Our Bureau
09:30 PM, April 24, 2013

The Chinese Navy is expected to receive “more than one aircraft carrier” soon, according to a senior officer with the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy.

Song Xue, deputy chief of staff of the PLA Navy, said, "The next aircraft carrier we need will be larger and carry more fighters."

Currently, China operates one aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, which was refitted based on a Russian-made unfinished carrier and delivered to the Navy last year.

The Liaoning has a full displacement of more than 50,000 tonnes. The carrier's original design allows it to carry about 30 fixed-wing aircraft. Song Xue said the Navy hoped that the next carrier could be larger to load more aircraft.

According to the Xinhua News Agency, the Navy is building naval aviation force for the Liaoning, and there will be at least two aviation regiments on one carrier, including fighters, reconnaissance aircraft, anti-submarine aircraft, electronic countermeasure (ECM) planes and rotary-wing aircraft.

The Liaoning has conducted successful take-off and landing tests of its carrier-borne J-15 fighters, the main striking force of China's carrier group.

Song said the J-15 still needs a lot more trial tests before being operational on the carrier, and there will be more J-15 fighters as the Navy conducts more test flights.