Future PLAN orbat discussion

Discussion in 'Navy' started by kwaigonegin, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Captain
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    With distributed warfare and battle networks, it's not really about *better* sensors anymore.
    It's about having MORE platforms, but with *good enough* sensors for the job.

    Given that the Type-56 and Type-54A are operating in low-risk areas next to the Chinese coast, how realistic is it for enemy ships to get to within 400km of mainland China in a 2030 scenario? And LRASMs can be launched at 700km.
    So why would the Type-56 and Type-54A need to target enemy ships at all?

    And isn't targeting enemy ships is really the job of airplanes or ships like destroyers? Not Corvettes or Frigates.

    In the 2030 timeframe, I reckon we're looking at a minimum of 60 destroyers in the Chinese Navy.
    They won't be guarding rear areas next to mainland China.
    They would be pushing out towards Okinawa or towards Guam.
    So that leaves older Corvettes and Frigates to cover lower-risk areas nearer mainland China.
     
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  2. Jura
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    Jura General

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    no, I don't think manufacturers of, off top of my head, SQS-53; Ultra 2150; Thales UMS; Zarya-something will be out of work soon LOL
     
  3. Bltizo
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    None of this changes the question about whether a shipborne AESA (as well as other relevant systems for your 2017 054B) would have been sufficiently mature and low cost for the PLAN to consider for their frigate if they wanted an 054B to enter service in 2017.


    If your counterargument is simply that the PLAN can have whatever budget they need for a new ship class, then I think you're giving yourself a bit of an easy out here.



    Extending power into blue water doesn't mean your littorals don't need to be patrolled, because the geography of China and the region means there will always be a number of countries with a naval presence in close proximity. Having a blue water capability doesn't mean your near abroad region is secure.

    I'm not opposed to giving more of the littoral patrol job to Coast Guard, but there are other capabilities like the 056A's ASW suite which is entirely inappropriate for a coast Guard, as is giving Coast Guard cutters things like AShMs.



    I think the difference is that I don't see the technological gap to be a "problem," because the 054As were developed and built in a time whereby the PLAN was forced to make hard decisions and the procurement of the class throughout the 2010s (eventually reaching its 30 ship run) provided them with a surge in modern blue water capable frigates that allowed them to build substantial experience and have a fleet structure that was able to perform the navy's missions adequately.

    We are only able to nitpick over the exact production run and some of the subsystems of 054A now after we've seen a few big ticket higher technology projects like 052D and 055 pay off, but we have the benefit of massive hindsight and with the benefit of knowing that there will be a rather large force of 052Ds and 055s that will reliably enter service by the early 2020s.
    Early to mid 2010s PLAN (when they would've placed the orders for the eventual 30 ship run of 054As) did not have that benefit, and they were already investing heavily on 052Ds and 055s for the future. I think our nitpicking of 054A is only happening because of the degree of success that 052Ds and 055s have been.
     
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  4. Tam
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    Tam Captain
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    Do you know how ridiculous you sound?

    Your networks are nothing without better sensors. The sensors are the links in the chain. Strong sensors make a strong chain. Weak sensors make a weak chain. A network is nothing without sensors.

    Why do you want to invest on something so useless then? If ships cannot protect China, what's the purpose of these ships?

    You need to realize that these ships need a MISSION. Hiding from the enemy is not a proper mission.

    No but targeting enemy aircraft, drones, and missiles that enter their defense zone is.

    Do you even know what the historical purpose and mission of destroyers were? They fight and destroy smaller ships like torpedo boats that attack battleships. Then they fight submarines and shoot down aircraft to defend convoys. Corvettes and frigates came to supplement these roles. When torpedo boats are replaced by missile boats and ships, the role remains the same with the object changed to reflect the times.

    And how do you expect these destroyers are defended from submarines? Or frigates? Or LCS armed with NSM? The very idea why you have small warships is that they are giant killers, and you need small warships to counter small warships.

    I expect the corvettes to help protect the destroyers all the way to the 1st Island chain (Ryukus, Miyako Straits) and the frigates to accompany the destroyers in full surface task groups. In fact PLAN's destroyer divisions are organized with combined destroyer/frigate formations, not with dedicated frigate formations. If you follow the idiom you train like you fight, Type 054A follow the 052C/D in task groups as they venture out through the Miyako Straits into the Philippine Sea.

    The way the PLAN trains and exercises on record do not follow the way you depict how they fight.
     
  5. Tam
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    Tam Captain
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    If it was mature and cheap enough for the export market, then its no longer an issue of technology, but specification.

    I would say that if they wanted to make the ship, they can have the budget for it. What's a few billion for an 11 trillion dollar economy? Remember that this is not a democracy.

    The idea of giving ASHMs to the Coast Guard isn't a bad idea. The US toyed with it at one time.

    The idea of patrolling your coast lines with ASW corvettes is not an invalid idea. The Soviet Union has tons of it. They also have a lot more coastline. The question is why do you need 70 corvettes?

    There was nothing wrong with the way the 054A was procured during that time and situation.

    But at some point, the conservatives within the PLAN was realizing that the domestic technology was advancing much faster and better than they had expected. Its truly a unique and rare situation where the naval planners themselves may have greatly underestimated what their own industry was capable of. None of these would matter in a theoretical battlespace in 2030, however. This would still be okay unless you are realizing your nation might be falling into the Thucydides Trap.
     
  6. Tam
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    Tam Captain
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    The Chinese Navy does not train like you describe hugging the coast. Maybe the old PLAN did. Not this one.

    To rely on AEW aircraft, drones and coastal radar, you need a CEC network.

    If you can detect LRASM on the horizon, you surely need working radar, preferably a very good one. That's the point of why you should update the Type 054A and even the 056 with such.

    Please do not try to rationalize inadequacy in design. You cannot risk real people's lives with this.

    You cannot rely on a few destroyers with powerful radar providing the detection bubble for the fleet. The problem lies with the boundaries of the bubbles and the earth's curvature. Smaller ships with advanced sensors can fill these gaps, and provide a better margin of their own self protection.

    You seem to be arguing going against the grain where the rest of the world's navies are going. They are equipping smaller ships with advanced sensors. The US is doing this with the LCS and with FFG(X). Look at all these smaller ships. Why are they all equipped with advanced sensors? Do they know something you don't?


    d6nvba-uiaif2np.jpg 2019102924.jpg p1761196.jpg
     
  7. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Captain
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    In the past and in the future, the Chinese merchant shipping fleet will still be hugging the Chinese coastline.
    Simply put, these are the areas with the lowest risk.

    Their escorts, by definition, will be operating alongside in the same areas.
     
  8. Tam
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    Tam Captain
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    That is not how the Chinese merchant fleet operates. The Chinese commercial fleet in terms of ship numbers, is the biggest commercial fleet in the world, and it is a true blue oceanic fleet that plies the seven seas and not leave an inch uncovered. Even the Chinese fishing fleet is in African waters, and the task force there has to check and escort them.

    Why do you think the Chinese Navy is still something like the 1990s? More and more the Chinese Navy is progressing towards a kind of structure, mission and purpose the Royal Navy had over a century ago.
     
  9. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Captain
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    Please don't attach pointless photos which just clutter the discussion.

    The discussion is about the future utility of the Type-56 Corvette and Type-54A Frigate.
    These ships can be relegated to low-risk rear areas next to the Chinese coastline in the future, given the large numbers of future destroyers and frigates that we can expect to see.
    There won't be large incoming LRASM attacks on ships in this area, because there is no targeting information available, plus the US Navy won't have the LRASMs to spare.
     
  10. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Captain
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    Yes, I know all this.

    But realistically, you have to accept that US aircraft carriers will dominate the oceans past the 2nd Island Chain.
    To challenge this, the Chinese Navy would have to build a larger fleet of aircraft carriers and obtain blue-water maritime superiority.
    That is simply not achievable in the next 15+ years

    Until this happens, you're just going to accept the harsh reality that i wartime, the Chinese merchant fleet will have to stay in protected waters.
    And geography means the merchant fleet will hug the Chinese coastline for the main part, but also reach down into the South China Seas and intermingle with ASEAN trade.

    But the key thing to remember is that China's theory of victory only requires the 1st Island Chain.
     
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