Type 056 Class Opv/corvette


Lethe

Senior Member
I don't think China has a need for something like that. The Type 056 is already a pretty decent design, it is a corvette, not a frigate.
I agree that 056 is already "pretty decent" and should not be tinkered with too much, which is why I am advocating for a minimal cost change that would significantly enhance the capability of the type in the roles it already fulfils. Really, going from four to eight cells should be <2% increase in total lifecycle cost for ~50% increase in ability to prosecute surface and sub-surface threats. Why wouldn't you do this?

Unlike Russia which seems to stuff its corvettes to the gills with weapons because they have no larger ships and their shipyards suck
Even at the height of the Soviet Navy, it fielded many well armed small combatants and this owes to Russia's complex naval geography with high-end threats (surface, subsurface, land and air-based) at relatively short ranges. If the Soviet Union were ever in a position to field larger combatants on the scale of USN (or tomorrow's China) then the need for such vessels would decline somewhat, but that was never a realistic prospect. In all realistic scenarios past and present, well armed small combatants are an important part of Russia's overall naval force structure and this is not an artifact of a temporary lull in the construction of medium/large combatants.

056 was never meant to operate far away from the shore or being the one to hand out the killing blow. In an actual shooting war it will most likely remain comfortably under the cover of land-based aircraft and coastal missile batteries. Its main mission will be to secure/guard the littorals, allowing larger combatants to do the actual fighting. Alternatively, within the 1st island chain, it could be deployed under the guidance of larger destroyers to swarm/bait/distract the enemy as to create opportunities for other units to strike. If a 056 ever finds itself needing more that 2-4 Yu-11 or YJ-83 then there is something seriously wrong with your war fighting strategy.
I agree that the primary wartime role of 056 is to serve as a sensor node, with most actual target prosecution done in coordination with other assets, but that only goes so far. As above, considerable resources have been invested in creating this platform and operating it, so why would you not spend a tiny bit more to generate an outsize increase in its ability to engage surface and subsurface threats?

If the loadout is 2+2 YJ-83/Yu-11 then that gives the 056 precisely one shot at each type of target, because any engagement should consist of at least two shots to allow for mechanical or guidance failure, jamming, etc. Indeed, the more I think about it, a 2+2 loadout seems unworkable. With only four cells, the only sensible wartime loadout is either four YJ-83 or Yu-11, and accept an inability to engage either above or below the water. Maybe the 056s routinely carry YJ-83s and the 056As Yu-11s.

Will reply to your posts later, Tam.
 

Tam

Major
Registered Member
I agree that the primary wartime role of 056 is to serve as a sensor node, with most actual target prosecution done in coordination with other assets, but that only goes so far. As above, considerable resources have been invested in creating this platform and operating it, so why would you not spend a tiny bit more to generate an outsize increase in its ability to engage surface and subsurface threats?

If the loadout is 2+2 YJ-83/Yu-11 then that gives the 056 precisely one shot at each type of target, because any engagement should consist of at least two shots to allow for mechanical or guidance failure, jamming, etc. Indeed, the more I think about it, a 2+2 loadout seems unworkable. With only four cells, the only sensible wartime loadout is either four YJ-83 or Yu-11, and accept an inability to engage either above or below the water. Maybe the 056s routinely carry YJ-83s and the 056As Yu-11s.

Will reply to your posts later, Tam.
You already answered your own question. You have some ships carry YJ-83s and other ships all Yu-11s. There is no lack of vessels that can carry YJ-83s including Type 022 Houbeis and Type 053H3, a ship that is spotted with 056s in exercises.

Given that I have never seen a 056 ever fire a Yu-11, its more likely all the ships would simply carry YJ-83s, and ASW limited to using torpedoes, drones, depth charges, and Z-9 helicopters. That isn't unusual --- Grisha, Koni, Mirka, and Gepard class corvettes all use torpedoes, depth charges, helicopters and RBUs. Missiles that equip the Soviet corvettes are SAM and antiship only.

I don't believe that an outsize increase is exactly a tiny more or at least to the PLAN's calculations. They likely would have already done their inhouse math on this. If you want to increase the ship's length further to add more flying torpedoes, it would be better to lengthen the helicopter deck and add a hanger to allow you to support a larger helicopter that can carry more torpedoes. That goes back to the original P18N model.

The ship is a moving sensor node. The more nodes they can put into sea the better, all linked to a satellite network. That is why the ships comes with two SATCOMs, a bigger and a smaller one located behind the antiship missiles, one likely for X and another for K-band. That means the ship links to two satellite constellations. This is unusual for corvettes, as most corvettes would only feature one, and many not at all.

type-056-corvette-plan.jpg


The much better armed Gepard class barely has any at all, except for a small one but it can be for a datalink.


vukhinga-4_xdhp (1).jpg


The last batch of 056A showed a different and larger SATCOM, in addition to a new SATCOM or datalink on top of the bridge. That shows you where the real focus of this ship lies.

Screenshot 2020-09-26 at 1.58.10 PM.png


Let me add to that that this flat panel SATCOM or datalink is also being retrofitted to older 056 ships. While the intention of this picture is to capture the HQ-10 being launched, it inadvertently captures the image of the retrofitted datalink behind it to the left of the picture.

微信图片_20200729222228.jpg


The domes are typical of a flat panel SATCOM with a phase array. Below is an example of a flat panel SATCOM used commercially. Arrays of this type is designed to communicate with things above, such as satellites but not exclusive to them, as it can be used with aircraft, helicopters and not the least, drones. One potential function is CEC.


unnamed (2).png
 

dankris

Junior Member
Registered Member
I don't understand what's the fuss with adding more missiles to 056As. Just take a look at the design.

Type 056A.jpg

Aside from the circled yellow location (already filled with 2x2 missile launchers), where else are you going to put the additional missiles?

p.s. What is the max size of the image allowable in this forum? I got the original pics from what I think is @Jeff Head 's blog (BTW, thanks!), but when I tried to share it, the forum says the image is too large. The one I shared had been compressed.
 

FangYuan

New Member
Registered Member
I don't understand what's the fuss with adding more missiles to 056As. Just take a look at the design.

View attachment 64011

Aside from the circled yellow location (already filled with 2x2 missile launchers), where else are you going to put the additional missiles?
I think this has to do with cost and structure. Vertical launch systems are more expensive and take up a lot of space inside
 

daifo

Junior Member
Registered Member
Aside from the circled yellow location (already filled with 2x2 missile launchers), where else are you going to put the additional missiles?
Just bolt them to the helicopter pad for ships that will not be landing copters or not designated for asw
 

lcloo

Junior Member
There is no issue that type 056 can not be fitted with 4 missile launchers. The existing SSM configuration is just what the current primary mission called for, i.e. coastal patrol, ASW patrol, coastal escort for inbound and outbound larger war ships and seaport defense. If they change the primary mission role of type 056, then weapon configuration will be changed accordingly.

For littoral attack role, there is type 022 with 8 SSM.

The point to ponder is can the enemy ships come close to 500km-1,000km range from China's shorelines during war time, and then need to be defended by these small ships?

0 0  (183).jpg
 
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Tam

Major
Registered Member
I don't understand what's the fuss with adding more missiles to 056As. Just take a look at the design.

View attachment 64011

Aside from the circled yellow location (already filled with 2x2 missile launchers), where else are you going to put the additional missiles?

p.s. What is the max size of the image allowable in this forum? I got the original pics from what I think is @Jeff Head 's blog (BTW, thanks!), but when I tried to share it, the forum says the image is too large. The one I shared had been compressed.
I think Lethe was trying to ask why don't you lengthen the ship just a little so you can fit 8 launchers.

I may think that such considerations and proposals may be around during the ship's genesis in the drawing boards. A warship typically floats around dozens of alternative proposals before one concept is selected.

For whatever reason, the PLAN stuck to four. Actually when I first saw the ship, I was surprised, as it seemed so un-PLAN, which typically has surface combatants that don't spare in their antiship launchers. Those old Luda class destroyers, with double the displacement, has as much as 16 antiship missiles. My view on this is that the PLAN has already started changes in the way it thinks and in its doctrines, moving away from the Soviet approach of asymmetric area denial towards a more symmetric navy that needs to make a strong visual presence and statement.

The 056 isn't originally made as an ASW ship but an an OPV. Its primary point of contention would be other small ships of its ilk, and there is plenty. The 056 is likely based on the HTMS Pattani or the Thai Navy's Pattani class, the pair of which was made by Hudong Zhonghua. The dimensions, the displacement, and the layout of the two are similar.


26762071129_3cf7606d8a_b.jpg


The PLAN never had a true OPV before, and they were probably impressed with what they saw with the Pattani class before the ships were handed over to the Thais. Previously, the PLAN used FACs and subchasers for their patrol duties.


2q3bq1k.jpg


Not exactly the best vessels for patrols while facing more modern navies.
 

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