April 19, 2012:
Satellite images confirm that China does have a new ballistic missile, the DF-16, apparently the same one that Taiwanese intelligence officials revealed last year. At that time the Taiwanese asserted that China had deployed a new ballistic missile, the DF (Dongfeng) 16 and that some of them were aimed at Taiwan. The DF-16 had never been mentioned publically before. It appears to be an upgrade of the DF-15, as the Taiwanese announcement only described the DF-16 as having a "longer range."
Most of the 1,600 ballistic missiles aimed at Taiwan are DF-11 and DF-15 models. The DF-11 (also known as the M11) weighs 4.2 tons, has a range of 300 kilometers, and carries a .8 ton warhead. The DF-15 (M9) weighs 6.2 tons, has a range of 700 kilometers, and carries a half ton warhead. Both of these are solid fuel missiles, so the DF-16 probably would be as well. A "longer range" DF-15 would likely weigh over eight tons and have a range of 1,000 kilometers or more. Or something like that. Before last year there was no previous discussion of a DF-16 missile but the Chinese were known to have been continuing work on the DF-11/DF-15 class missiles, particularly warhead design (as in penetration aids to defeat anti-missile systems).