Pakistan’s New Type 054 A/P Frigate Started Sea Trials In China

Bilal Khan(Quwa) 

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@Anmdt @Bilal Khan(Quwa)

What is the reason behind PN supposedly going with CODAD in the Jinnah? Considering the Milgem/Babur comes with GE LM2500 turbine?

I think cost-control and familiarity. However, the PN hasn't frozen the J-Class' requirements yet. We could see them switch to CODAG. They're definitely interested in inducting those types of ships (e.g., B-Class corvette has CODAG).
 

Bilal Khan(Quwa) 

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@Nilgiri

The refreshing aspect of the PN is its frankness. It isn't throwing the "indigenous" card around like the Army or Air Force. Instead, it has a focus on 'original solutions' using COTS. The Sea Sultan LRMPA, J-Class Frigate, and Hangor Submarine are all great examples. They went in with a very clear focus, X capability at X cost, and you have full liberty with creativity. No one would've expected an LRMPA to emerge from the Embraer E190-E2, for example. Heck, the PN even tried getting German engines and, reportedly, fuel cell AIP for the Hangor. It didn't pan out for obvious reasons, fair, but kudos for trying. The PN isn't above trying zany ideas.

The tragedy is that this exact model would've been amazing with a real domestic industry. If the IN was issuing similar requirements, e.g., "X-capability at X-cost with COTS", the Indian private sector would have a field day. It goes to show that Pakistan does have good planners still sticking around.
 

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@Nilgiri

The refreshing aspect of the PN is its frankness. It isn't throwing the "indigenous" card around like the Army or Air Force. Instead, it has a focus on 'original solutions' using COTS. The Sea Sultan LRMPA, J-Class Frigate, and Hangor Submarine are all great examples. They went in with a very clear focus, X capability at X cost, and you have full liberty with creativity. No one would've expected an LRMPA to emerge from the Embraer E190-E2, for example. Heck, the PN even tried getting German engines and, reportedly, fuel cell AIP for the Hangor. It didn't pan out for obvious reasons, fair, but kudos for trying. The PN isn't above trying zany ideas.

The tragedy is that this exact model would've been amazing with a real domestic industry. If the IN was issuing similar requirements, e.g., "X-capability at X-cost with COTS", the Indian private sector would have a field day. It goes to show that Pakistan does have good planners still sticking around.

It is not surprising about PN.

The navy likely has a fairer share of "type 3" in what I describe here:


Type 1) This babu is just a star wars hutt and often looks the part. pushes paper, pushes pencils, finds way to use most amount of time to do least amount. Overpaid and addicted to his alloted station. Just a concentration of all the worst things a human (with power) can be.

Type 2) This babu is a mess cleaner for type ones. 10 years pass etc nothing gets done, some admin guy and yells at him eventually since army really needs something by now etc.... so the foreign import conduit gets actioned. He defends and protects type ones....and has vestigial drive to see india armed forces at least get something since india getting F-ed means he does too etc. A common minimum kind of thinking.

Type 3) The more diligent kind of babu....still driven by younger earlier impulse of patriotism...do good, and even rationality. Inevitably finds himself in priority projects like missiles, sensors and other such base input critical stuff (indian state realised at least that much - i.e what it cannot import at any reliability at all - things must be toughed out).

Rest of babus that exist are some combination of these or some "others" but these are main 3.

Over time I will have to break down parts of that larger post as relevance comes for it in other topics. Right now it comes of as bit of a rant heh.

Anyway navies in general tend to be a sweet spot (of competence, innovation etc) in defence services worldwide.....something about putting significant amount of men into one asset/vessel regularly and having their lives entrusted to each other.....as they venture out into the relative blue unknown for length of time.

This drives upward pressure to stay ship shape in organisation.

No other service does something similar to that degree and frequency and intensity and the special intensity of it found in the sub surface realm too....all driving that pressure.

Its a long long way to Tipperary....
 

Waz

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The choice for CODAD for PLAN FFGs was doctrine-driven. Not sure how that would apply to Pakistan Navy's use-case.

A good thread on the matter:


And the radar choice is also interesting, considering PLAN refuses to adopt the same for even their most recent ships:


At 28 knots maxed its comparable to other frigates of its size.

The radar is NOT the Type 382 radar, where did he get this from?
It's the highly capable SR2410C AESA radar.



Seen here on one of the Type54AP's.

1636284947353.png


Other pictures of the radar;

1636284982573.png

1636284997307.png
 

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Gessler

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At 28 knots maxed its comparable to other frigates of its size.

It doesn't tell the whole story though.

Diesels can provide as much speed as GTs, but take a lot longer to do so, hindering the ship's ability to either quickly close the gap (bringing a target into weapons range) or evading a threat (like a submarine).

The radar is NOT the Type 382 radar, where did he get this from?

It's never stated in the thread that 054A/P has Type 382. If you read the thread it has noted that both 054A/P as well as the last 2 Type 056 corvettes of Bangladesh have the SR2410C. The purpose of the thread is to highlight that even though China markets the SR2410c as a successor to the Type 382 (and Type 360) on the export market, China's own Navy refuses to adopt the same even on their latest ships which use said radars - even the Type 075 LHD commissioned few weeks ago chooses to use the legacy Type 382 instead.

A possible explanation is offered in the twitter thread:

"The most obvious would be that its relatively unproven technology & the capability gain is not that much vis-a-vis the risk, so happy to stick with Type 382? Whereas the navies of countries like Pakistan or Bangladesh may have more relaxed standards?"
 

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It doesn't tell the whole story though.

Diesels can provide as much speed as GTs, but take a lot longer to do so, hindering the ship's ability to either quickly close the gap (bringing a target into weapons range) or evading a threat (like a submarine).

And that's why warships that are primarily expected to face peer threats go with COGAG or CODAG (or some combination like CODLAG) whereas CODAD or CODLAD is sufficient for the needs of second-line vessels.

The best illustrative example is perhaps the Royal Navy. The major surface combatants that form task forces (like Type 45 and Type 26) have GTs, whereas second-line combatants (like Type 31) only have diesels.

A pretty long, but informative video about the concepts in general:

 

Waz

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It doesn't tell the whole story though.

Diesels can provide as much speed as GTs, but take a lot longer to do so, hindering the ship's ability to either quickly close the gap (bringing a target into weapons range) or evading a threat (like a submarine).

Although there is a point here, however "hindering" is a very broad term. Evasion, manoeuvring is that much more difficult due to water drag, and that's the case for all ships. Sure the ability to reach max speed quicker is advantageous ,but to suggest it gives the ship a real edge isn't right. This is because of the nature of anti-ship missiles which are more accurate and faster than ever.


It's never stated in the thread that 054A/P has Type 382. If you read the thread it has noted that both 054A/P as well as the last 2 Type 056 corvettes of Bangladesh have the SR2410C. The purpose of the thread is to highlight that even though China markets the SR2410c as a successor to the Type 382 (and Type 360) on the export market, China's own Navy refuses to adopt the same even on their latest ships which use said radars - even the Type 075 LHD commissioned few weeks ago chooses to use the legacy Type 382 instead.

A possible explanation is offered in the twitter thread:

"The most obvious would be that its relatively unproven technology & the capability gain is not that much vis-a-vis the risk, so happy to stick with Type 382? Whereas the navies of countries like Pakistan or Bangladesh may have more relaxed standards?"


Again this is HIS assumption, and he has no evidence for this.
A Chinese military blogger has answered this question which alludes to a doctrinal thinking;





The outside world has noticed that the 054A/P frigate radar system is more advanced than our own -054A frigate. For example, the former is equipped with SR2410C multi-function active phased array radar, and the latter is also equipped with Seahawk S/C frequency sweeping array three coordinates. radar. Many people may wonder why the export-oriented naval radar is more advanced than our own-use radar? The answer is that we don't need it.

Our self-use Type 054A frigate is a second-line main ship, mainly performing maritime patrols, escorting fishing, ocean escorting and other tasks. In many cases, the Type 054A frigate needs to perform tasks alone, such as the escort mission in the Gulf of Aden. At this time, the radar needs to be able to cover the predetermined airspace in a short time, so that the commander can grasp the complete battlefield situation. Although the Seahawk S/C radar is a frequency-swept array, it has two beams to achieve high and low direction coverage. In this way, the Seahawk S/C radar is not as good as the SR2410C radar in terms of a single target, but the space coverage capability is stronger than the latter. In many mission environments, the Seahawk S/C radar is stronger than the SR2410C radar. Because the 054A frigate is replaced with the SR2410C radar, it is bound to require the meter wave radar to be installed. This will affect the ship's endurance and self-sustaining ability, but it will give people the feeling that the gains outweigh the losses. Therefore, we see that the SR2410C radar has been successfully developed long ago, but this is the reason why the Type 054A frigate has not been equipped for a long time.


As mentioned earlier, the Pakistan Navy does not have high requirements for the endurance and self-sustainability of ships. On the contrary, after the Indian Navy is equipped with the BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missile, the Pakistani Navy feels like a bear. The position of the Seahawk S/C radar still uses mechanical scanning. The target cannot be confirmed when it is detected for the first time, and the second and third laps are needed to confirm it. Therefore, it is a bit weak to fight against the BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missile. However, the Type 054A frigate acts with the formation during wartime. As an inner ship of the formation, this shortcoming is not particularly prominent. The 054A/P frigate is the main ship of the Pakistan Navy, and it will face the BrahMos missile directly. Since it can be supported by early warning aircraft, maritime patrol aircraft and other ships during wartime, the SR2410C radar is of greater value to the Pakistani Navy.



Here are some more posts on the reasoning behind the radars from a major Chinese defence forum;

The fact that the 054A/P also needs to have the VHF radar also point the SR2410C doesn't have that much of a range, and its designation seems to suggest it runs on C-band which also isn't a range focused choice for a frequency band. The Type 382 is likely to have much better search range and volume than the SR2410C, but the SR2410C is also likely to have a much higher update and tracking rate than the Type 382, which points out the radars don't have the same mission profile. Even if the SR2410C is an AESA, the array itself is quite small which reduces its receive gain, and if you can run that off a Type 056 corvette, then its power requirements isn't that high either, and is comparable to the older Type 360 search radar.

I think the SR2410C is much better suited for tracking and targeting supersonic missiles that are within range of the radar, such as Brahmos, but lacks the power to detect stealthier targets at range hence the VHF radar on the back.

I do not think the new PLAN 054A will copy this layout the 054A/P has. If you are going to put an SR2410C that means a VHF radar is going to be on the back and I don't see the "wire mesh" you see on the 052DL being on top of the 054A's back hanger, and which I would expect to be filled with SATCOMs given the ever growing number of satellite constellations the PLAN is requiring their ships to link with.

You are going to need a radar that has a much better tracking ability than the Type 382, which is this radar's weakness, in addition to having pulse compression and frequency agility, also a problem with the Type 382. But you also need it to have a similar range at least. Not the least, you want the radar to be able to detect LO objects better.





The Pakistan Navy is not likely to face the same kind of aerial opposition as the PLAN. They are more concerned with the Brahmos, which is a fast mover low flyer, so you need something more optimized for tracking a fast moving target lower in the water. The SR2410C fits that bill better. Compared to the Type 382, its a better radar for tracking targets near or on the water surface, which means also means from helicopters to small littoral combat vessels.


Simply said, both radars have pros and cons, the nature of which points to these radars having a different mission profile from the other.

The only way the PLAN would accept the SR2410C is that your air defense and radar picket mission profile for the 054A would have changed (re-adapted/evolved). But if the concept or doctrine for the 054A remains unchanged, then it is not suitable.


You contrast that to the dual sided radar, each side is equal in dimension in both X and Y. This thing is meant for volume search, both high and wide, much closer to what you would expect for the Type 382. This thing is also meant to deal with high flyers, such as bombers like B-52s to HALE drones.
 

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The purpose of the thread is to highlight that even though China markets the SR2410c as a successor to the Type 382 (and Type 360) on the export market, China's own Navy refuses to adopt the same even on their latest ships which use said radars - even the Type 075 LHD commissioned few weeks ago chooses to use the legacy Type 382 instead.

A possible explanation is offered in the twitter thread:

"The most obvious would be that its relatively unproven technology & the capability gain is not that much vis-a-vis the risk, so happy to stick with Type 382? Whereas the navies of countries like Pakistan or Bangladesh may have more relaxed standards?"

I don't think it's about risk , the Type 075 using the same widely adopted radar would be the better choice from a maintenance uniformity perspective. Whatever gain the SR2410C offered is not that that important to the PLAN consider the PLAN will definitely send this ships with at least 1-2 Type 052D or even type 055s equipped with the latest type 346 radar for better coverage.

The PN using this makes more sense as it gives them the increased technological edge they need because they're supposed to be the main surface combatants of the fleet.
 

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Although there is a point here, however "hindering" is a very broad term. Evasion, manoeuvring is that much more difficult due to water drag, and that's the case for all ships. Sure the ability to reach max speed quicker is advantageous ,but to suggest it gives the ship a real edge isn't right. This is because of the nature of anti-ship missiles which are more accurate and faster than ever.

Against OTH targets & ASW threats it would matter - but it also depends upon how much area the PN wishes to operate over.

Again this is HIS assumption, and he has no evidence for this.
A Chinese military blogger has answered this question which alludes to a doctrinal thinking;





The outside world has noticed that the 054A/P frigate radar system is more advanced than our own -054A frigate. For example, the former is equipped with SR2410C multi-function active phased array radar, and the latter is also equipped with Seahawk S/C frequency sweeping array three coordinates. radar. Many people may wonder why the export-oriented naval radar is more advanced than our own-use radar? The answer is that we don't need it.

Our self-use Type 054A frigate is a second-line main ship, mainly performing maritime patrols, escorting fishing, ocean escorting and other tasks. In many cases, the Type 054A frigate needs to perform tasks alone, such as the escort mission in the Gulf of Aden. At this time, the radar needs to be able to cover the predetermined airspace in a short time, so that the commander can grasp the complete battlefield situation. Although the Seahawk S/C radar is a frequency-swept array, it has two beams to achieve high and low direction coverage. In this way, the Seahawk S/C radar is not as good as the SR2410C radar in terms of a single target, but the space coverage capability is stronger than the latter. In many mission environments, the Seahawk S/C radar is stronger than the SR2410C radar. Because the 054A frigate is replaced with the SR2410C radar, it is bound to require the meter wave radar to be installed. This will affect the ship's endurance and self-sustaining ability, but it will give people the feeling that the gains outweigh the losses. Therefore, we see that the SR2410C radar has been successfully developed long ago, but this is the reason why the Type 054A frigate has not been equipped for a long time.


As mentioned earlier, the Pakistan Navy does not have high requirements for the endurance and self-sustainability of ships. On the contrary, after the Indian Navy is equipped with the BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missile, the Pakistani Navy feels like a bear. The position of the Seahawk S/C radar still uses mechanical scanning. The target cannot be confirmed when it is detected for the first time, and the second and third laps are needed to confirm it. Therefore, it is a bit weak to fight against the BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missile. However, the Type 054A frigate acts with the formation during wartime. As an inner ship of the formation, this shortcoming is not particularly prominent. The 054A/P frigate is the main ship of the Pakistan Navy, and it will face the BrahMos missile directly. Since it can be supported by early warning aircraft, maritime patrol aircraft and other ships during wartime, the SR2410C radar is of greater value to the Pakistani Navy.



Here are some more posts on the reasoning behind the radars from a major Chinese defence forum;

The fact that the 054A/P also needs to have the VHF radar also point the SR2410C doesn't have that much of a range, and its designation seems to suggest it runs on C-band which also isn't a range focused choice for a frequency band. The Type 382 is likely to have much better search range and volume than the SR2410C, but the SR2410C is also likely to have a much higher update and tracking rate than the Type 382, which points out the radars don't have the same mission profile. Even if the SR2410C is an AESA, the array itself is quite small which reduces its receive gain, and if you can run that off a Type 056 corvette, then its power requirements isn't that high either, and is comparable to the older Type 360 search radar.

I think the SR2410C is much better suited for tracking and targeting supersonic missiles that are within range of the radar, such as Brahmos, but lacks the power to detect stealthier targets at range hence the VHF radar on the back.

I do not think the new PLAN 054A will copy this layout the 054A/P has. If you are going to put an SR2410C that means a VHF radar is going to be on the back and I don't see the "wire mesh" you see on the 052DL being on top of the 054A's back hanger, and which I would expect to be filled with SATCOMs given the ever growing number of satellite constellations the PLAN is requiring their ships to link with.

You are going to need a radar that has a much better tracking ability than the Type 382, which is this radar's weakness, in addition to having pulse compression and frequency agility, also a problem with the Type 382. But you also need it to have a similar range at least. Not the least, you want the radar to be able to detect LO objects better.





The Pakistan Navy is not likely to face the same kind of aerial opposition as the PLAN. They are more concerned with the Brahmos, which is a fast mover low flyer, so you need something more optimized for tracking a fast moving target lower in the water. The SR2410C fits that bill better. Compared to the Type 382, its a better radar for tracking targets near or on the water surface, which means also means from helicopters to small littoral combat vessels.

Simply said, both radars have pros and cons, the nature of which points to these radars having a different mission profile from the other.

The only way the PLAN would accept the SR2410C is that your air defense and radar picket mission profile for the 054A would have changed (re-adapted/evolved). But if the concept or doctrine for the 054A remains unchanged, then it is not suitable.


You contrast that to the dual sided radar, each side is equal in dimension in both X and Y. This thing is meant for volume search, both high and wide, much closer to what you would expect for the Type 382. This thing is also meant to deal with high flyers, such as bombers like B-52s to HALE drones.

The explanation makes sense as to why PLAN would stick with 382, thanks.
 

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Evasion, manoeuvring is that much more difficult due to water drag
I would like to point out, diesels or GT does not much matter at these point. Both of the engines (talking for high speed diesels that commonly used on warships) provides power output in a similar instance, even diesels can be easily cold-started and warmed up to provide their maximum output.
GT usually helps the installed power to be overshoot (usually by +4 MW) without sacrificing additional space like diesel thus gives an upper hand while towing sonars (yet these sonars are usually towed at relatively lower speeds).
In the end it is about 1. Navy's preference, 2. Budget and 3. Space available in the ship. First one can override the rest. Not really related to acceleration, maneuvering or anything else since these are not only linked to the type of installed engine but propeller and rudder arrangement.
 

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Pakistan Navy Commissions New Type 054 A/P Frigate ‘PNS TUGHRIL’​

On January 24, the Pakistan Navy commissioned the first Type 054 A/P class frigate, PNS TUGHRIL, at the Pakistan Navy Dockyard in Karachi.​

Naval News Staff 24 Jan 2022
The commissioning ceremony hosted by Pakistan Navy in Karachi was the second for Type 054A/P frigate PNG TUGHRIL (F-261). The first ceremony took place on 8 November at China’s Hudong Zhonghua Shipyard as part of the frigate’s delivery. The second ceremony drew a large crowd, including Pakistan’s President Dr. Arif Alvi, who participated as Chief Guest.

According to a statement posted on the Pakistan Navy’s social media accounts, President Alvi stressed the need of having a well-equipped fleet to protect sea borders in severe environmental conditions.



PNS TUGHRIL is the first of four frigates of Type 054 A/P being built for the Pakistan Navy. She was launched in August 2020, and the Chinese shipyard completed the process in just 14 months. The new frigate is named after “Tugrul the First,” one of the founders of the Seljuk Empire, which governed modern-day Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey between the 11th and 14th centuries. The Type 054A/P will be Pakistan Navy’s most capable warship to date.

Pakistan signed an initial contract for the delivery of two Type 054 A/P frigates in 2017. An additional contract for two more ships was announced in June 2018. According to the contract, all four ships are built in China and the first two are expected to be delivered to the customer by year-end.

During the occasion, the Pakistan Navy also welcomed ten second-hand Sea King helicopters acquired from Qatar.

Pakistan Navy Commissions New Type 054 A/P Frigate ‘PNS TUGHRIL’


Sea King helicopters inducted to Pakistan Naval Air Command (Pakistan Navy photo)

The Pakistan Navy is currently undertaking an important renewal of its fleet, with the procurement of several modern platforms: In addition to these frigates from China, Pakistan will also commission new corvettes from Turkey and OPV from the Netherlands. It is also modernizing its submarine force. In 2016, Pakistan agreed to pay China $5 billion for the acquisition of eight Chinese Yuan-class type-041 diesel submarines by 2028 in order to shift the force balance with its archrival India.

About Type 054A and Type 054A/P frigate​

Pakistan Navy Commissions New Type 054 A/P Frigate ‘PNS TUGHRIL’


First in class Type 054 AP for Pakistan Navy in mid June 2021.

The Type 054A is a multi-role frigate and is recognized as the backbone of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) fleet of surface combatants with 30 vessels in commission. They have a length of 134 meters, a beam of 16 meters for a displacement of 4,000 tons. They have a crew complement of 165 sailors and are fitted with:
  • a H/PJ-26 76mm main gun
  • 2×4 CM302 anti-ship missiles
  • 32x VLS cells for HQ-16 surface to air missiles
  • 2x Type 730 30mm CIWS
  • 2x Triple Torpedo launchers
In PLAN service, those frigates feature a Type 382 radar which shares a close resemblance with the Russian MR-710 Fregat radar. Unlike the Pakistan Navy variant – whose first ship-in-class is fitted with an SR2410C radar – the Type 054A in Chinese Navy service does not feature a long-range/metric wave radar.

 

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