Reverse engineering a flat-top?

Chinese aircraft carrier?

Eaglespeak notes a report that suggests the work being done on the incomplete ex-Russian carrier Varyag, bought by the Chinese for conversion to a huge floating casino, is not consistent with what you’d expect for such a project. The article linked seems to support the idea that the Chinese Navy intends to use the ship as a testbed and training facility for future carrier-construction projects.


  1. Well, there’s no surprise. This story has only been ‘out’ for the better part of a year.

  2. Well at least were ahead of them on this one. I also have been reading about the new Attack class of subs the Virgina and that should help equlize any chicom carriers.

  3. So what if they have a Russian CV. It’s like the saying about a monkey with a football. What are they going to do with it. When the PLAN has covered the whole deck, of their CV, with 55 gallon barrels–filled with blood (of trial and error) then…..then they might be able to conduct basic, daytime, air operations. By basic, I mean they can take off and land, during the day, without killing someone. If the PLAN wants to move to night ops, they will need to empty the first row of barrels, stack a second row on top–then fill the two layers. Then they might execute basic night operations. This would be without having weapons on the aircraft or bad weather or bad engineering or….. Once they have spilled their blood, to write their training manuals, then it on to the lessons of launch/recovery of multiple aircraft. After that, how to apply the carrier tactically and finally strategically. Then they would be up to speed for CV operations in (roughly) 1995 era. Trouble is, it would likely be 2015 or 2020 when they get there. And, as someone mentioned above ….. there is that small problem of the new Virginia class SSN. So let them spend their blood and coin. Grab some popcorn and let’s sit and watch their PLAT Camera tapes….. there will be lots of hours of ‘ooohs’ and ‘aaahs!’

  4. The Chicoms seem to be pushing the envelope in all areas of military technology. They are trying real hard to get authentic military capabilities across the board. Naturally some of these attempts will work better than others. Some will not yield as much capability thanks to unfortunate matchups with areas of American military strengths. (This would be one of those. Not just attack subs, but precision standoff weapons, superior naval aviation, and for all we know, carrier-destroying lasers. That carrier is just a huge effing target with no real defenses.) But of all these efforts, some will work. The problem is figuring out which ones. And then you have the whole ‘quantity has a quality of its own’ issue when you’re going up against the most populous nation on Earth.