Type 003 Aircraft Carrier

The Type 003 is the People’s Republic of China's (PRC) second indigenously produced aircraft carrier. The only ship of the class is currently being laid down in dry-dock.

  • Country: People's Republic of China

  • Entered Service: NA

  • Crew: NA

  • Deployment Endurance: NA

  • Fixed Wing Aircraft: J-15T Carrier Fighter, KJ-600 Airborne Early Warning Aircraft

  • Helicopters: Z-20F Seahawk

  • Armament: NA

  • Max Speed: NA

  • Propulsion: Conventional

  • Length: NA

  • Draught: NA

  • Beam: NA

  • Displacement (Full Load): 85,000 Tons (Approximate)


The Intelligence Ledger assesses that the Type 003 will carry the Shenyang J-15T carrier-based multirole fighter, while also boasting a new airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft, the Xi’an KJ-600.

Launch & Recovery Systems

Although the Type 003 incorporates design features from its older siblings, the class is expected to bring China into a new generation of naval power and greatly enhance the PRC’s ability to project influence overseas. Slated to displace nearly 85,000 tons, the 003 is a true behemoth. The new class of carriers are expected to utilize an electromagnetic catapult (EMALs) or steam catapult launch system and catapult-assisted takeoff barrier arrested recovery (CATOBAR) system, dramatically improving the attached air wing's fuel efficiency and load capacity.


The Chinese government has proven remarkably adept at shielding design features from both the United States government and analysts, frustrating leaders and journalists from across the globe. As such, it remains a mystery as to which conventional propulsion system the vessel will utilize.