3rd China-made Aircraft Carrier to Have Electromagnetic Catapult

China's full-size prototype of electromagnetic catapult

China’s full-size prototype of electromagnetic catapult

Chinese navy’s electric power expert Ma Weiming told CCTV10 on January 25 the electromagnetic catapult technology will replace traditional chemical energy technology within 10 years.

People are excited at his words as they believe when China’s 3rd aircraft carrier will be completed within 10 years, it will use electromagnetic catapult.

Chinese media speculates that steam catapult will be installed on China’s 2nd homegrown aircraft carrier, but so far there has been no official confirmation.

However, Ma’s revelation is official as he has been granted national science and technology progress award first class for his achievement in developing electromagnetic catapult.

According to Ma, China built a full-size prototype of electromagnetic catapult on ground and conducted tests of it for over 2 years. Ma said the tests would soon be satisfactorily completed.

The US built and completed tests of its ground prototype of electromagnetic catapult by 2010 and began to install it on its newest CVN21-class aircraft carrier the Ford in 2013. Judging by that, China will be able to begin installation of its electromagnetic catapult on its new aircraft carrier in 2020 the latest. By that time, China will be building its third homegrown aircraft carrier.

The question now is not whether China is able to build such a catapult but whether China is able to build a nuclear aircraft carrier able to provide enough electric power to operate the catapult.

However, since China has the technology for electromagnetic catapult, it has to make great efforts to build a nuclear carrier to use such catapult.

Moreover, Ma’s statement that China will replace chemical energy technology with electromagnetic energy technology within a decade hints that China will have electromagnetic artillery to substitute electromagnetic energy for the chemical energy used in conventional artillery within 10 years.

Source: mil.huanqiu.com “How great is the probability that aircraft carrier no. 003 uses electromagnetic catapult? Academy member reveals recent progress in China’s development of electromagnetic catapult” (summary by Chan Kai Yee based on the report in Chinese)


3 Comments on “3rd China-made Aircraft Carrier to Have Electromagnetic Catapult”

  1. Wei says:

    China has no experience with nuclear powered surface ships. Therefore, China cannot build a carrier with enough electrical power to drive an electromagnetic catapult in the timeframe indicated in the article.


  2. Unknown-V says:

    I believe China can make it happen.. It’s rumoured that type 002 (CV-18 & CV-19) will be installed with steam catapult. Also China has mastered nuclear reactor technology for their submarines.