Yun Feng

The Yun Feng is a surface-to-surface, supersonic cruise missile. It is one of the few Taiwanese strategic assets designed to reach targets deep in northern and central China.1

Yun Feng at a Glance

Originated from: Taiwan
Possessed by: Taiwan
Alternate name(s): Cloud Peak
Class: Supersonic land-attack cruise missile
Basing: Ground-launched
Payload: 225 kg, Semi-armor piercing High Explosive, Fragmentation
Propulsion: Ramjet engine with solid-fueled booster
Range: 1,200-2,000 km
Speed: 1,030 m/s
Status: In development
In service: N/A

Development

Reports of the Yun Feng missile first surfaced in December 2012, but the program had been underway for some time before then. Soon after the 1996 Taiwan Strait Crisis, Taiwan began development of the missile in secret, concealing Yun Feng flight tests within the Hsiung Feng III test program to avoid public scrutiny. The missile was developed by the National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST).2

The missile has been controversial among both pro-mainland and pro-Taiwan analysts. While the former critique the missile’s offensive nature, the latter assert that the missile is inappropriate given Taiwan’s defensive posture, China’s advanced air defense capabilities, and could negatively impact Taiwan’s relations with the United States.3

Specifications

Most specifications of the missile remain unknown. The standard Yun Feng is believed to have a range of 1,200 km, but an extended version also in development has a reported range of 2,000 km. The missile uses a ramjet engine which allows it to travel at supersonic speeds, reportedly reaching a maximum of 1,030 m/s.4

Service History

Several past reports indicated that the Yun Feng would enter service in 2014. Its current status, however, remains unclear.

    1. “Yunfeng,” in IHS Jane’s Weapons: Strategic 2015-2016, ed. James C. O’Halloran (United Kingdom: IHS, 2015), 208.
    2. “Taiwan: Missile,” Nuclear Threat Initiative, June 2015, http://www.nti.org/learn/countries/taiwan/delivery-systems/.
    3. J. Michael Cole, “To Terminate or Not? Taiwan’s ‘Cloud Peak’ Medium-Range Missile Program,” The News Lens, September 21, 2016, https://international.thenewslens.com/article/49674.
    4. IHS Jane’s Weapons: Strategic 2015-2016, 208.