Recently, a mysterious test photo of China’s new stealth warship has been circulated on Weibo and Twitter. Although the picture is blurred, American submarine expert Sutton believes that it is very credible. It is an ongoing R&D program of the PLA.
The Juwaite-class destroyer is an all-invisible Aegis destroyer launched by the U.S. military in 2011. In addition to installing an 80-unit vertical launch system, it is also scheduled to be equipped with an electromagnetic railgun. However, due to technical obstacles that cannot be overcome, an improved long-range attack is used instead. Land Ammunition (LRLAP).
Originally expected to produce 32 Juwat-class ships, the US Congress eventually allowed the construction of only 4 ships due to the use of too many experimental technologies in the whole ship design, which made the cost of a single ship too high.
In the past two decades, China’s shipbuilding technology has advanced by leaps and bounds, which has led to the rapid growth of the number and tonnage of the PLA’s naval ships, and actively researched and developed ships of various configurations.
According to Sutton (HI Sutton), judging from the photos of the outflowing test ship, this small stealth test ship belongs to the trimaran configuration (Trimaran), and the smaller size should be built for the purpose of hull testing. Full-scale ships will be built only later.
The advantage of the trimaran configuration is that the medium and high speed performance is better than that of the monohull and catamaran, the deck area is large, the design of the cabin space is convenient, and the stability is not easy to capsize.
But the disadvantage is that the structure is complex, the cost is high, and it is more troublesome to operate in the port than traditional ships, and due to the lack of the righting moment of the traditional single hull, if the wind and waves are too large, the ship will not be able to be turned back and will be destroyed.
Therefore, countries usually only consider the use of trimarans for large ships. For example, the U.S. Independence-Class LCS adopts the trimaran configuration, and Japan is also developing a new trimaran configuration.
At present, it is not known whether this three-body configuration test ship of the PLA will eventually be launched in the tonnage of the destroyer or frigate level, and it is also uncertain whether the development plan will continue.