Does China wants to strike India with its electromagnetic railgun missiles? Should India be worried about rocket attacks being tested from the highest altitude in the remote area of Tibet? The electromagnetic railguns, a first of its kind, can launch missiles and inflict massive damage, claims the Chinese media.
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Chinese media said this would be the world’s first electromagnetic surface-to-surface rockets. When asked as to why they are being tested in remote Tibet, the spokesman said that they believe rockets launched from the “roof of the world” can hit the heartland of its rivals.
A missile launched by an electromagnetic weapon would have more resistance and efficiency than a regular rocket, while still being much cheaper than a rocket with its own impetus system, said Chinese experts.
An electromagnetic catapult “can give the rocket a very high initial speed on its launching stage,” Han Junli, the project’s lead scientist, told state-run Science and Technology Daily.
Han “has collected first-hand data from the 4,000- meter plus plateau and studied how to optimize the rockets for the high-altitude environment, where temperatures are extremely low in winter and the atmosphere is thin. Much lower air pressure there – which could be about half of that at sea level – means less air friction during flight, and possibly a longer range. However, thinner air also means less force that the tail fins can generate to control the rocket’s position during flight, greatly reducing its precision. An electromagnetic catapult launcher, which stabilizes the flight while increasing initial velocity, would make the rockets a much more powerful weapon, especially on the plateau.”
Both the countries share an uneasy border along Tibet and the Himalayas, over which they fought a brief war in 1962 in which China occupied disputed regions. While the area has been fairly quiet since Indian and Chinese military almost came to blows last year after Chinese army began extending a road in the contradicted border area of Doklam.
Long-range rockets would be an important asset in battling over the highest mountains in the world, which critically taxes ground troops and aircraft. But “with hundreds of kilometers of range, from where they would be able to strike the heartland of India,” said SCMP.
The way India, which has nuclear weapons, would respond to rocket attacks on its cities is another affair. China is already producing an electromagnetic catapult – just as the US has – to launch jets from aircraft carriers. But the electromagnetic rocket catapult, if successful, would turn railguns into battlefield artillery weapons capable of cheaply saturating a target with high-velocity rockets.