Hatf 8 “Ra’ad”

The Hatf 8 “Ra’ad” is an air-launched cruise missile developed by Pakistan. The missile began testing in August 2007 and has undergone several  additional tests since, including a reportedly successful  test January 2016.1

Hatf 8 “Ra’ad” at a Glance

Originated from: Pakistan
Possessed by: Pakistan
Class: Subsonic Cruise Missile
Basing: Air-launched
Length: 4.85 m
Diameter: 0.5 m
Warhead: HE, nuclear, conventional
Propulsion: Turbojet
Range: 350 km
Status: Unknown

hatf 8

Tests of the Ra’ad have been largely conducted from Pakistan’s Mirage III fighter jets, but there is potential for future systems such as the JF-17 fighter that could also host the Ra’ad. Estimates place the missile’s dimensions at approximately 4.85 m in length, .5 m in diameter.2 The Ra’ad has the given Pakistan a stand-off capability because it can deliver both nuclear and conventional payloads to a target from a 350 km range over and above the maximum range of the aircraft. Pakistani media reports the Ra’ad to be a “low-altitude, terrain hugging missile with high maneuverability” as well as “stealth capabilities [and] pinpoint accuracy.”3

Pictures of the Hatf 8 indicate a similar design concept to the MBDA Scalp EG/Storm Shadow (Black Shaheen)/Apache, and the Taurus KEPD 350. The most noticeable similarity lies in the rectangular cross section which differs greatly from the Haft 7 cylindrical design. The MBDA and Taurus cruise missiles also have pop-out wings mounted on the top of the fuselage, whereas the Haft 8 wings are mounted near the bottom of the fuselage.

    1. Agence French-Presse, “Military: Pakistan Test-Launches Homegrown Cruise Missile,” Defense News, January 19, 2016, http://www.defensenews.com/story/defense/2016/01/19/military-pakistan-test-launches-homegrown-cruise-missile/79032482/; “Hatf 8 (Ra’ad), in IHS Jane’s Weapons: Strategic 2015-2016, ed. James C. O’Halloran (United Kingdom: IHS, 2015), 173.
    2. “Hatf 8 (Ra’ad), in IHS Jane’s Weapons: Strategic 2015-2016, ed. James C. O’Halloran (United Kingdom: IHS, 2015), 173.
    3. Hans M. Kristensen & Robert S. Norris, Pakistani nuclear forces, 2015, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 71:6, 64.