China is transferring additional ammunition for long-range HQ-22 anti-aircraft missile systems to Fujian province, located on the coast of the Taiwan Strait.
The HQ-22 is a new China’s air defense missile system. It was first revealed in 2014 in a downgraded form and was known as the FK-3. The FK-3 was mainly aimed at export customers. The HQ-22 can be seen as an improved and more mature version of the FK-3. It was first publicly revealed in 2016. By 2019 the HQ-22 was already in operational service. So far it is one of the most capable China’s air defense missile systems. It replaces in service the ageing HQ-2 air defense systems.
The HQ-22 resembles a HQ-9 air defense missile system, that was adopted back in the late 1990s. There is also a HQ-16 that entered service in 2011. Missiles of all of these systems are stored in containers. However all of these systems were developed by different companies and have different specifications. Also the HQ-9 and HQ-16 launch their missiles vertically, while the HQ-22 launches its missiles at an angle.
The HQ-22 air defense system can engage aircraft, helicopters, UAVs, ballistic and cruise missiles.
The HQ-22 uses new missiles that have a range of up to 170 km and can reach targets at an altitude of up to 27 km. The HQ-22 is sometimes referred as indigenous equivalent of the Russian S-400. It is actually not, as the Russian S-400 is a more capable system, that can reach targets at a range of up to 400 km and at an altitude of up to 56 km.
Missiles of the HQ-22 use semi-active radar guidance.
The launcher is based on a Hanyang special chassis with 8×8 configuration. Judging from the chassis this missile system is mainly designed for traveling on hard surface roads.
A typical battery of HQ-22 includes 3 launcher vehicles. A battery can engage 6 air targets simultaneously.