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Japan plans to develop new long-range surface-to-surface missile for warships.

| 2021

According to information published by the Japanese Newspaper "The Mainichi" on June 5, 2021, Japan has planned to develop a new long-range surface-to-surface missile that could be launched from warships or fighter aircraft.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Type 12 surface-to-surface missile. (Picture source Wikipedia)

The development of the new surface-to-surface missile could start in 2022. Japan would like to enhance standoff weapons capabilities with the capacity to launch missiles from outside an enemy's threat range.

In the defense budget 2021, Japan Government has allocated approx. $306 million for the development of a long-range standoff missile based on Type 12 Surface-to-Ship Missile. The Japanese Government expects to conduct the first operational trials of the new long-range missile for warships in about five years and seven years and could enter into service in 2026 or later.

Standoff weapons are missiles or bombs which may be launched from a distance sufficient to allow attacking personnel to evade defensive fire from the target area. Typically, they are used against land- and sea-based targets in an offensive operation. The name is derived from their ability to engage the target while standing off outside the range at which the defenders are likely to engage the attacker.

Type 12 is a truck-mounted anti-ship missile developed by Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in 2012. It features INS (Inertial Navigation System) with mid-course GPS guidance and better precision due to enhanced Terrain Contour Matching and target discrimination capabilities.

The missile is networked, where initial and mid-course targeting can be provided by other platforms, and also boasts shorter reload times, reduced lifecycle costs, and has a maximum firing range of 124 mi (200 km). The improved version can be fired at a maximum range of 400 km.

The ship-launched derivative of Type 12, designated as Type 17 (SSM-2) missile has been put into service and it is to start deploying from Maya-class destroyer. The range has doubled to 400 kilometers and is also planning to re-apply for the improved version of the surface-to-ship system and the air-launched variant for the P-1 patrol aircraft.

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