Munitions / Torpedoes / ET-52 torpedo

ET-52 torpedo

General Facts

  • TYPE
    Lightweight torpedo



    1987 - early 1990's

    Xian Precision Machinery Research Institute

    Early 1990's - present




    Low production costs
    Limited speed
    Limited range


The ET-52 is a modern lightweight torpedo of Chinese origin. Since 1984 China tried to copy and later produce under license the US Mk 46 torpedo as the Yu-7. In 1987 a batch of less complex Italian A.224S torpedoes was ordered in order to copy key components for local lightweight torpedo production.


The design of the ET-52 is generally similar to the A.224S, but features various components from the Mk 46 torpedo. The main difference between the ET-52 and the Mk 46 and Yu-7 is the use of an electric motor, which is cheaper and less complex but results in reduced performance. The layout is conventional with the seeker in the nose, the warhead in the middle and the batteries and engine at the rear.


The ET-52 uses a combination of passive and active acoustic guidance. At first it was believed that the seeker of the Mk 46 torpedo was used, but apparently the original CIACIO-S seeker from the A.224S design is used. It is possible that seeker type and capabilities may differ among the variants of the ET-52.


Due to its electric propulsion the ET-52 has a range of only 6 km and a speed of 30 kt. Target submarines can be engaged out to a depth of 400 meters. The 34 kg warhead is not as powerful as the 45 kg one used on the Yu-7 but will sink most targets.

Launch platform

The ET-52 can be launched by both aircraft and surface vessels. The Z-9 helicopter may carry a single torpedo on each side of the fuselage. When dropped from a helicopter a small parachute ensures the nose enters the water first. On surface vessels the ET-52 are launched from trainable three round launchers on the deck. The design of the launchers is based on the Italian B.515S.


The ET-52 is in service with the Chinese navy on both frigates and the naval version of the Z-9 helicopter. Unlike the more expensive Yu-7 the ET-52 has been exported to several Asian navies, including Bangladesh and Pakistan.


ET-52 torpedo

The ET-52 is a lightweight torpedo of Chinese origin. Externally it is very similar to the Italian A.224S torpedo and it can only be distinct by markings. Various versions are known to exists, including the ET-52C and ET-52E. The ET-52 can be easily distinct from the similar sized Chinese Yu-7. The Yu-7 has a twin propeller while the ET-52 has single propeller and a ring around the control fins.

TypeAnti-submarine torpedo
PlatformAircraft, surface ships
Diameter324 mm
Length2.7 m
Weight235 kg
Warhead34 kg
GuidanceActive/passive acoustic seeker
PropulsionSingle propeller
Power supplyElectric
Speed30 kt
Range6 km
Depth6 to 400 m depth


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