Future PLAN orbat discussion


AndrewS

Colonel
Registered Member
I've just been thinking about the number of Type-052C/Ds which will be in service after 2025

Say the PLAN is aiming to match the US Navy, which has 11 CVNs and 10 LHD type ships as the centrepiece of a blue-water fleet

We've seen a modernships graphic which shows a Chinese CSG comprising

1x Carrier
1x Resupply ship
2x Type-055 Large Destroyers (Cruisers)
3x Type-052C/D Destroyers
3x Type-054A Frigates

If you further assume that each LHD has 1 Type-052C/D as an escort, it means there is a requirement for approximately 40 Type-052C/Ds to escort CSGs and LHDs

We've already seen 31 Type-052C/Ds launched or in service, along with rumours that between 2021-2025, 20 more Type-052Ds will be produced. That's a total of 51 ships.

The implication is that the current (desired) fleet structure of Type-052C/Ds will be largely be built by 2025
Afterwards, I'm speculating that PLAN surface navy construction will switch to more carriers instead of these destroyers
 

Gloire_bb

Senior Member
Registered Member
1x Carrier
1x Resupply ship
2x Type-055 Large Destroyers (Cruisers)
3x Type-052C/D Destroyers
3x Type-054A Frigates
If CSG is forced to combat speeds, those 3 will struggle. 1-2 may still be useful for detached tasks (say, escorting AOE away), but otherwise, they are going to be a problem.

So there is merit in increasing 052C/D allocation at the cost of 054A - if only from this perspective alone. Existing numbers support such a shift pretty well.

Furthermore, as soon as 054Bs arrive(which should start within a few years per leak) - they'll probably be far more welcome with the carrier fleet(assuming they aren't going to be just CODADs anymore).

This will also free 054As for other, more suitable tasks.
 

AndrewS

Colonel
Registered Member
What estimates do we have for number of carriers that the PLAN is aiming for?

6-8 or actually up to the ~10 that the current US navy has?

It's mostly speculation

But historically, the world's largest trading nation builds the world's largest Navy to protect its overseas trade.

I just can't see the Chinese Navy settling for 8 carriers and accepting a position where China's overseas seaborne trade is still subject to the US Navy, if the resources to build a bigger Navy are available

Currently, the World Bank has the Chinese economy at about 30% larger than the US
That would be able to support a Chinese Navy that matches the size of the US Navy
By 2035, the Australian government white papers project the Chinese economy to be twice the size of the USA

So my minimum estimate is 11 Chinese supercarriers which matches the USA. Such a force would be able to credibly contest blue-water maritime supremacy beyond the 2nd Island Chain

But if the Chinese economy is twice the size, then why couldn't they aim for a Navy which is 50% larger than the USA.
That would imply a fleet of 16 Chinese supercarriers, and demonstrate a clear margin of superiority if there was any conflict
 

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