restricted South China Sea operating area, then sea depths too shallow especially south of the
Natuna Islands (see Map B),
mainland targets from the protected (near Chinese) waters the SSBNs have to operate in.
commanders to carry armed JL-2s or deliver the codes commanders to launch. Basically against
Communist Party's tight control of military.
The lack of adequate 1,000+ meter depth in large areas of the 3,500,000 square kms South China Sea may limit usable SSBN operational area to less than 2,000,000 square kms.
This reduced area to cover with sensors makes it easier for the US to lay seafloor or tethered sensors (including SOSUS) in and around that reduced usable SSBN area.
Tethering means that even in a 2,000 meter deep area a sensor with a 1,200 meter long tether (from the seafloor) would be very useful detecting Chinese SSBNs.
I've made several generalisations that might be disputed by reading of other websites and documents including:
- US DoD's "Chinese Military Power 2016") large PDF at:
China may take 25 years to attain the quality of US, UK and French SSBNs of today and to develop a JL-3 or a JL-4 SLBM with the range and accuracy of the Trident II SLBM.