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Chinese Nuclear Command, Control, and Communications

  • Published
  • China Aerospace Studies Institute

     The People’s Liberation Army Rocket Force (PLARF) and China’s Nuclear Deterrence Capabilities Have Grown Considerably in the Past 15 Years.
     Originally, the PLARF was constructed as purely a delivery force for China’s nuclear weapons. However, that role has expanded dramatically in recent decades to include conventional missile launch and nuclear co-mingling. The PLARF has also increased in size, with the number of launch brigades increasing from 22 to 41 since 2005. In 2021, China began construction of at least three large ICBM silo fields, which will increase the number of silos under the PLARF’s command. Further, the PLA has diversified its delivery systems for nuclear deterrence. These systems now include mobile launch options, silo-based missiles, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, and possibly air-launched nuclear ballistic missiles.

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