|Type||Medium-range, active radar homing air-to-air BVR missile|
|Place of origin||People's Republic of China|
|Used by||People's Liberation Army Air Force|
Myanmar Air Force
|Mass||180 kilograms (400 lb)|
|Engine||Dual thrust solid fuel rocket|
|70–100 kilometres (43–62 mi)|
|Maximum speed||Mach 4+|
The PL-12 (Chinese: 霹雳-12; pinyin: Pī Lì-12; lit. 'Thunderbolt-12', NATO reporting name: CH-AA-7) is an active radar-guided beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile developed by the People's Republic of China. It is considered comparable to the US AIM-120 AMRAAM and the Russian R-77.
Development of the PL-12 (SD-10) began in 1997. The first public information of the Leihua Electronic Technology Research Institute's PL-12 – then called the SD-10 – emerged in 2001. Development was assisted by Vympel NPO and Agat of Russia. Liang Xiaogeng is believed to have been the chief designer. Four successful test firings were made in 2004. The missile entered People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) service in 2005.
The early batches of PL-12 missiles reportedly used the 9B-1348 radar seeker designed for the R-77 missile. The development process was assisted by Vympel NPO and Tactical Missile Corporation and benefited from Russian technology transfers. But as of 2018, the PL-12 was no longer reliant on Russian components for missile production.
The guidance system comprises data-linked mid-course guidance and active radar homing for terminal guidance. The missile uses Chinese rocket motor and airframe. The PL-12 may have a passive homing mode for use against jammers and AEW aircraft. The maximum range is estimated to be 100 kilometres (62 mi).
PL-12's overall dimension is larger than AIM-120 AMRAAM. Per PLAAF assessment, PL-12's capability sits between AIM-120B and AIM-120C, and the improved PL-12A is claimed to be comparable with the AIM-120C-4. The domestic version of the PL-12 features a variable-thrust rocket motor with a range of 70–100 kilometres (43–62 mi), while the export variant SD-10 features a reduced range of 60–70 kilometres (37–43 mi). According to the Royal United Services Institute, the range performance of PL-12 stands between AIM-120B and AIM-120C-5.
(600) PL-12/SD-10 BVRAAM (2006) 2010-2019 (475) For JF-17 and possibly modernized Mirage-3/5 combat aircraft
(60) PL-12/SD-10 BVRAAM (2015) 2018-2019 (24) For JF-17 combat aircraft