China has sold a powerful missile-tracking system to Pakistan that could expedite the Pakistani military’s development of multi-warhead missiles, the South China Morning Post reported on Thursday.
The Chinese Academy of Sciences said in a statement that China was the first country to export such equipment to Pakistan, and Zheng Mengwei, a researcher with the CAS Institute of Optics and Electronics in the city of Chengdu in Sichuan province, confirmed the news of the deal.
The Chinese-made device uses four telescope units in the missile’s optical system instead of the usual two, Zheng told the daily.
These high-performance telescopes are equipped with a laser ranger, a high-speed camera, an infrared detector and a centralised computer system. They can automatically capture and follow moving targets. Each telescope can detect anything within several hundred kilometres and together they provide visual information of unprecedented detail and accuracy, the newspaper reported. They can help missile developers improve designs and engine performance. “We simply gave them a pair of eyes,” Zheng said. “They can use them to look at whatever they want to see, even the Moon.”
The news report came on a day India successfully test-fired BrahMos, the world’s fastest supersonic missile. While India’s single-warhead missiles are bigger and cover longer distances, Pakistan has worked on developing missiles that can carry multiple nuclear warheads that can be fired at different targets, the South China Morning Post reported. In January 2017, Pakistan successfully test-fired the nuclear-capable Ababeel missile. If perfected, it can overwhelm a missile defence system and wipe out an enemy country’s nuclear arsenal in one attack.