The newest addition to the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) inventory of China is the Type 054B guided-missile frigate. The design is a dimensionally larger, more modern, and heavier warship when compared to the in-service frigate offerings available. The unfinished hull was revealed in August of 2023 while at Hudong-Zhonghua, Shanghai as it completes its construction phase. At least three other hulls are thought to be under construction marking an all-new generation of "fighting frigates" for the country as it continues to inch towards naval dominance in the Asia-Pacific region.
On paper, the Type 054B is seen as a direct successor to the aging line of Type 054A (Jiangkai II) class warships which began entering commissioned service in 2008 with some 30 total hulls completed to date (2023).
In keeping with modern naval warfare, the new vessel is a "multi-mission" design capable of operating independently or as part of the main fighting fleet with systems aboard to counter most any at-sea threat: S-Band Active, Electronically-Scanned Array (AESA) radar / X-band radar, hull and towed sonar arrays, battlefield management / fire control (Type 349A), and Electronic Warfare (EW) are all addressed in the new frigate.
The profile of the ship is consistent with modern warship design: protrusions are kept to a minimum and slab-sides provide a stealthy appearance along the horizon. The main mast is of an enclosed, pyramidal type and the smoke funnels are low-profile installations at midships. The hull line is unbroken from bow to stern and the rear section of the hull is stepped down from the hangar deck to the helicopter landing area to better serve the Harbin Z-20 ("Chinese Blackhawk") types. A second mast work is set aft of midships and integrated into the smoke funnel structure.
The weapons suite appears to follow established tradition as guided-missile frigates go: there is a 100mm turreted deck gun over the forecastle with a 32-cell Vertical Launching System (VLS) set just aft of this installation and ahead of the bridge section. The VLS will have support for various in-service Chinese Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) and Anti-Ship Missile (ASM) solutions. At midships will be 2 x 4-cell ASM launchers and a single 30mm H/PJ-11 Gatling-style Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) ahead of the bridge is expected to round out the offensive capabilities of the warship. Though not confirmed, 2 x 324mm triple torpedo tubes will most likely form a part of the armament suite.
Over the rear is the landing pad with integrated hangar facilities for supporting up to two medium-lift navy helicopters (one exposed, the other housed) used in Over-the-Horizon (OtH) work. Support for tactical-level, maritime-minded ISR / UCAV drones is assumed for this modern warship.
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.
1 x 100mm turreted deck gun over forecastle.
1 x 32-cell Vertical Launch System (VLS) supporting Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) and / or Anti-Ship Missile (ASM) solutions ahead of bridge section / aft of deck gun emplacement.
2 x 4-cell Anti-ship missile launchers at midships.
1 x 30mm H/PJ-11 Gatling-style Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) ahead of bridge section.
2 x 324mm triple torpedo tubes (assumed).
1 or 2 x Medium-lift navy helicopters supported from the stern flight deck / hangar area. Also assumed support for various tactical-level maritime drones / UAVs.
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. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content; site is 100% curated by humans.