General Christopher Grady, commander of the U.S. fleet command, discussed the PLAs new aircraft carrier at the seminar on the 17th. Grady said that the PLAs new carrier will have catapults, more carrier based aircraft and stronger takeoff efficiency, but it will take time for the PLA to build a naval carrier based aviation system.
General Grady also said that the PLAs manufacturing of aircraft carriers proves that aircraft carriers are still important in the future. At present, the U.S. Navy is debating the future size of aircraft carriers, and the acceleration of the construction of aircraft carriers by the PLA will affect the subsequent development of aircraft carriers.
Source of satellite image of the third domestic aircraft carrier studied and judged by CSIS China Power Group: CSIS
Admiral Grady, no hair. Source: the U.S. Navy
According to the website of the American naval Association on September 17, senior US Navy officials are paying attention to the large aircraft carrier being built by the PLA.
We have, they want, they are building. Admiral Christopher Grady, commander of the Fleet Command in charge of global force deployment, said this on September 17 at the US Naval Engineering Institute 2020 maintenance fleet modernization seminar. They did a good job, which proves that aircraft carriers are important..
At the seminar, general Grady responded to a new analysis of Chinese aircraft carriers. The report was written by the China Power Group of the center for strategic and international studies.
The report provides new details of the PLA Navys third aircraft carrier. According to the report, U.S. experts predict that the so-called 002 aircraft carrier (Shandong aircraft carrier is called 001a by the United States, so Chinas second domestic aircraft carrier has become type 002) will be equipped with electromagnetic or steam catapults, so as to have more carrier based aircraft carrying capacity than Liaoning or Shandong.
It makes sense to me, they are a maritime power, they understand the great value of aircraft carriers and how they affect the international environment, Grady said
Grady also believes that the new carrier will give the PLA stronger combat capability: this (catapult) design will enable Chinas new aircraft carrier to carry more fighters, new fixed wing early warning aircraft, and support rapid take-off and landing aircraft, so as to expand the scope and effectiveness of its carrier based attack aircraft. Chinas second domestic carrier is expected to come into operation in 2024, and more will follow.
However, Grady said that the PLA Navy carrier air force still has a long way to go: an effective naval air force system has been established with a lot of blood, a lot of loss of life, a lot of sweat and tears. We have a huge lead now and will continue to expand it in the future. The PLA is advancing and building the ship, but it will take a lot of hard work and time to build a carrier based aircraft ecosystem for Navy aviation to give the ship vitality.
According to the Pentagons annual report to Congress on Chinas military capabilities, key features of the 002 include the presence of steam or electromagnetic catapult systems, as on the Nimitz and Ford classes.
Just as Grady praised the PLAs latest aircraft carrier, the US Navy is arguing endlessly over how many aircraft carriers the United States will have in the future.
This year, the Pentagon proposes to retire an aircraft carrier ahead of schedule and transfer the savings to other areas. However, this demand was immediately opposed by the US Congress, which pointed out that it was illegal to retire the aircraft carrier ahead of schedule.
Gradys comments come as the U.S. Navy and the office of the Secretary of defense are due to release a report in a few weeks time on the structure of the insufficient Navy, which will outline the future direction of the U.S. Navy.
But Grady did not give details about the future force structure of the U.S. Navy, saying: as part of the future force structure, aircraft carriers will remain the core of our operations.