1965年8月9-10日 钱学森参加了周恩来主持的中央专门委员会第13次会议。专委会上提出争取提前搞出固体导弹。原七机部四院开始组建固体导弹的研制队伍，论证固体导弹发展规划。当时，虽然解决了推进剂配方和浇铸成型工艺，不稳定燃烧等技术难题，但要研制大型固体发动机还是很困难的。在比较几个方案之后，七机部决定先搞一个单级固体近程导弹(东风六十一号)，以积累经验，锻炼队伍，进行基地建设，然后再发展多级中、远程固体导弹。（ 《钱学森年谱 初编 》 ，p231）
===China's Ballistic Missile Programs
John Wilson Lewis and Hua Di
International Security, Fall 1992 (Vol. 17, No. 2), pp 32-33
Another attempt to develop tactical ballistic missiles occurred in June 1966, at the onset of the Cultural Revolution. With the spotlight on Mao, all institutes competed for his approval, and the Fourth Academy, envious of the First Academy's celebrated contributions to the DF program, proposed the development of a single-stage solid-propellant tactical missile. The Fourth had achieved success in casting grains of polysulfide-rubber-based composite solid propellants up to one meter in diameter. The size was too small for long-range missiles but adequate for small tactical weapons.
The proposed missile, first dubbed DF-41 and later DF-61, did not receive high-level approval but, like many other projects at the time, work on it proceeded at the local level despite Beijing's lack of interest in tactical missiles. The program's fate thus depended principally on the mood of the society, and it quietly died when the fervor of the moment passed on to other targets. Almost as a consolation prize, the central leadership assigned the Fourth Academy the task of starting the JL-1 SLBM program in March 1967.
Interest in a tactical missile did not reappear until 1975. In April that year, during Kim II Sung（金日成）'s visit to Beijing, North Korean Defense Minister O Jin U (吴振宇) inquired whether China could equip his forces with 600 km missiles. The Chinese said no, but the timing of O's question coincided with the PLA's interest in developing weapons that could counter the Soviet threat along the Chinese border. At a meeting in 1975, the head of the Operations Department of the PLA General Staff argued that a few such missiles, either conventional or nuclear, could block remote mountainous passes along the border and thereby halt or impede a Soviet invasion. The Central Military Commission agreed.
It authorized an immediate R&D program and gave the project the same DF-61 name as the aborted 1966 project. The task was to build a missile for both foreign military assistance and domestic use. At that time, the Chinese supported the transfer to North Korea as a political rather than a financial arrangement. It would help draw Pyongyang away from Moscow. The program was approved in 1976.
This single-stage mobile missile, unlike the 1966 DF-61, would have a pre-packed liquid propellant and come in a 600km version with a 1,000kg conventional warhead and a 1,000km, 500kg nuclear version for Chinese use only. Its designers studied the use of cluster bomblets and fuel-air explosives for the conventional warheads. In 1976 the army tested the effectiveness of these warheads by detonating American weapons which had been captured by the Vietnamese and transferred to China.
The builders of the one-by-nine-meter DF-61 sought to adapt many of the DF technologies to the DF-61. Its fully inertial computerized strap-down guidance system and propellant (AK-40 and UDMH) mirrored those of the DF-14 mobile IRBM then under development. The DF-61 would use four vernier combustion chambers (and their associated servomechanisms for attitude control) and a turbo-pump system; these technologies were to be derived from the DF-5's second stage. The Chinese hoped that the DF-61 would exceed the performance of the somewhat comparable American Lance and Soviet Scud-C. However, the DF-61 program, which had been backed by Chen Xilian (陈锡联 who was then running the daily affairs of the Central Military Commission), collapsed when Chen was ousted in 1978.