US Naval Institute Claims China Testing Unmanned Combat Ships at Secret Naval Base
BEIJING (Sputnik) - China is testing experimental unmanned combat ships at a secret naval base off the country's northeast coast, U.S. Naval Institute (USNI) reported on Tuesday.
According to USNI News, the official media outlet of the institute, two unmanned surface vessels were spotted at a new naval base about 14 kilometers (8.7 miles) from the Xiaopingdao submarine base and eight kilometers from the major Chinese shipbuilding center Dalian.
One of the ships is described as an unmanned surface vessel, similar to the JARI vessel seen in the area in 2020. It is a small destroyer equipped with powerful weapons. The second vessel resembles a large catamaran, which also has several characteristics similar to the JARI.
11 October 2021, 13:28 GMT
The institute claimed China has repeatedly tested its unmanned surface ships at the naval pier near Dalian. The construction of the pier began in 2016 and, according to satellite images, lasted for about a year. Since then, it has been periodically used for short-term tests and exercises. Remoteness from major naval bases provides room for safe maneuvers.
According to the publication, China has a significant number of unmanned ships projects. Some of them have been presented at arms exhibitions, while others became known only from intelligence data taken from open sources.
The Chinese side hasn't commented on the claims yet.