China builds mystery midget submarine

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China has apparently built a previously unseen midget submarine at its Wuchang shipyard in Wuhan.

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The imagery shows the craft berthed at the pontoon used for fitting out submarines. The midget submarine had left the pontoon by late November and by mid-January 2015, another submarine, probably a Type 041 Yuan-class boat, occupied the berth.

Based on the imagery the midget submarine has an approximate length of 35 m and beam of 4 m, suggesting a surface displacement in the region of 400-500 tonnes.

The Wuchang shipyard is at the forefront of conventional submarine production in China and has constructed most of the Type 039 Song-class and Type 041 Yuan-class boats, including the most recent variant, with its distinctive hydrodynamic fairings between the casing and the fin. It also built the world’s largest conventional submarine, the Type 032 Qing-class ballistic missile trials submarine.

Full article: China builds mystery midget submarine (IHS Jane’s 360)

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