Business / Aircraft carrier

Key facts of China's first aircraft carrier

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-09-27 21:31

BEIJING - China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning with a hull number of 16, entered service in the People's Liberation Army Navy on Sept 25.

The following are facts and figures about the vessel, based on reports from the Jiefangjun Bao (Liberation Army Daily), on Wednesday:

-- Liaoning is more than 300 meters long and 70 meters in width, with 10 storeys below the flight deck and nine storeys above. The overall water displacement of it exceeds 50,000 tons.

-- Liaoning's authorized number of personnel is more than 1,000, among which 98 percent of the officers hold a bachelor degree or above; commissioned officers account for two thirds of its personnel. There are female sailors and they are provided with separate living quarters.

-- Liaoning is conventionally powered (in contrast to the nuclear powered ones), designed to carry fixed-wing fighters and helicopters, and the carrier-borne aircraft will utilize a ski jump take-off.

-- Living facilities on the aircraft carrier includes a restaurant, supermarket, post office, laundry, gym, bars and garbage disposal center.

-- The delivery of Liaoning made China the tenth country and the last one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council to have an aircraft carrier in active service.

-- Liaoning is refitted from the former Soviet Union's warship Varyag.

-- After undergoing years of refitting efforts to install engines, weapons, the Varyag was fully reformed in 2011. It went on several sea trials organized by the shipbuilding company before entering service. It is expected to have more sea trials by the military after the handover.

-- Liaoning is under direct command of the PLA Navy. It will be mainly used for training and scientific research. The operation of Liaoning will not change China's national defense policy, which is defensive in nature.

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