|YJ-18 supersonic anti-ship missile|
The YingJi-18 (YJ-18 or Eagle/Hawk-18) is a vertically-launched, long-range, supersonic, sea-skimming anti-ship missile designed to kill US Navy's Aegis-equipped destroyers or its equivalents provided to Japan, South Korea or European Navies.
The YJ-18 is deployment for the newest People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Type 052D class destroyers with vertical launch system (VLS) to launch such missiles.
And subsequently may be incorporated into existing destroyers and submarines as part of a modernization effort.
Its guidance system consists of an advanced inertial navigation, may backed by the Beidou navigation system, plus an active radar seeker in the terminal phase.
Besides, a built-in data link allows the carrier ship to update the target's location. The Aegis-killer missile existence was first reported in 2013 with an entry into service expected by 2014 or later.
The YJ-18 missile is equipped with a 300 kg high explosive (HE) warhead capable of taking out a destroyer-sized ship.
The HE warhead can be replaced by an anti-radiation/electromagnetic pulse warhead that is said can take down up to 60 percent of the enemy ship's electronic systems at a range of 50 meters after detonating.
After the vertical launch the missile's turbojet engine is capable of flying at a cruise speed of Mach 0.8 for about 180 kilometers after that point the warhead section separates and a solid rocket engine ignites allowing at a top speed of Mach 2.5-3 for about 40 kilometers.
The missile can maneuver at 10G acceleration to avoid enemy interception by air-to-air or surface-air missiles. The missile’s high speed and terminal movement make it very difficult to intercept.
Qianzhan.com quotes foreign media’s reports as saying Types 093G and 095 attack nuclear submarines can also be armed with such missiles.
Recent photo of China’s three new 093Gs shows that they all have VLS.
The missile design and performance is very similar to Russia's 3M54E which may have been the template for the YJ-18.
DARPA’s Vision of Future War? Swarms of Missiles and Drones
DARPA wants an army of drones to overwhelm the enemy
DARPA Close Air Support Success