China’s first domestically built aircraft carrier ready for sea trial; India has miles to go

Picture courtesy: Global Times 

China’s first domestically built aircraft carrier set out to sea from a port outside the Dalian Shipyard Sunday morning to begin its first sea trial, reports Global Times.

According to the report, the carrier is likely to be inducted into the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy by the end of this year.

“The aircraft carrier cast off from a port in Dalian at 5:30 am Sunday. It was assisted by several tug boats and accompanied by a fireworks display and the vessel’s full-throated horn. At 7:14 am the carrier made a successful turn and headed out to sea, disappearing in the fog at 7:30 am,” the report said.

“Weapon systems and carrier-based aircraft are unlikely to be part of the first sea trial. Combat capability tests will be carried out after the carrier is delivered to the navy. The builder needs about six months to finish its testing, which means we can expect to receive the ship by the end of this year,” an expert told Global Times.

The ship is China’s second aircraft carrier, and construction began in 2013. The country’s first carrier is the Liaoning, or Type 001, which was purchased from Ukraine and was refitted at the same shipyard in Dalian.