Type 055 DDG Large Destroyer Thread


Tam

Brigadier
Registered Member
I recall writings that the Ticos had too many VLS to actually be used, which is why the Arleigh Burkes only have 96 VLS cells.

But if it makes you feel better, the Type-055 VLS cells are twice the size of the Mk41 VLS on the KDX and Ticos.
That is based on 85x85cm and a depth of 9m, versus the Mk41 at 61x61cm and 7m depth

In order to be clear, its like this. Mk. 41 is said to be around 6.8 meters and 7.7 meters in length, but its the canister sizes that matter. Here we have 25" or .635 meters in diameter with 5.8 meters in length for one canister and 6.7 meters in length for another. Note that there is an extra meter of separation between the canister length and the physical VLS length = 5.8 meter canister length to 6.8 meter VLS length and 6.7 meter canister length to 7.7 meter VLS length. This separation should be for the exhaust transfer channel beneath the canister that routs the gas to the central plenum.

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U-VLS has two lengths, with a diameter of .85 meters. The first length is 7 meters and the second length is 9 meters. Now this is likely to be canister length, not physical VLS length. The shorter length is for HQ-9 launching and the second length is for YJ-18 launching. Given that the advertised length of the HQ-9 is about 6.8 meters, the canister containing it should be at least 7 meters allowable for missile space not counting cold launch compress gas battle, so the physical length of the shorter U-VLS should be around 8 meters. I estimated from the length of the YJ-18 to be around 8.2 to 8.5 meters, with the missile allowable to be a maximum of 9 meters, and the entire canister length to be around 10 meters to allow for the hot launch channel. This is because U-VLS is a CCL, and the launch system is therefore integrated into the bottom of the canister itself whereas in the Mk. 41, the bottom of the canister outputs to transfer channel.

Burke and Tico should be a mix of both 5.8 and 6.7 meter canister lengths in an undetermined amount. The shorter one is for SM-2 and ESSM and the longer one for Tomahawks and SM-6.

The 052D is likely Bank 1 and 2 = 7 meters, Bank 3 and 4 = 9 meters, rear Bank 5 to 8 = 7 meters. The two rear banks at the bow are capable of firing YJ-18s, 16 of which. The rest fires HQ-9. While the purpose of this VLS is currently air defense, a 7 meter deep VLS remains respectable and is capable of firing a future VLS launched cruise missile in the future.

The 055 might be all 9 meters because we have seen YJ-18s being fired at the rear VLS. Unless it is raised above the main deck level, which is not in this case here, the rear VLS also has to be over machinery space which constrains its depth, which explains why many smaller ships like frigates for instance, don't have rear VLS, and why the 052D's rear VLS should be HQ-9 only. The front VLS banks are ahead of the machinery space in the ship which usually starts around where under the superstructure is. This area towards the bow is the deeper part of the ship which explains why the longer U-VLS is located in front of the superstructure but behind the foremost front VLS.

But given the 055 has 9 meter VLS without a raised main deck at the rear is pretty impressive, and this suggests to me that every one of the 112 VLS on the ship is a ginormous 9 meters in length. If you put that in Russian terms, that means each VLS is capable of firing a Kalibr or an Onix, and that means the ship has an antiship killing capacity that easily exceeds Slavas and even the Kirovs.

To put it short, a ship capable of firing 112 YJ-18/Kalibr/Klub/Onix sized missiles is pretty dope.
 

AndrewS

Colonel
Registered Member
That does make sense and assuages me somewhat, though I was thinking more a sustained combat scenario against a large number of enemy forces (i.e. US + allied navies), where the total VLS capacity comes into play, which actually might happen sooner than you think, I mean missiles get launched pretty fast in a high-intensity engagement. Though I guess in this case the more important number would be the total number of VLS cells across the fleet, so China can make up for a lower number per ship by just building more 055s + 052Ds. But you'd also need to consider cost-effectiveness, i.e. marginal cost per VLS cell, and it seems to me to be much cheaper to squeeze in more VLS into each ship than to build more whole new ships with all the other subsystems and costs they entail, for the same total number. But Russia is much worse than the PLAN in this regard, with a bunch of frigates/corvettes carrying a very small number of UVLS each.

It's not just the radar, but the fire-control available on each ship to guide missiles.

The Burke ended up with 3 fire-control illuminators for 96 VLS.
The Tico had 4 fire-control illuminators for 128 VLS.
The Type-052D has 2 fire control illuminators for 64 VLS.

You can see a clear relationship between 1 dedicated fire-control illuminators for 32 VLS cells.
NB. my understanding is that the Type-055 dispenses with dedicated fire-control illuminators and uses AESA panels instead.

In any case, 112 VLS cells would be consistent with a single mission requirement for [96 VLS cells for air-defence + 16 cells for strike]


I'm not fixated on the 128 number, obviously even higher is better, but the larger Chinese VLS diameter does help explain the lack of parity.

I agree that Chinese missiles, especially AShM, are much more capable each (though the gap may be dwindling as the US deploys their new longer ranged stealth ones)

055s can't easily go into port and reload in wartime, suggesting that seems pretty silly.

Does anyone know who has the relative advantage in terms of detection range and so on for the 055's Type 346B vs the new SPY-6?

You do realise that the Arleigh Burkes and Ticonderogas have to go to port to reload as well?
And that the US fleet is overwhelmingly made up of Arleigh Burkes with only 96 VLS cells.
Or that the next-gen Zumwalt only had 80 VLS cells.

So why does a Type-055 with 112 VLS cells need any more?

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In a Taiwan scenario, a large number of air defence destroyers can expect to be defending the beachhead and resupply ships for weeks or months. We're looking at less than 24hours for these ships to sail to a major naval base, reload, and get back to the beachhead.

Realistically, air defence destroyers on other missions would only go as far as 1500km from Mainland China for 90% of the time.
That's a maximum of 4 days for a reload to/from a naval base.

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Also note how the USA is planning for its fleet of large AEGIS ships to naturally dwindle from 80 today to 60-ish.
From the US point of view, resupply is an even bigger issue for them.

But they are still going with fewer larger ships, and more smaller ships that have fewer VLS cells.
 

AndrewS

Colonel
Registered Member
which missile systems can respond to SM-3/6 missiles in the china pacific

Well, the response to more SM-3/6 missiles is for China to build more offensive antiship missiles.

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As for Chinese equivalent missiles, China doesn't have to worry about large numbers of ballistic missiles.
The HQ-19 (THAAD? equivalent) may already be in service, but there's no need to build them in large numbers like the SM-3

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It also doesn't make any sense for China to build a SM-6 missile. It has too many missions which means it is overengineered and expensive.

For example, the SM-6 is tasked as an antiship weapon, yet it has a small warhead.
The Chinese Navy goes with dedicated antiship missiles like the YJ-12 which have longer-range, are cheaper and have a much bigger warhead.

The SM-6 also has GPS added for land-attack missions. Yet again, it has a small warhead.
It's also really, really expensive compared to a dedicated land-attack missile which would be longer-ranged and have a much bigger warhead.

Then you're left with the standard long-range air-defence mission against aircraft and atmospheric missiles.
For that, the SM-6 and the latest HQ-9s are roughly comparable and are a similar weight.

EDIT. Note that the US Navy is unable to field a YJ-12 type missile with a large warhead, because their Mk41 VLS cells are too small.
I'm seeing a cost of $1.8M for a YJ-12 antiship missile versus $4.3M for an SM-6, which is over twice as much. But treat that figure with caution. Plus the YJ-12 warhead is somewhere between 3-8x larger than the SM-6 warhead
 
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Gloire_bb

Senior Member
Registered Member
For example, the SM-6 is tasked as an antiship weapon, yet it has a small warhead.
Offtop: Sm-6 IB is expected to get way better in this regard.
Hard to tell where it will go, but something around 120-150 kg is very much doable (also it's a level of DP missiles of the past).
The Chinese Navy goes with dedicated antiship missiles like the YJ-12 which have longer-range, are cheaper and have a much bigger warhead.
It's hard to tell which of them has a longer range.
For a pure ballistic toss, SM series with 21" boster even with a much larger warhead will probably be good for at least 6-700 km. That's a lot.

Also, in a large scheme of things, for large VLS ships such universalization IMHO is the future - especially because HHQ-9 series, much like S-300Fs, have larger warheads than older SM series in the first place. For a simple reason of available depth of magazines for both purposes.

For smaller ships, which can't allow large numbers of 2t missiles, separation of purpose makes more sense, but neither 052D nor 055 are exactly small.
 

AndrewS

Colonel
Registered Member
Offtop: Sm-6 IB is expected to get way better in this regard.
Hard to tell where it will go, but something around 120-150 kg is very much doable (also it's a level of DP missiles of the past).

It's hard to tell which of them has a longer range.
For a pure ballistic toss, SM series with 21" boster even with a much larger warhead will probably be good for at least 6-700 km. That's a lot.

Also, in a large scheme of things, for large VLS ships such universalization IMHO is the future - especially because HHQ-9 series, much like S-300Fs, have larger warheads than older SM series in the first place. For a simple reason of available depth of magazines for both purposes.

For smaller ships, which can't allow large numbers of 2t missiles, separation of purpose makes more sense, but neither 052D nor 055 are exactly small.

But these SM-6 developments still don't change the overall statement that they are expensive, short-ranged and have smaller payloads when compared to a dedicated antiship missile or land-attack missile.

Anyway, back on topic.
 

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