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Chinese PLA Navy's Type 055 destroyer Xianyang is now operational.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to information published by Global Times on February 18, 2024, the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy has successfully brought its eighth Type 055 large destroyer to operational readiness.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 PLA Navy's Type 055 destroyer Wuxi. (Picture source: China MoD)

Two Type 055 destroyers, the Xianyang and Yan'an, undertook combat readiness training missions under the PLA Southern Theater Command in a classified location within the South China Sea.

The exercise saw the Xianyang engaging in simulated engagements against aerial targets, whereas the Yan'an practiced missile strikes on maritime threats.

Type 055 destroyers

Technically, the Type 055 class destroyers are equipped with a sophisticated array of sensors and weapons systems. They are powered by four 28 MW QC-280 gas turbines in a combined gas and gas arrangement, enabling a top speed of around 30 knots.

The ships boast advanced electronic warfare and countermeasures, including dual-band radar systems for enhanced detection and tracking capabilities, particularly against stealth targets and for anti-satellite operations.

The radar system comprises four S-band Type 346B Dragon Eye active electronically scanned array (AESA) panels and smaller X-band panels, providing significant advantages in surveillance, target acquisition, and missile guidance​​.

Armament-wise, the Type 055 is formidable, featuring 112 vertical launch system (VLS) cells for a mix of surface-to-air, anti-ship, land-attack cruise missiles, and anti-submarine torpedoes.

This capacity surpasses that of many contemporary destroyers, granting the Type 055 the ability to engage a wide range of targets from air, surface, and subsurface domains.

The ships also carry a 130-mm main gun, close-in weapon systems (CIWS) for point defense, and can accommodate two maritime helicopters for additional ASW and surface warfare capabilities​​​​.

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