I’m sure everyone who follows PLA has seen the recent GE pictures for 094s and also clear photos of 094. I think it was a surprise for many to see 3 094 parked outside in broad daylight (about the same length and clearly larger than original 092). Personally, I’m not knowledgeable enough about submarines to provide analysis on how advanced these boats are or how quiet they are.

Therefore, I thought I’d share some comments made by certain credible poster on Chinese military bbs. Now, I’m not saying they are not necessarily true, but they have made good impressions in the past.

The points are as follows:

  • There are 3 of these 094s, but there are also another SSBN at work that does not have the humps. Apparently, that SSBN is being worked on right now at Huludao (called 094 Type 2)
  • There are at least two 092s and they will be converted to SSGNs. Each tube can hold 3 to 5 LACMs (I guess DH-10 or something like that)
  • There are 5 093s as 2005, I guess either undergoing sea tests or commissioned.
  • The first 095 or 093G is being worked on and will be launched by 2010.
  • They are expected to have 8 093/095s by 2010
  • Another 2 094s are expected by 2010

I’m not sure what we can say at the moment except that there are 094s that may or may not be commissioned. The number of 5 093s seem at least logical to give us an almost 2:1 ratio of SSNs to SSBNs (including 3 091G and 1-2 092). Huludao seems to be building nuclear subs at an extremely rapid pace. And 093 and 094 designs must be pretty formalized for them to allow so many pictures coming out.