|The photo, taken on Dec. 12, 2015, shows the naming and commissioning ceremony held in a naval port in Sanya, Hainan Province, for the new guided missile destroyer, Hefei. The destroyer, which is China's third 052D guided missile destroyer, started its service in the PLA Navy's South China Sea Fleet.|
The South China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy welcomed a new guided missile destroyer, Hefei, on Dec. 12, 2015. The destroyer’s naming and commissioning ceremony was held at a naval port in Sanya in south China’s Hainan Province on Sunday morning.
This new warship is the third 052D guided missile destroyer to be independently developed and built by China. Together with the Kunming (Hull No. 172) and the Changsha (Hull No. 173), all three of China’s 052D guided missile destroyers belong to the South China Sea Fleet. The destroyers specialize in regional air defense and attacking surface targets.
According to Du Wenlong, a researcher from the PLA’s Academy of Military Sciences, more complex combat environments will surely provide opportunity for the three 052D warships to prove their combat effectiveness. These environments will also allow their problems and shortcomings to be exposed and corrected as soon as possible.
Du said that 052D guided missile destroyers are capable of integrating air defense, as well as anti-ship, anti-missile and anti-submarine defense. It is therefore the most suitable warship to join China’s aircraft carrier battle group.