China is designing and building its second aircraft carrier “completely on its own” in Dalian in northeastern Liaoning Province.
SOUNDBITE (CHINESE): YANG YUJUN, Defense Ministry spokesperson
“This carrier, with a displacement of 50,000 tonnes, is conventionally powered and will will employ a ski-jump design for J-15 fighters and warplanes to take off.”
According to Zhang Junshe, a researcher at the Naval Military Studies Research Institute, aircraft carriers can help China better defend world peace and stability and play its role as a responsible developing power.
Zhang adds that future Chinese carriers will be fitted with catapults for fighter jets to take off on deck, but the process will be gradual since catapult take-off involves more complex technology.
Compared with China’s first carrier, the Liaoning, Zhang says the second carrier will have more mature technology and performance, with better coordination between its systems and high anti-interference capacity.
He says the main purpose of the Liaoning is research, testing and training, while the second carrier will be able to carry out combat operations more quickly.
Its missions will possibly include combat readiness on duty and other normal operations, including humanitarian rescue and disaster relief.