June 08, 2004
On June 3rd, Wuhan Shipyard held a public celebration in honor of its 75th anniversary. At this ceremony, a PLAN (Chinese navy) Type 039 (code name Song) class submarine was displayed which, it is said, had Air Independent Propulsion (AIP). This came as a shock to American naval intelligence analysts, who, until this announcement, were saying that the Chinese had no AIP, and were not likely to have it for 5-10 years. This new Song class submarine variant is wider at the engine section, indicating installation of a new propulsion system. The Chinese say it is AIP, a technology that allows a submarine to stay underwater for weeks at a time, and is quieter than nuclear propulsion.
Posted by Ghost of a flea at June 8, 2004 08:38 AM
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