Monday, June 14, 2010

Latest "sufaced" photos of the 093 SHANG Class SSN Nuclear Submarines

Huitong's write up (here)

Type 093/09III Shang class is the new generation of SSN replacing the old Type 091. Its main mission was speculated to defend against American CVBG attacks in the west Pacific. This sub has been under development for more than 10 years but encoutered certain technological bottlenecks in the early 90s particularly in the areas of noise reduction measures. It was reported Russian assistance was sought to resolve those critical issues in the late 90s. However Type 093 appears to have limited Russian influences such as a double hull design and is longer longer than Type 091. It features a more reliable and powerful pressurized water reactor (PWR), a new bow sonar and three flank sonar arrays (H/SQG-207) on each side of the hull. Its noise level is further reduced by a new asymmetrical seven blade skewed propeller and anechoic tiles. The displacement of Type 093 was estimated to be 6,000 dived. It is expected to be able to fire advanced wire-guided torpedos and launch YJ-82 AshMs. Its overall combat capability was thought to be comparable to Russian Victor III class in the late 70s, but still representing a significant technological achievement when compared with its predecessor. The inital batch of 2 were built (407 & 408?). The first boat was launched between 2000-01 and has been undergoing sea trial since late 2002. It was finally commissioned in late 2006. A total number of 6-8 093 SSNs were projected. At least one 093 has been deployed to a naval base near Sanya in Hannan Island facing South China Sea. A new design (Type 095/09V) has been under development, suggesting that Shang SSN may not be advanced enough to fully meet PLAN's requirements. The latest rumor claimed that Type 095 might feature vertically launched SLCMs.

1 comment:

duskylim said...

Although grainy at full magnification, the pictures already show a sub with a finer length-to-width ratio (finess ratio) than the preceding Han class which had a rounder, fuller form.

The hull form and construction remind me of the Los Angeles class (688 boats)of the US Navy.

Those subs had a long, cylindrical center section, in contrast to the preceding Skipjack class of boats - whose hull form tapered continuously from bow to stern.

Unlike the Los Angeles class, the deck plates of the Shang class are flattened rather than curved - to make it easier to walk on them.

The sail is proportionally smaller than in the Han class and the sub is longer.

Already the PLAN (Chinese Navy?) has conducted twice the number of sub patrols this year compared to last.

I believe that the PLAN will develop these boats like they did with the Song class diesel boats.

That is, they will build a few (in this case 2) prototypes and slowly work them up to debug them.

As they learn more about them, the next few boats will be different, incorporating various improvements and fixes derived from the first boats.

A naval observer of the PLAN will note that this procedure is being done not only on the nuclear subs but also with the Yuan class and indeed with many of the recently introduced surface ships of the PLAN.

I would say that for now the PLAN is only building 2 to 3 classes of warships in large numbers

i) the 054A frigates.
ii) the 039A Song boats
iii) the 022 Fast Attack boats.