on 052 series DDGs for anti-stealth purposes and possibly
topside weight concerns. The 055 reportedly has a mechanically rotating planar L-band 3D for anti-stealth purposes,
similar to French/Italian Thales/Solex 51850M SMART-L
radars on recent Horizon and Type 45 destroyers. The 055
anti-stealth radar designation is possibly Type 518. The transfer of an L-band stealth track to the weapon-linked 346A
may be difficult.
China has learned the lesson of Western electromagnetic
interference (EMI) tragedies, such as the sinking of the HMS
Sheffield by an Argentine Exocet missile off the Falkland
Islands because its electronic support measures (ESM) system
was switched off to allow satellite communications. At Wuhan,
more than 750 miles inland, China has a long building housing the Institute 701 Chinese Warship Research and Design
Center, similar to U.S., U.K. and French electronic integration
facilities. In mid-2014, the original mast was removed and
placed adjacent to the Liaoning bridge and flight deck mock-up built on the roof. A mock-up of the Type 055 bridge and
main deck was constructed during 2014 and 2015 for EMI
testing. On the center’s roof is a mock-up of the 055 deck from
just forward of the 130-millimeter gun to part of the helicopter
landing pad aft. In April, a model of the new integrated radar,
communications and electronic countermeasures (ECM)
X-band sensor mast that would sit atop the bridge housing the
ammunition, explosives and dangerous articles (AEDA) was
added alongside the 055 hull.
The carrier bridge and flight deck built at Wuhan for
Liaoning in 2009 can provide an estimate of when construction will
begin on the Type 055. The time from the fabrication of the
Liaoning flight deck and superstructure on the 701 institute
roof until commissioning of the carrier was about two years.
When the 055 finally is built and launched, China will have
an advantage because its naval missiles outrange those of the
West. The range of the 055’s YJ- 18 anti-ship cruise missile is
220 kilometers, or about 140 miles. It has a cruising speed of
Mach 0.8 and a terminal speed of Mach 2. 5 for the last 40 kilometers. By comparison, the U.S. RGM-84D Harpoon ASM has
a 149-kilometer (93-mile) range and Mach 0.85 speed.
The new YJ-100 cruise missile claimed by some to be on
Type 055 never has been developed, but China is adding
new missiles to other vessels. China’s area defense anti-air
missile HQ-9A on 052 class ships is being augmented by the
new 24-cell HHQ- 10 point defense SAMs. Still, the SM- 2
SAM on U.S. DDGs outranges the HQ-9A. The latest U.S.
Block IV Tomahawk land attack missile with a 1,300-kilo-
meter range is emulated in the CJ- 10 land attack cruise missile. With a range exceeding 1,500 kilometers and a similar
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