Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Arms Warships & Submarines Military Pay Scale Military Ranks

CNS Type 091 (Han)

Nuclear-Powered Attack Submarine (1974)

Naval Warfare

1 / 1

Jump-to: Specifications

The Han became the first nuclear-powered submarine for the PLAN - better known as the Chinese Navy.

Authored By: Jerry Potts, 173rd Airborne (RET) | Last Edited: 12/31/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.
The Han was the first nuclear-powered submarine designed and built by the People's Liberation Army - Navy (PLAN) of China. The Han was an original design by the Chinese Navy that used the "Albacore" hull SSN outline with the diving planes being mounted high and forward on the sail. The Albacore shape is shorter and fatter than earlier boats using conventional model patterns that were longer and thinner but still continued to be deployed at the time. The Han used a single shaft propeller, a major stealth upgrade for the PLAN who, until that time, purchased and used ex-Soviet diesel-electric submarines utilizing twin shaft propellers.

The specifications displayed below are for the first two boats placed in service - #401 in 1974, and #402 in 1980. The remaining three boats #403 in 1984, #404 in 1988 and #405 entered service in 1991 and all served in the North Sea until at least 2002. The last three launched had upgrades that included more advanced modernized equipment and weapons and was increased in length by 26' 3".

In October 1994 the USS Kitty Hawk was on station in the Yellow Sea with her battle group. One of her S-3 Viking patrol aircraft detected a Han-class boat shadowing the carrier from 450 nm away at periscope depth in international waters. The submarine closed to within 20 nm before she turned away. It was obvious the PLAN wanted the sub to be seen by CV-63 Kitty Hawk as a notice to the world's most powerful navy that a new player had entered the Asia-Pacific theater.

The Chinese Navy has been growing in force and capability ever since - driving a new Asian arms race in the region and drawing the attention of Washington.


Service Year

China national flag graphic

In Active Service.


ChangZheng 1 (#401); ChangZheng 2 (#402); ChangZheng 3 (#403); ChangZheng 4 (#404); ChangZheng 5 (#405)

National flag of China China
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Submerged Attack
Traveling under the surface to search, track, and / or engage or reconnoiter areas.
Maritime Patrol
Active patroling of vital waterways and maritime areas; can also serve as local deterrence against airborne and seaborne threats.
Fleet Support
Serving in support (either firepower or material) of the main surface fleet in Blue Water environments.

295.4 ft
90.04 m
29.6 ft
9.02 m
24.4 ft
7.44 m

Installed Power: 1 x Pressured Water Nuclear Reactor; 2 x Steam Turbines developing 12,000 horsepower to 1 x Shaft.
Surface Speed
25.0 kts
(28.8 mph)
Submerged Speed
30.0 kts
(34.5 mph)
Essentially Unlimited

kts = knots | mph = miles-per-hour | nm = nautical miles | mi = miles | km = kilometers

1 kts = 1.15 mph | 1 nm = 1.15 mi | 1 nm = 1.85 km
6 x 21" (533mm) Bow Tube Launchers (some with 4 bow and 2 stern tubes)
YJ801Q surface-to-surface missiles
36 x mines in place of torpedoes

Supported Types

Graphical image of an aircraft aerial torpedo
Graphical image of a naval mine

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)

Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2

Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective naval campaigns / operations / periods.


Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2022 Military Pay Scale Army Ranks Navy Ranks Air Force Ranks Alphabet Code DoD Dictionary American War Deaths French Military Victories Vietnam War Casualties

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com.

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org, the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft, and SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane.

Facebook Logo YouTube Logo

www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-