September 6, 2008:
buying 60 Harpoon (AGM-84D) anti-ship missiles, for $1.5 million each. These
will be used on twelve P-3C maritime patrol aircraft. The 1,200 pound Harpoon
has a 487 pound warhead and a range of 220 kilometers. It approaches the target
low, at about 860 kilometers an
hour. GPS gets the missile to the
general vicinity of the target, then radar takes over to identify and hit the
target. The Harpoon has successful combat experience going back two decades.
Most Chinese warships (corvettes and frigates) are small enough to be destroyed
by one Harpoon.