Shanghai [China], November 13 (ANI): Construction on China's third aircraft carrier, Type 003 is progressing steadily and is expected to be launched by February next year, according to a US-based think tank.
Citing a report by the Washington-based, Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Radio Free Asia reported that commercial satellite imagery of Jiangnan Shipyard in Shanghai signifies the installation of the vessel's main external components. CSIS further mentioned that the construction and installation of the aircraft carrier are nearly completed.
As reported by Radio Free Asia, the CSIS researchers mentioned that in past few weeks the visual appearance of the aircraft has gone through a "significant shift." The Radio Free Asia (RFA) quotes CSIS researchers as saying, "the initial installation of major internal components has been completed."
The recent construction of Type 003 aircraft carrier is following other Chinese aircraft, named Liaoning and Shandong. Both the aircraft carriers are in operation. Liaoning, the first Chinese aircraft carrier bought from Ukraine in 1998 was commissioned in the year 2021, while the second carrier- Shandong in 2019.
The type 003 aircraft carrier has different features compared to the last two carriers including catapult systems, which purposely aids in aircraft launch from the ship. In a similar context, Radio Free Asia quotes CSIS researchers as saying, "a major leap forward for the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN)." The CSIS's report authors foresee that though the Type 003 launch could take place in nearly three to six months, there are technical issues that require the attention of developers.
RFA quoted the report as saying, "Even after launch, it will still be years before the Type 003 is commissioned into the PLAN and achieves initial operating capability." (ANI)