Type 052D Class Guided Missile Destroyer of PLA – Luyang III Class Destroyer
Type 052D class guided missile destroyer of people liberation army of china are general purpose destroyers that can deal with air, surface and underwater threats.
The Type 052D class is referred as Chinese Aegis. It is known in the West as Luyang III class. It is a follow-on to the previous Type 052C (Luyang II) class destroyers. The Type 052D class warships are general-purpose destroyers that can deal with air, surface, and underwater threats. A number of Type 052D destroyers are being built at a rapid pace for the Chinese Navy by two different shipyards. The first vessel entered service in 2014. In
2019 China built more of these destroyer in one year, than some navies have in their entire inventory. Latest Type 052D class destroyers are built to improved standard and are slightly bigger.
Type 052D Class Destroyer
The Type 052D class is among the World’s biggest and most capable destroyers. It follows the lines of the previous Type 052C class, but have improved weaponry and pack a heavier punch. These guided missile destroyers are equipped with advanced radar and two 32-cell Vertical Launch Systems (VLS) for various missiles. Still though these are general-purpose destroyers, rather than specializes anti-air warfare vessels. It seems that these warships have capabilities similar to those of the US Aeleigh Burke Class general-purpose destroyers.
Type 052D destroyers use a Type 346A phased array radar. It is a further development of the Type 052C radar. The new radar is larger and has more transceivers. As a result it has a longer detection and tracking range. This radar was first observed in 2012 on a Bi Sheng weaponry trial ship. In function it is similar to the US SPY-1 Aegis radar. It can detect air targets at significant ranges and track numerous targets simultaneously.
It looks like that it can even detect and track ballistic missiles, though it it is unknown it these ships carry any anti-ballistic missiles in their weaponry. Some sources report that the Type 052D class warships are also fitted with a newest Chinese data link. This secure tactical data system is used for communication with other naval assets.
The two 32-cell VLS can hold and launch different types of missiles. These include surface-to-air missiles, cruise missiles, anti-ship missiles and anti-submarine missiles. It differs from the VLS system used on the previous Type 052C class and resembles a US Navy’s Mk.41 VLS. The Type 052D class has superior offensive capabilities. In these terms it even outperforms many Western destroyers.
These Chinese destroyers have a single 130 mm main gun. The previous Type 052C class ships have a smaller 100 mm main gun.
There is also a HHQ-10 launcher, packed with short-range air defense missiles.
Last ditch defense is provided by a seven-barreled 30 mm Close-In Weapon System (CIWS). It seems that starting with the 9th hull destroyers will be fitted with improved eleven-barreled 30 mm CIWS. It can fire at a rare of a whooping 10 000 rounds per minute. It is claimed that it can intercept incoming anti-ship missiles up to a speed of Mach 4 with a 96% success rate. So far these eleven-barreled CIWS were fitted on Chinese Liaoning aircraft carrier and latest Type 054A Class frigates.
For anti-submarine warfare there are torpedo tubes and anti-submarine rocket launchers.
The Type 052D class warships have a hangar for a single helicopter. These destroyers can accommodate a Kamov Ka-28 (export version of the Ka-27) or Harbin Z-9C. However most other warships of similar size and displacement typically can accommodate two helicopters.
The Type 052D class warships are operated by 280 crew members.
These destroyers have a Combined Diesel or Gas (CODOG) type propulsion system with two gas turbines and two diesel engines. Diesels are used for economical low-speed cruising, while the gas turbines kick in when high speed cruising is required. Maximum speed is 30 knots.
The Type 052D class destroyers are being supplemented by larger and even more technologically advanced Type 055 class destroyers.