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Ideas about "Varyag" aircraft carrier

07-27-2011 15:59 BJT Special Report:China Refits Aircraft Carrier “Varyag” |

What will be the name of China's first Aircraft Carrier? Who will be captain? When will it be tested in the water? What will the functions of the Aircraft Carrier be? Ideas about the very first aircraft carrier have never ceased to be speculated on since the proposal was first put forward. Every detail could result in an extremely enthusiastic interpretation from the media and military zealots. We try to straighten out all these ideas. let's take a look.

Guess One: Name of aircraft carrier

What will the name be of the first Chinese aircraft carrier? Netizens have put forward many answers which can be mainly categorized into two groups. First: According to the rules and regulations of naming process of Chinese naval vessels, we name aircraft carriers by means of the names of those municipalities directly under the Central Government and provinces for example, "Beijing" Aircraft Carrier。 But it was also pointed out that "Varyag" is an adapted aircraft carrier after all, those names should be held for domestic ones. The second group of aircraft carriers is named by the rules of training ships. Currently the navy has two training ships that are named after people, the first one is "Zhenghe" which is a distant-ocean training ship. The second one is "Shichang"("Shilang????) which is for the purpose of national defense mobilization. There are two ideas in terms of the naming procedures of "Varyag", the first one is to name them after the leader's name, like "Mao Zedong", the other way is to name them after ancient Chinese heroes, like "Zhen Chenggong". And the name "Shilang" previously given by the western media is considered less likely.

Guess Two: When will the aircraft carrier be used?

As the adaptation of "Varyag" comes to an end, professional terms like "launching", "sea trial" and "outfitting" become hot words. "Launching on July 1st", "Sea trial on August 1st" and "trial voyage within this year" have all become conjectures of the media. The launching process is completed in constructing docks, and it takes 3 years for large American aircraft carriers to go from being constructed to launching. The ship can be launched after the welding of the hull is completed. This phrase of "Varyag" had been completed while Ukraine was constructing it, therefore it has no problems in being launched. After the ship is launched, ship-borne weapons system and electronic devices will be installed, then comes the process of "sea trials". Sea trials are just like people taking a trial run of their new cars. During the sea trial period, aircraft carriers would run a certain distance within the offshore region in an effort to test systems like the engines. After that it will return to the port for a long period for the long "outfitting"process, that is to make a comprehensive test and adjustment of every system. Sea trials and outfitting always take a long time, the newest "Nimitz"-class carriers of the US Navy only took 2 years from sea trials to outfitting, but the French "Charles de Gaulle" took five years to finish the process.

Guess Three: Who will be the captain?

Who will be the captain of the first Chinese aircraft carrier? This is undoubtedly a very interesting question. In fact early in 2008, the "People's Liberation Army Daily" revealed it would cultivate the talents of commanding an Aircraft Carrier and organization involved in sailing it. After the ratification of the Central Military Commission, the PLA navy decided to start the first and the only "Pilot and Captain" Class in order to transform the excellent pilots to learning the surface warships command of ships on water and cultivate a group of comprehensive captains. In July 2008, the first 50 pilots went to the Dalian Navy Academy. And the previous 50 students in the "Pilot and Captain" class and the latest 50 students will definitely be candidates for China's future captain of the aircraft carrier.

Guess Four: Functions of aircraft carrier

As China's first aircraft carrier, whether "Varyag" will be the "Battle ship" or the "Training ship" remains the top concern. Military professors think, "Varyag" developed by China is an adaptation' not a creation. Functionally speaking, "Varyag" plays a significant role in the exploration and test of China's Aircraft Carrier. First it solves the problem of "possession or lacking", and for the formation of fighting capacity, it still takes long time to achieve it. "Varyag" may only be a starter, but many future miracles are out there to be witnessed.

Guess Five: What kind of shipborne aircraft on "Varyag"?

Some media suspect that, China's first aircraft carrier will be carrying the aircraft "F-15". The area of the wings are enlarged in comparison with"F-15", the design of the folded wings and shorter tail cone is also adopted. The nose landing gear resorts to the two-wheel design. In addition, China's navy already possesses Ka-28 and Ka-31 helicopters, they can also be geared onto aircraft carriers. The Chinese Navy tends to have "Fighter trainer-9" aircraft which are installed with tail hooks. They are used to train the pilots of shipborne aircraft. There is also possibility of adopted"F-10" getting on board.

Guess Six: How many aircraft carriers will the Chinese navy construct?

"Varyag" is the first step in China's aircraft carriers growing out of nothing. Then how many aircraft carriers will the Chinese navy construct? Some professors think that, from the perspective of development, one will not suffice. One cannot form the strong combat ability. According to the principle of "Three-one", usually one country would have at least 3 carriers, one used for battle deployment, one for training and one staying in port for maintenance.

Editor:Liu Fang |Source: CNTV.CN

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