China's 10,000 ton-class destroyer Nanchang now equipped with long-range missiles

The guided-missile destroyer Nanchang of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy took part in a naval parade staged to mark the 70th founding anniversary of the PLA Navy on the sea off Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province, on April 23, 2019.

Chinas 10000 ton class destroyer Nanchang now equipped with long range missiles 925 001 The Chinese Navy’s guided-missile destroyer Nanchang at Naval Parade marking the 70th anniversary of PLA (Picture source: Xinhua)

On China's Twitter-like microblogging site Sina Weibo, the PLA Navy also announced that it operates not only vessels but also submarine-launched intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) with strategic missile submarines. The missiles are the main battle equipment of the PLA Rocket Force.

Long-range land-attack cruise missiles will allow destroyers to launch more powerful precision strikes on land targets compared to main guns, which have a lower range and are less accurate, the expert said.

As China's first type of 10,000 ton-class destroyer, Type 055 has 112 vertical launch missile cells capable of launching a combination of surface-to-air missiles, anti-ship missiles and anti-submarine missiles, according to media reports.

The number of vertical launch missile cells is an important indicator of how powerful a warship is. China's Type 052D destroyer has 64 vertical launch missile cells, which is nearly half that of Type 055. America's Arleigh Burke-class destroyer and Ticonderoga-class cruiser have 96 and 122 respectively.

The Navy's Sina Weibo post did not elaborate on the designation or specifications of the long-range land-attack cruise missile and went on to introduce the Navy's J-10 and J-11 fighter jets that are also operated by the Air Force, as well as Z-8 and Z-9 helicopters, amphibious armoured vehicles and howitzers that are also used by the Army.

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