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Chinese Marine Propulsion

In the past ships were powered by steam or diesel engines. As the gas turbine has higher power, lighter weight, smaller size, and good starting capability, fewer accessories, high reliability and low noise, its application was rapidly extended from aircraft to marine ships.

China cannot produce high-performance marine gas turbine engines. In the mid-1990s Ukraine introduced a large thrust gas turbine unit technology, and China spent a full 10 years on localization. The propulsion system completed experiments, begun to prepare the installation of the ship, and if the follow-up imitation of developed countries in the pressure of integrated power technology route, will enable different types of prime mover-driven generating units.

As Gabriel Collins and Michael C. Grubb note : "Within the larger group of ship subcomponent technology, marine propulsion is worthy of particular note. It is an area in which Chinese industry has struggled to develop indigenous technology, but more significantly, marine propulsion is perhaps the dual-use technology most directly transferable between commercial and military shipbuilding. Commercial diesel engines are common in naval auxiliary vessels worldwide, but whereas U.S. Navy combatants are predominantly driven by high-performance gas turbine engines or nuclear reactors, Chinese surface combatants and submarines also rely heavily on diesels derived from the commercial sector.

"Medium-speed (300-1,000 rpm) diesels offer high power at a reasonable size and weight, and they typically have lower initial and fuel-consumption costs than higher-powered gas turbines. Larger low-speed diesels offer high thermal efficiency and ideal fuel economy, but their mammoth size and weight make them ill suited for naval applications (with the exception of a few large auxiliary vessels). Medium-speed diesels are further attractive for many navies specifically because of their high commercial commonality; examples are the SEMT-Pielstick PA- and PC-series diesels on fifty-three Chinese-built commercial ships and seventy-two PLAN naval vessels (including forty-seven combatants)."

" ... no indigenous marine gas turbine has been fielded to date, and the few PLAN units using gas turbine propulsion have thus far relied on imported engines. The lead unit of the Type 052 Luhu class of destroyers is equipped with two General Electric LM2500 gas turbines, but U.S. sanctions imposed following the Tiananmen Square incident forced all following Luhu, Luhai, and Luyang I units to use Zorya-Mashproekt DA-80 gas turbines imported from Ukraine."

China - Steam Turbine Propulsion

The gas turbine engine's main rivals are the diesel engine or the steam turbine. Even on a large ship, the internal space is clearly much smaller than a land thermal power plant.

Whether an aircraft carrier or thermal power plant, the direct source of power are high-pressure steam, with steam to promote the steam turbine, turbine output high speed, through the gear reduction system, and then passed to the four power shaft, large shaft driven propeller rotation, Of the anti-thrust forward. Thermal power plant high-pressure steam, do the power before the temperature up to 400 degrees Celsius, after work still have a high temperature, step-down cooling after the input city heating pipe network for winter heating. The aircraft's steam power system is a closed cycle, the bottom of a large number of condensing equipment from the hull through the water pipe to absorb a lot of water to cool, but also through the heat exchange to produce a lot of distilled water and hot water.

The main difference between conventional aircraft carrier and nuclear power aircraft carrier is the origin of high-pressure steam, nuclear reactor or fuel oil boiler difference. Otherwise, the rest of the aircraft carrier power, two types of aircraft carrier is basically the same.

China - Marine Diesel

On most commercial vessels, such as those built in China, the main propulsion engines are 2-stroke, low speed diesel engines. Auxiliary engines on the other hand are 4-stroke high to medium speed marine diesel engines with power outputs in the range of 30-3000 kW. The main engines are usually used while at sea, while the auxiliary engines can operate in all modes of ship operation during transiting, maneuvering and hotelling. Category 3 marine diesel engines range in size from about 2,500 to 70,000 kilowatts (3,000 to 100,000 horsepower).

These are very large marine diesel enginesused for propulsion power on ocean-going vessels such as containerships, oil tankers, bulk carriers, and cruise ships. Category 1 and Category 2 marine diesel engines range in size from about 500 to 8,000 kilo-watts (700 to 11,000 horsepower). These engines are used to provide propulsion power on many kinds of vessels including tugboats, pushboats, supply vessels, fishing vessels, and other commercial vessels. They are also used as stand-alone generators for auxiliary electrical power on many types of vessels.

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