China Closer to Deploying Anti-Carrier Missile.
BEIJING – China is moving closer to deploying a ballistic missile designed to sink an aircraft carrier, the commander of the U.S. Pacific Command said in newspaper interview published Tuesday.
Known among defense analysts as a "carrier killer," the Dong Feng 21D missile would be a game-changer in the Asian security environment, where U.S. Navy aircraft carrier battle groups have ruled the waves since the end of World War II.
The DF 21D's uniqueness is in its ability to hit a powerfully defended moving target with pinpoint precision — a capability U.S. naval planners are scrambling to deal with.
The system's component parts have likely been designed and tested, but U.S. sources have not detected an over-water test to see how well it can target a moving ship, Willard said.
Years of tests are probably still needed before the missile can be fully deployed, he said. The system requires state-of-the-art guidance systems, and some experts believe it will take China a decade or so to field a reliable threat.