China received its seventh Type 055 destroyer, eighth is underway
BEIJING, CHINA — Zunyi, the seventh Type 055 destroyer in the Chinese People’s Liberation Army [PLA] fleet, has made its first public appearance since commissioning. This is reported by the Chinese publication Global Times.
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According to journalists, the newest ship was shown in a television report on the occasion of the celebration of the Lunar New Year in the city of Zunyi, after which the destroyer is named.
Zunyi’s induction into China’s navy has not been officially announced, but a Beijing-based military expert, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Global Times that the ship’s appearance in the TV report most likely indicates that it has been ordered and has become the seventh destroyer Type-055 built for the Chinese Navy.
The first destroyer of this type, Nanchang, joined the PRC fleet in January 2020. It was followed by Lhasa, Anshan, Wuxi, Dalian and Yanan.
Shi Hong, editor-in-chief of Shipborne Weapons magazine, told the Global Times that the Type-055 destroyers are the world’s best ships of this class in terms of integrated capabilities.
The eighth is underway
According to journalists, the eighth Type-055 destroyer was launched in August 2020. Analysts suggest that given the pace of production in Chinese shipyards, it will be handed over to the PLA fleet soon.
In China, Type-055 class destroyers belong to the fourth generation. In size, with a displacement of about 13,000 tons, they are inferior only to the American destroyers of the Zumwalt type [displacement – 14,500 tons], but they are superior to the destroyers of the Arleigh Burke type and the cruisers Ticonderoga.
The main purpose of the Type-055 destroyers is to escort aircraft carrier strike groups. They are also called upon to act as flagships of naval detachments.
About Type 055
The Type-055 class destroyer is 183 meters long, 20 meters wide, and 6.6 meters in the draft. Powered by four 28 MW QC-280 gas turbines, these ships reach speeds of up to 30 knots. Sailing range – 5000 nautical miles. Crew – more than 300 people.
Type-055 destroyers are armed with HQ-9B anti-aircraft missiles with a range of up to 200 km and HQ-26 anti-aircraft missiles [similar to the American SM-3], YJ-18A anti-ship missiles [similar to the Russian Kalibr]. It is assumed that the YU-8A anti-submarine missiles are also included in the arsenal. The destroyer is also equipped with a fully automatic H/PJ-38 130 mm gun, four H/PJ-11 30 mm anti-aircraft guns, HQ-10 short-range anti-aircraft missile systems, and torpedoes.
In total, the Chinese Navy plans to receive 16 Type-055 destroyers.
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