A and DF-XX ICBMs a year, could be capable of annual double- or triple-digit increases in its deployed nuclear warheads. Chinese sources also suggest interest in developing longer-range versions of the JL-2, which could also be MIRV-capable. While a worst-case estimate, there is good reason to consider that China's warhead numbers could exceed 500 by 2020.

    In addition, China may also be on its way to fielding a national missile-defense system by the 2020s. Its recent, successful Jan. 11 missile warhead interception test marks the culmination of China's second anti-ballistic missile (ABM) program; the first was ordered started by Mao Zedong in 1963 and was pursued until 1980. This stands in contrast with years of howling complaints by Chinese diplomats against American missile-defense programs and their fervent campaigning to ban outer-space weapons. Was this merely deception designed to limit American defensive programs while China gathered the capacity to pursue its own ABM and space-warfare programs?

    These potential trends would logically cause one to ask: Why not talk to the Chinese about their nuclear strategic plans? Indeed, the administration's April Nuclear Posture Review calls for "strategic assurance dialogues" with China. However, not only has China traditionally rejected any "negotiations" regarding its nuclear forces, it won't even send its main nuclear missile forces commander on a courtesy visit to the United States. Normal military-to-military dialogue is regularly held hostage to Washington ending arms sales to democratic Taiwan.

    But there is a deeper basic conflict: China wants to displace U.S. strategic leadership in Asia and is building military forces capable of defending its global interests, even if that means challenging the United States well beyond Asia. So until China achieves its desired level of global power, which may not include concepts of "parity," China may have no interest in "negotiations" that limit or even inform others about its nuclear weapons plans.

    But even if the United States and China could agree on nuclear parity, that may come at the cost of America's Asian alliances. A larger and defended Chinese nuclear arsenal could greatly undermine the U.S. ability to extend its nuclear deterrent, accelerating the process of decoupling the United States from key allies like Japan, South Korea and Australia. America's ability to deter China will decline further when the administration implements its Nuclear Posture Review decision to retire U.S. nuclear-armed TLAM-N cruise missiles carried by secure U.S. submarines, replacing them with tactical nuclear bombs carried by more vulnerable U.S. jet fighters. And then one must consider Russia and its increasing political-military cooperation with China. Might Russia someday "tilt" its nuclear forces with China's to dissuade the United States from defending a future vital interest?

    Countries like Taiwan, South Korea, Japan and India are today facing increased Chinese military pressures. They and the United States are also increasingly pressed to fund conventional military forces needed to deter China. It is indeed legitimate to ask if the current START Treaty gives the United States the ability to deter both Russia and a China just starting its strategic nuclear buildup. Furthermore, might START and intended follow-on agreements bring Asia closer to an era of nuclear proliferation and unforeseen instability?

    Richard D. Fisher Jr. is a senior fellow with the International Assessment and Strategy Center and author of "China's Military Modernization, Building for Regional and Global Reach" (Praeger, 2008)."
     
  21. Param

    Param Senior Member Senior Member

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    Do you mean the BBC or CNN and their likes? That's the objective media of the "free world".How dare you use words like proliferation against Britain and America.That is only reserved for third world countries.
     

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