Submarine-launched Harpoon missiles will soon become operational on Taiwan’s Hai Lung-class submarines since the United States began delivery of the anti-ship cruise missiles to Taiwan this year, Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense (MND) said Tuesday in a report.
Namely, the MND submitted a report on bilateral cooperation between Taiwan and the U.S. to the Legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee, detailing on the programme.
Taiwan already has air and surface-launched Harpoon missiles, nevertheless with the acquisition of the said missiles the country aims to strengthen its submarine warfare capabilities.
Under an arrangement between the two governments, said to be worth circa USD 195.5 million, Taiwan will receive 32 UGM-84L sub-launched Harpoon Block II missiles along with two UTM-84L exercise missiles and two weapon control systems.
UGM-84L sub-launched Harpoon Block II missile can engage targets within a range of about 125 kilometers, enough for Taiwan to reach the Chinese coast, as claimed by the local media.
Harpoon Block II, a 500-pound blast warhead, uses GPS-aided inertial navigation to hit a designated target.
It delivers lethal firepower against a wide variety of land-based targets and ships in port. For conventional anti-ship missions, such as open ocean or near-land, the GPS/INS improves midcourse guidance to the target area. The accurate navigation solution allows easy discrimination of target ships from other objects.
Naval Today Staff, December 30, 2013; Image: Wikimedia