PLAN breaking news, pics, & videos

Discussion in 'Navy' started by Jeff Head, Oct 24, 2014.

  1. latenlazy
    Offline

    latenlazy Major

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    2,488
    I don’t think so? If I argued that position before (and I actually think I might have been arguing on the 3-class side of the debate, though I would have to check) it wouldn’t be very enthusiastically, since I actually don’t have very strong opinions on this bit of prognostication.
     
  2. Jura
    Offline

    Jura Lieutenant General

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2013
    Messages:
    16,592
    Likes Received:
    22,533
    you achieved almost
    #272 AndrewS, Jul 29, 2017
    level
    me (LOL I know nobody cares)? still Jul 28, 2017

     
  3. Lethe
    Offline

    Lethe Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2014
    Messages:
    961
    Likes Received:
    1,300
    I don't think China will have a neat and tidy orbat in the foreseeable future. By the time today's legacy vessels are retired, new types will have been born.

    Simplicity and order are alluring qualities to those of us who seek to keep track of what the Chinese navy is, what it will become, and how it compares to others, but recall that the US Navy during the Cold War was a chaotic collection of many different classes of ships. Today, the Royal Navy is very neat and tidy and easy to comprehend. One orbat reflected the dynamism of an exuberant superpower, the other reflects the conservatism of a nation in decline.
     
    #1963 Lethe, Feb 12, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
    wuguanhui, perfume, Yodello and 3 others like this.
  4. Iron Man
    Offline

    Iron Man Captain
    Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2015
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    2,378
    I wouldn't look at the past for an indication of the future, at least as far as the number of ship classes go. In any modern navy these days. The trend has inexorably been towards more ships in fewer classes. This is as true for the PLAN now as it has been for the USN and the RN. Ship design is getting more and more complex meaning more of the total life cycle cost and development timeline is spent in R&D, which means the natural trend has been to design fewer ship classes and build more ships within each class, with perhaps incremental improvements coming in stages. As far as the PLAN specifically, by the time the legacy vessels are retired, by which I assume you mean the Sovs, 051B, and 052s, we will be in the 2030s, at which time I expect the PLAN to still be commissioning some variation of 054B, 052E, and 055A. And probably a 097 and 098. But this certainly isn't going to be like the Cold War where we see a new ship class every 5 or 6 years.
     
    Yodello, antiterror13 and Lethe like this.
  5. Lethe
    Offline

    Lethe Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2014
    Messages:
    961
    Likes Received:
    1,300
    I'm sure there is some validity to this, and partly for that reason I do not expect a return to the frenetic pace of the past. But on the other hand, much of the trend towards consolidation you identify is a function not of trends in technology and their relation to military requirements, but of political and fiscal circumstances -- circumstances that, one hopes, will not apply to China in future.

    I was thinking mid-late 2030s. It's possible that the future will be as you describe, but I think this is a limited or partial vision of what is possible going forward. My previous discussion of a possible future in which 055 replaces 052x in production was part of a broader conception wherein the 054 series is replaced by a larger 6000-ton class frigate, and the 056 series by a 2500-ton light frigate. Such "juggling of the weight classes" is one form of evolution that remains possible.

    Other forms of evolution could be the result of new technologies, but even without disruptive technological developments, I hope -- and to a certain extent expect -- that as PLAN progresses in its 'modernisation drive', that it will begin to develop new operational concepts and types of platforms specific to its requirements, just as the Soviet Navy was a unique creature, with platforms (such as its "Aviation Cruisers") that were difficult to compare with those of others.
     
    wuguanhui likes this.
  6. Iron Man
    Offline

    Iron Man Captain
    Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2015
    Messages:
    2,658
    Likes Received:
    2,378
    I struggle to think of an example where this is actually the case in this day and age. Perhaps the Zumwalt? Here we have a ship that was meant to be the successor to the Arleigh Burke (to be built in conjunction with the CG(X) which was to be the Tico replacement), not an addition to the fleet structure. It was canceled because of cost, sure, but also because of changing threat and mission environments, and had it been successful it would have gone on to replace the ABs as they retired from the fleet. An extreme example of what I'm talking about is the Virginia, which started production in 2000 and will not be replaced by another SSN design until the mid 2040s. That's 40+ years of a single SSN design, dramatically different from the Cold War years.

    But have you asked yourself what is the need for ships of these tonnages? For example a 6,000t "frigate" is meant to do what that a (presumably lighter) "054B" isn't? If you only bifurcate roles in the blue water portion of a navy (i.e. excluding corvettes), you will be assigning the smaller of the duo to ASW and medium range air defense, and the larger of the duo to command, long range air defense, and possibly ballistic missile defense. Why do you need a 6,000t frigate to perform the role of ASW and local air defense? A 32-cell UVLS with quad-packing MRSAMs would give you a useful load of 32 MRSAMs, 8 ASW missiles, and 8 ASCMs, with 8 cells left over to play with. Similarly for the corvette class, why a 2,500t ship that is meant for coastal patrol? What additional duties do you envision for your 2,500t vessel that the 1,500t 056A does not currently fulfill and why does it need to take on these extra duties in first place? A hangar, maybe? Sure, but a hangar can demonstrably be had for a few hundred extra tons of steel, the 1,800t P18 being the perfect example.

    Possibly, but just because it's new or different doesn't mean it's better. Evolution has its dead ends, as does naval ship design. Ships like Moskva, Kiev, and Zumwalt (and perhaps even LCS) certainly fit into these dead end designs. The Moskva and Kiev are failures IMO because they attempted to combine cruiser and carrier and failed at both because they were good at neither.
     
  7. Bltizo
    Offline

    Bltizo Lieutenant General

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    11,193
    Likes Received:
    12,608
    Oh I remember what you mean now. You're talking about the 055 + future large frigate or medium destroyer two class arrangement.


    I think my position on this has been that in the long term, a future two class force structure like that might be plausible, but before then, a three class structure makes more sense and will precede a potential two class force structure if it ever emerges.

    I ask you what you meant by "fan estimations" of 055's eventual numbers, because my opinion of both the three class structure and the two class structure can exist where a large number of 055X weight class destroyers have been produced.


    Putting it another way, I don't necessarily think a two class force structure will emerge, but I do think it will be likely that a large number of 055s will be eventually produced, and whether 052D/E production continues as well does not necessarily limit the eventual numbers of 055s that may be built.
     
    N00813 likes this.
  8. Tam
    Offline

    Tam Junior Member
    Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2016
    Messages:
    649
    Likes Received:
    1,034
    I hate speculating about future orbats. I tend to think that the PLAN operates with long term plans, but every few years, accesses, reviews, and adjusts to political, situational and technological changes.

    What feels certain for now are the directions they are going:

    Future carrier battle groups, and the necessity to fill the ships surrounding this.

    To create the Great Wall of the Sea --- defense against air, submarine, surface and including cruise missile and ballistic.

    Expand this Great Wall of the Sea from First Island chain to Second Island Chain, then to Indian and Pacific Oceans.

    055X vs. 052X ratio and distribution, likely on a bang to the yuan factor. AAW and ASuW VLS numbers and total missile weight tends to scale better on bigger ships, which favors 055 and even bigger ships, but 052X and 054X as well benefits from volume amortization, and ASW benefits more from the number of hulls you put into the water. I do think 054B might be a new ship design, based on the "Type 057" but retains the 054 number. Sooner or later you will run out of "fifties" for Type designation. If based on "Type 057", this remains to be an intermediate size frigate, centered around 4000 tons. This for me, makes 052X more likely between the 4000 ton to 12,000 ton gap.

    I wonder if the 054B will go to a CODAG configuration with its IEP, discarding the previous CODAD. I also wonder if there will be GP and ASW speciality configurations for the 054B (YJ-12 equipped vs YU-10 equipped.)
     
  9. latenlazy
    Offline

    latenlazy Major

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    2,488
    I actually don’t like this exercise much either, but I do think once in a while it’s useful to have this discussion just to impress upon the possibility that China’s naval ambitious may be a lot bigger than we sometimes present them to be.
     
  10. Tam
    Offline

    Tam Junior Member
    Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2016
    Messages:
    649
    Likes Received:
    1,034
    Another factor I forgot to mention about the PLAN's expansion, is that the GDP continues to grow. At some point it will overtake the US GDP, and if it maintains a 2-3% of GDP on defense expenditures, even exceed that of the US itself. The PLAN as we have seen recently, has a growing share of the budget increases as well. That means what its spending now, is merely the tip of the iceberg when compared to the next decade. Even by 2030 to 2040, there is still cheap labor fuel and combined with increases of productivity per worker thanks to automation, plus a vast middle class that continues to grow, we can still see fervent economic growth, that is going to sync with future increases in defense and naval spending. What we see now from the PLAN may still be in its early stage of growth, and we have seen nothing yet.

    I see the PLAN's role shifting and evolving. Contention of Taiwan, and contested islands in the ECS and SCS, will give way to priority to the PLAN as a protector of this economic growth, by projecting power and protecting trade routes of it's economic sphere (OBOR, Shanghai Bloc, etc,.) The PLAN and the Party will give way more and more to Mahanian navalism, seeking to achieve symmetric peer to peer equality, and away from the A2AD strategies experts once thought it would pursue at the turn of the century.

    Compared to ORBATs, I am far more interested how upgrades can be done. Stealthy things like the F-35 and LRASM introduced to the Asian sphere, are disruptive threats that need to be countered. I am not sure if many of the ships at the way they are, are survivable in a hot conflict in the next decade or two. In order to retain as much 054x and 052x, which will become older designs, they would have to be upgraded in order to further improve their ability to detect and target. But the upgrades need to be done in a way that isn't complex and require the least structural or "deep" changes to the ship.

    Type 052C ---
    Replace Type 346 panels to the Type 346B standard using GaN.
    Type 730s changed to one Type 1130 and one HQ-10 24 cell launcher.
    YJ-62 missiles retired, replaced by YJ-12.
    VLS retained. Earlier version of HQ-9 retired and replaced by later versions with active guidance. I may eliminate the C band array for target illumination for more S-band elements for greater search and tracking, and I suspect is the version used for the carriers.
    Back end, transmitter and receiver upgrades to the Type 364, 344, 366 and 517 radars. Or conversion of Type 344 and 366 radars to a combined AESA X-band unit and Type 364 to a rotating scan digital phase array C-band unit, preferably AESA.

    Type 054A ---
    Back end, transmitter and receiver upgrades to the Type 364, 344, 366 and 382 radars. Or conversion of Type 344 and 366 radars to a combined AESA X-band unit, Type 364 replaced with a rotating scan AESA C band unit, and Type 382 to an S-band AESA, using two rotating Type 346 panels.
    H/AJK-16 VLS retained. HQ-16 retired, replaced by a new version of HQ-16 with active guidance, and quad pack of DK-10 also with active guidance.
    YJ-83s replaced by either four YJ-12s or eight Yu-10s in an ASW configuration.
    MR-90 radars used for target illumination replaced by four X-band fire control radars, with active elements. The locations of the MR90s appear to give the best radar coverage around the ship to deal with a multiple axis saturation attack. Instead of target illumination, these radars work mainly on track while scan modes to track multiple objects and provide high quality tracks on targets all around the ship, which the data is fed via data link to the missiles. The basis for the arrays can be those used for the J-11D such as shown below.

    [​IMG]
     
    wuguanhui and Klon like this.
Loading...

Share This Page