|Role and Mobility||Medium- to Long-Range Surface to Air Defense; Road-Mobile|
|Interceptors and Range||
Tien-Kung I-III Missiles:
TK I: 70 km
TK II: 150 km
TK III: 200 km
-Chang Bai S-Band phased-array radar
-CS/MPG-25 X-Band target illuminator radar (x2)
-Semi-active radar homing seeker
-Change Bai S-Band phased-array radar
-X-Band active radar homing seeker
-Upgraded Chang Bai S-Band phased-array radar OR mobile Chang-Shan C-Band phased array radar
-Ku-Band active radar homing seeker
|Targets||Fighter Aircraft, Short-Range Tactical Ballistic Missiles, and Cruise Missiles|
|Designer/Producer||National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCIST)|
The Tien-Kung, also known as the Sky Bow, is a medium- to long-range surface-to-air missile (SAM) system operated by Taiwan. The system is composed of the surface-to-air missiles, the canisters, and the mobile fire control units. The fire control unit includes the phased array radar, communication relay, engagement control station, the launcher, and power plant equipment.[i]Development of the system first began in 1981 for its original variant, the Tien-Kung I, and was deployed in 1993 with a semi-active radar homing seeker for missile guidance, supported by two CS/MPG-25 target illuminator radars.
The next variant of the system, the Tien-Kung II, was deployed in 1998. The Tien-Kung II included a slightly enlarged modified version of the original, and also replaced the semi-active seeker with an active radar homing seeker for increased range and capability. It is otherwise similar to the Tien-Kung I, relying on the same launcher.
The most current variant is the Tien-Kung III which finished its operational test and evaluation period in 2011.[ii]The system also features a multiple target-tracking capability, Identification, Friend or Foe (IFF) capabilities, target identification and electronic counter-countermeasures (ECCM).[iii]It also has a higher effective range due to its solid propellants.
The Tien-Kung system provides Taiwan with a domestically produced and highly capable air defense. Each new variant has allowed for greater range of defense. The newest variant, the Tien-Kung III provides medium- to long-range coverage that better ensures Taiwan’s ability to intercept threats earlier in their trajectory when they pose a lower risk. The Tien-Kung III is also capable of providing defense against some ballistic missiles.
December 14-16, 2016: Taiwan conducts a three-day live-exercise to test its air defense capabilities, including the Tien-Kung III.[iv]
January 2016:The Tien-Kung III is exhibited at the Bahrain Air Show.[v]
2009:The Taiwan Military starts operation test and evaluation (OT&E) to assess the Tien-Kung III’s performance, effectiveness, and suitability parameters.[vi]
2001:Development of the Tien-Kung III begins.
1998: First deployment of the Tien-Kung II.
1993: First deployment of the Tien-Kung I.
1981:Development of the Tien-Kung I begins.[vii]