UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) – China is modernizing its navy, including changing its first aircraft carrier, Liaoning, to look like its second such vessel, Type 001A.
China’s Liaoning aircraft carrier is undergoing a large-scale facelift, which has been underway for the first time since it took office in 2012, local media reports said.
According to The South China Morning Post newspaper, the aircraft carrier has seen its radar and control center replaced. The rest of the bridge is covered with scaffolding.
Une vue directe qui permet de voir les travaux de modification sur la passerelle aviation du porte-avions Liaoning (en arrière plan à droite) pic.twitter.com/74cvZAaVPb
— East Pendulum (@HenriKenhmann) August 27, 2018
The first Chinese Liaoning aircraft carrier was built on the basis of the Varyag cruiser bought from Ukraine in 1998 in an uncompleted state of construction.
The work of its transformation into aircraft carriers began in 2005 and after six years, it underwent its first tests at sea to finally equip the Chinese Navy in September 2012.
In November 2012, it was announced that a fighter boarded J-15 had managed to land on the deck of the ship.
— Matias E. Ruiz (@MatiasERuiz) August 28, 2018
The newspaper quoted military expert Liao Ze as saying that the new construction will be similar to that for the Type 001A aircraft carrier, developed and built entirely in China.
The Type 001A aircraft carrier was launched in April 2017. The vessel, 315 meters long and 75 meters wide, weighs 70,000 tons capable of traveling at a cruising speed of 31 knots.
According to Chinese media, the ship can accommodate up to 36 J-15 fighters.