Home » News » Around the Globe » Video: China’s Carrier at Sea

Video: China’s Carrier at Sea

by John Reed on June 26, 2012

Here you have it. Some video that appears to show China’s first aircraft carrier, the ex-Soviet Varyag, steaming under her own power during her eighth sea trail that just concluded this week.

Click through the jump for the video.


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{ 73 comments… read them below or add one }

Lance June 26, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Still no planes or Choppers looks so sad w/o any.


tiger June 26, 2012 at 4:52 pm

In time Lance, In time. Ship ops first. Air ops will come later. Need to walk before you run.


Lance June 26, 2012 at 8:24 pm

Needs some MiG-29Ks like India has.


Zip June 26, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Lance, let me give you some much need help:

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Silo Grinder June 27, 2012 at 1:42 am

You seem fascinated with homosexuality. Is it a subject of devoted, deep research and personal yearning for you, or are you just a troll with a hard on for guys?


navy259 June 27, 2012 at 8:44 pm

Have you ever seen a US carrier leave home port? Looks about the same, Maybe some choppers.


Dude June 26, 2012 at 3:20 pm

Where's the launch ramp?


Max June 26, 2012 at 4:00 pm

This is a ca ca carrier!!?? ah hah aha ha ha ha hah ah ahhah ;-)


tiger June 26, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Leave humor to the pros.


Tribulationtime June 26, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Seems just like a Graff Spef (?) or a Bismark. Without a Navy to backup her, thats its a expensive Port-Queen. The only use of "Mao Tse Tung" it is prestige, like sending "Taikonautas" to do what had been do it, 60 years back during Cold War.


tiger June 26, 2012 at 4:51 pm

The PLA has quite a NAVY to back it up. Only We & Japan offer any counter.


Batman June 26, 2012 at 5:07 pm

Really? I would bet that if the French or British sub fleet decided to sink it in open ocean the whole PLA Navy could not successfully defend it, they would probably go down with it.


blight_ June 26, 2012 at 8:27 pm

If A-4 Skyhawks with Exocets could take down the RN in the 1980's before the post Cold War neutering, then the PLAN may be in for a surprise when they think they can throw their navy against a second rate power and expect an easy win.


miles June 27, 2012 at 1:18 am

Super etandards shot the Exocets though the A-4 did do some damage with iron bombs and cannon.

tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:29 pm

RN did not do all that well. They lost like 4-5 ships.

tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:27 pm

The RN has a very profesional but stretched force. Sorry, but have you looked at them lately? French are about the same. Their "fleet" is a shadow of their Cold War days. Given the current EU fiscal issues, they are not fighting anybody. The RN would be hard pressed to re do 1982 again. Let alone bother China.


Stormcharger June 26, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Sure… 62 Submarines, 26 Destroyers, 48 Frigates, 58 Amphibious ships, and more than 80 Coastal Patrol boats. Port Queen or not, they can certainly spare a few ships to protect it.


USSHelm June 26, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Just because they have 62 subs doesn't mean they defend the Varyag. Most of those subs are diesel-electric and aren't fast enough to keep up with a CVBG for a long period of time. The nuclear boats they do have are so loud they are useless,


Stormcharger June 26, 2012 at 8:56 pm

True. However they will never have to project sea power more than 1000nm from their coast and will always have the benefit of land based support as well. As well, it's not like the Chinese have never given any thought as to how their noisy, inferior submarines might be used in battle.


Hale June 27, 2012 at 3:25 pm

Didn't a Chinese sub surface right in the middle of a US carrier battle-group a few years back? They clearly have damn quite subs, either that or our guys at the monitoring station were rocking out too hard.

tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Those days are changing. They are build a blue water force. Their political interest extend beyond the Far East.

tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:31 pm

In the Shallow waters of the South China Sea, The Diesels are just fine.


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 1:49 pm

The more interesting question is if the PRC is in the process of deploying a SOSUS net. Yes, American submarines are quiet, but detection with specialized gear on non-moving platforms enhances sensitivity.

I guess the PRC may consider AIP in the near future; but range is always going to present problems. The cruising speed that maximizes range is quite a bit lower than the maximum speed needed for timely intercept of an American fleet. Then again, the better move with submarines is not always to harry the surface force, but to find and fix its vulnerable support tail.

Tribulationtime June 28, 2012 at 1:25 pm

They have a Navy, far away to have "critical mass". When we talk about C.C. Mao Tse Tung use in the Pacific, we mean a big fight, neither Jpan, South K, or Us gona fight alone. If you summ Navys from USA, J, SK, Taiwan, Australia, UK, Canada and maybe European countries you have a BIG fleet. And keep in mind that 6 warships are more powerfull than 1+1+1+1+1+1 (sinergy).


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 1:52 pm

The Royal Navy is pretty dispersed, and unlikely to leave home waters uncovered just to converge on the PRC. The same is true of the USN.

Taiwan and Aus are operating a great number of old USN hardware, which was dumped for a reason. Taiwan cannot abandon local defense in the face of the PRC, and Aus will probably opt for local defense and to cover New Guinea and SEA, at most.

It'll probably be a northern war, with Japan, South Korea and the USN. ROKN is going to operate in the Yellow Sea, as would Japan and the USN. The SCS is going to have to be fought by Taiwan and the USN, but mostly the USN.


tiger June 28, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Read Tom Clancy's SSN sometime. It is a whole USN vs PLA senario.


dubweiser101 June 26, 2012 at 6:28 pm

It isn't exactly cutting edge in terms of carrier development as far as the USN and RN are concerned, but I guess you have to start somewhere.

This ins't anything special and I don't think China sees it as such either, but you have to start somewhere. 20 years down the road we might see a competitive carrier sail out of China.


@MyBloggityBlog June 27, 2012 at 4:45 pm

It still represents a change for the Chinese military. With double digit spending increases every single year for the last twenty they're going to have to spend it on something.


Black Owl June 26, 2012 at 6:30 pm

All I see is a fat target.


Mike June 27, 2012 at 9:22 am

Ask the British if Argentina posed any threat to their ships?


tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Only because they got gunshy after the Belgrano sinking. Their airpower was more than enough of a threat. The loss of 2 DDGs, 2 FFGs, 1 LCU, 1 LSL 1, Container ship & others damaged was major. The Task force could not take losses like that long term & win.


Rob June 26, 2012 at 6:39 pm

She (Shi-Lang) must have alot issues, if they're still trying get bugs out of the power-plant. Despite her size, i'd still be little nervous flying off a deck without a catpult. Rough seas must be "fun".


Hunter76 June 26, 2012 at 7:47 pm

They're in no rush to fight the US Navy. Fat targets are near. Even Taiwan would not need a carrier. Feint and fight — elsewhere.


Danny June 27, 2012 at 1:23 am

Hope she gets butt fucked by the French Navy.


G. Thompson June 27, 2012 at 1:24 am

steaming under her own power during her eighth sea trail

What is a sea trail ? … Is that like a bike trail, or a hiking trail or trail mix?

Could you have meant TRIAL ?????


Prodozul June 27, 2012 at 12:26 pm

They’ve had worse spelling mistakes


cs4 June 27, 2012 at 1:28 am

Why are you people always wanted a war between the US and China? Body bags manufacturers had surplus inventory or just wanted friends and families to come home in one?


ConMan June 27, 2012 at 4:45 am

it's a military enthusiast forum, so you shouldn't be surprised about the comments here


jake June 27, 2012 at 7:32 am

Granted it is a military enthusiast forum about technology, but keep in mind tech doesn't fight a war by itself, especially one as big as USvChina would be. I agree with cs4. It would be a very bad war with massive casualties on either side. And before anybody comes back with a smartass remark, as a Marine 0331 I do know what I'm talking about when it comes to casualties in a war.


cs4 June 27, 2012 at 10:13 am

Jake, Thanks.
ConMan, Noted.


Vec June 27, 2012 at 11:23 am



Riceball June 27, 2012 at 12:44 pm

Nobody wants a war with China, at least nobody in a position of power in both governments. A war between the US & China would be bad for both sides not only terms of lives lost but also in terms of economic loss. Our two economies are so intertwined with each other that a major war between us would wreck both our economies, esp. China's since a war between us would effectively make their share of our debt (in terms of Treasury bonds) worthless and if their economy tanks they're going to have a lot of angry citizens who may be too angry to be distracted by a war with the US.


tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:43 pm

thumbs up!


robert June 27, 2012 at 3:16 am

i agree but once china gets its sea legs,and figures stuff.out,then makes copies of the stuff they stole or bought covertly from our contractors,they will be a power to recon with,they have all the money now,so it wont be long before parity,is achieved..and soon enough.our contractors /big business,will sell us down the river,for cash.to them,big corporations buy our govt reps,for there own benefit,imagine,what will happen,once programs get cut,they are like Judas.and will sell us out in a moment ,believe that


Rod June 27, 2012 at 12:50 pm

commas and periods. What are they??


tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Hey, we stole tons of stuff from the Germans. So we are not that different.


TonyC June 27, 2012 at 6:24 am

Clean and neat in appearance, so they aren't using it for flight operations.
US Navy carriers look rough after flight operations start and the deck gets
blasted by hot jet exhaust. This carrier is a way for China to learn how to
build carriers. Then they will build their own designs and design jets to
fly from them. In a way, it is reminescent of what Japan did prior to Pearl Harbor!


Robert June 27, 2012 at 9:12 am

RUSSIAN MADE and a start for China.
Give them a few years and they will built their own….



Richard Stalker June 27, 2012 at 10:59 am

How much do you want to bet that the first Chinese designed built carrier will be a clone for whatever the newest American carrier will be?


TomUK June 27, 2012 at 12:07 pm

You mean like the USN ‘cloned’ RN carrier innovation (steam cat., angled deck, mirror landing) ? I don’t think so, surely you just build in what works – whoever developed it initially.


Riceball June 27, 2012 at 12:52 pm

That's true, form follows function and there's only so many ways that you can build a carrier and still expect it to work effectively as a carrier. In the time since the first carrier was built only the Russians have tried to deviate from the basic plan of a carrier and the Kiev class was what resulted (ex-Varyag being a product of that class) and that was more of a missile cruiser that could carry a few planes and helos than a true carrier.


bfvifv40 June 27, 2012 at 12:21 pm

harpoon magnet!!!!


Will June 27, 2012 at 2:11 pm

yep, copy for sure, don't see US suing for patent infringement on stolen technology in this or any other administration LOL, considering China's had a taste of capitalism, like it, and too much $$$ to be made by US to go after them


Will June 27, 2012 at 2:14 pm

they just needed a platform large enough to carry back all the paper for US debt instruments they are buying….ok j/k so check fire


@MyBloggityBlog June 27, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Anyone remember when the Chinese sub surfaced right in the middle of one of our carrier battle groups? Maybe we should stop by and say hello to their "new" carrier.


Randy June 27, 2012 at 5:52 pm

I'm thinking SS Minnow. I wonder how you say "Gilligan and the Skipper too" in Chinese.


Winston ODell June 27, 2012 at 7:57 pm

Don't laugh. If it can launch aircraft, it will do damage and will ruin your friggin day. Hey guys, don't let your postings be idiotic ramblings sounding like armchair wannabe's. The Chinese are a very serious and highly capable military threat.


Victor August 6, 2013 at 4:27 pm

Nice and neat, but I think a more practical design is needed to keep the pirates from
raiding the oil tankers that Chana PRC imports thru the Straits of Mallacca and the
indian ocean. Needs catapults, Jump jets,, attending frigants, destroyers, and attack
subs to protect. as well as AWACS. Every time an oil tanker bound for China is hi jacked, it costs 20 million to get it back. Having a few of these should stop the piracy.


Aaron Evans June 26, 2012 at 9:49 pm

sorry are not wanting to rush into a war my bad


Mike June 27, 2012 at 9:26 am

1. anybody
2. afraid
3. carrier
4. India
5. maybe
6. spell check


cs4 June 27, 2012 at 10:39 am

Weird isn't it? In here every western country wants, like the US, to kick China in the head, but in the real world, those same countries, hat in hand, wants China to bail them out.


Mickey June 27, 2012 at 11:19 am

Thank you, someone had to.


Hale June 27, 2012 at 3:33 pm

Yeah, I down-voted him on spelling alone.

On topic: Despite India having ample experience operating aircraft carriers, I believe China will come out on top in their carrier race. China builds something like a third of the world's new ships, and they seem a little bit farther ahead in terms of developing an indigenous carrier. India's developing their own as well, but with all things India, there's almost always delays, unlike all things China, which are almost always ahead of schedule. (Seriously, copied tech or not, they are developing at a break-neck pace)

Now that India's economy has ground to a halt and with China's still rolling along (to the relief of the entire global economy), it's pretty much guaranteed that China will be ahead of India for quite some time. Perhaps, the 2100s will be the Indian century, doubt it though.


navy259 June 27, 2012 at 8:48 pm

True, But let us not Judge him by his spelling. Maybe he is a Chinese spy, just learning the English language.


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 1:42 pm

My mistake then.

That said, the Argies didn't have a top-rate AF and did a fair job against the RN, which notably relied on Harriers. Perhaps if they'd had legit flat-tops and a full air wing…but that's another story.


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 1:45 pm

I think that was always a reality. France's colonies were no longer as profitable, whereas India remained viable and useful to the UK until independence.

Even during the post-WW2 years I suspect it was game over for the UK and France being able to act independently on a large scale.


tiger June 28, 2012 at 1:53 pm

The had a CV. After the Belgrano sinking they fled to port. The A-4's & Super Etendards then flew from Naval Air stations for the rest of the war. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ARA_Veinticinco_de_M


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 1:53 pm


If you see kids these days, they don't type well on a full keyboard with QWERTY anymore. They are adept at pecking with two digits, since that is how you type on a smartphone.


tiger June 28, 2012 at 2:02 pm

It's been down hill since Suez in 1956. Hell, just last year the RN did not even have one ship in Home waters when the Russians crusied by a Carrier. Fought in the Med with less than a full war load for their ships. Last but not least, a Fleet Air Arm that has no jets today.


tiger June 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Quiet but as in WW2 streched over 3-4 oceans. China only needs to cover one. Now current plans to shift 60 % of the USN to the Pacific may change things…..


Riceball June 28, 2012 at 4:44 pm

As quiet as our boats are they're still nuke boats and from what I've read no nuke boat is ever going to be as quiet as a diesel running on batteries.


blight_ June 28, 2012 at 6:17 pm

That's kind of what we are told…but battery power is not something you can do forever. The other question is what does the PRC need subs for? For scouting? For surface attack (like the USN?) for anti-ship, the traditional mission?

They may opt for something different, such as using submarines as long range scouts to vector in those Assassin's Mace we are constantly told about. No desire to close in and fire torpedoes at the carrier. Something like a scouting submarine (look up the Triton's original mission).


tiger June 30, 2012 at 7:40 pm

Mine warfare is one you skipped. They can Mine the various choke points from the Bering straights to Singapore. Stopping ship traffic & naval movement is as good as a torp. They have boomers as well for that mission if they wish.


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