China Modernizes Type 051B Destroyer’s Weapon System


China's only Luhai-class (Type 051B) destroyer, Shenzhen, has completed a major weapon systems upgrade and is set to return to operations with the South Sea Fleet. Source: Via fyjs.cn

China’s only Luhai-class (Type 051B) destroyer, Shenzhen, has completed a major weapon systems upgrade and is set to return to operations with the South Sea Fleet. Source: Via fyjs.cn

Shenzhen destroyer before upgrading. Photo: news.cn

Shenzhen destroyer before upgrading. Photo: news.cn

The anti-ship missile system retained on the Shenzhen

The anti-ship missile system retained on the Shenzhen

In its report titled “Shenzhen destroyer set to re-join China’s South Sea Fleet”, IHS Jane’s 360 gives the following description of the renovation of China’s old Luhai-class (Type 051B):

China’s only Luhai-class (Type 051B) destroyer, Shenzhen (167), has completed a major weapon systems upgrade and is set to return to operations with the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN’s) South Sea Fleet.

The most notable change is the replacement of the HHQ-7 short-range surface-to-air missile (SAM) launcher (derived from the French Crotale system) with a 32-cell vertical launch system for firing the medium-range HHQ-16 SAM.

Other changes include the replacement of the four 37 mm twin anti-aircraft guns with two Type 1130 close-in weapon systems, and the upgrade of the surface and air search radars.

The rotating planar phased-array antenna (derived from the Russian-designed radar system known as ‘Top Plate’) has been moved from the aft to the forward mast, which will remove the blind arc it would previously have exhibited.

The sixteen deck-mounted launch canisters for the YJ-83 anti-ship missiles have been retained.

The quarterdeck has been fully enclosed and new apertures in the transom are indicators that torpedo decoy and towed array sonar systems have been added. A variable depth sonar has not been installed.

Although Shenzhen is a modern 6,000-tonne destroyer commissioned in 1999, it has a steam propulsion system. It is also unusual as it is one of very few PLAN ships to have a hangar capable of embarking two helicopters.

Shenzhen previously served as the South Sea Fleet flagship and has deployed on a considerable number of overseas visits. It is not known if it will continue to operate as a command ship.

Source: IHS Jane’s 360 “Shenzhen destroyer set to re-join China’s South Sea Fleet”



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