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Datong - 409 Brigade
36°36'N 103°20'E

The Datong missile garrision, located in central China, is an ideal deployment site for the DF-3, as the site is much less vulnerable to air attack than the coastal deployment areas. From Datong, the DF-3 can strike targets in India and Russia. In 1997 the Air Force spotted "recent demolition activity" at Datong, probably indicating the facility is undergoing conversion in apparent preparation for deployment of China's most modern IRBM, the DF-21 [CSS-5 Mod 2].

The facility is headquarters for one of the three launch brigades, each with up to three launch battalions, subordinated to the Second Artillery Corps 80306 Unit, a Division headquartered in Xining, Qinghai province. The 80306 Unit is able to target sites in the former Soviet Union and India, and indications exist that the 80306 Unit may upgrade to the DF-21.

Datong is also the primary deployment base for the H-6 bomber aircraft. The airbase is the headquarters of the Beijing Military Region's 10th Air Army.

Datong is located approximately 2,200 km from Taiwan.

Photographic Evaluation Report

High resolution coverage is only available from declassified CORONA imagery, which was aquired on 28 July 1970. As of 01 May 2000 Russian 2-meter resolution KVR-1000 imagery coverage was not available via the SPIN-2 service on TerraServer. As of this date some 15 archival Space Imaging IKONOS 1-meter images of this general area were available on the CARTERRA™ Archive. Of these, one series was of limited value, having high thin overcast over much of the area of interest. Two sets of images probably include the DF-3 deployment area, and three images include the strategic bomber base.

Sources and Resources

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http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/china/facility/datong .htm
Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Friday, May 12, 2000 12:00:01 AM