Laos displays Chinese-made Yitian, or Tianlong 6, air defense missile system

The Lao People's Army has begun its extensive modernization through the purchase of a new generation of weapons and equipment originating from many different countries, namely Chinese-made Yitian (Tianlong 6) air defense systems.

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Yitian (Tianlong 6) SHORAD missile defense system (picture source: Army Recognition)

In addition to Russian-made weapons such as the Yak-130 trainer and the T-72B "White Eagle" main battle tank, the proportion of Chinese weapons in the Lao Army is also increasing. Since the Lao special forces soldiers marched with carbine QBZ-97B, this changing trend has also been mentioned, followed by "surprise" to reveal CS/SH1 self-propelled self-propelled guns. And most surprisingly, recently in the parade preparation for the 70th day of the army's establishment, the Yitian low-range air defense missile system (Tianlong 6) appeared.

The Yitian anti-aircraft missile complex consists of a combat module mounted on a 6x6 WZ-551 armored vehicle chassis built by NORINCO (China). The system is equipped with 8 Tianlong 6 short-range surface-to-air missiles, which is a modified version of the air-to-air missile TY-90 (Sky Swallow-90) with an effective range of 300-6,000m, high combat operation 4,000 m. The shooting for the TY-90 is a fairly passive, multi-phase array radar placed on the top of the operational module, the armored WZ-551 chassis still retaining a heavy 12.7 mm machine gun for self-defense. The Chinese-made Yitian low-range anti-aircraft missile systems are rated to be more technically superior to the existing Strela-10 in the military service in both range and accuracy of radar. The Lao People's Army will however not eliminate the Strela-10 used in parallel with Yitian. Both systems will be the two vehicles that play the role of protecting the lineup of armored units.


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