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Type 053K Jiangdong-class Frigate

The Jiangdong-class frigates are largely identical to Jianghu-class, apart from mounting surface-to-air missiles for anti-air warfare rather than surface-to-surface missiles.

China's first vertical launch system [VLS] was anticipated for the the HQ-61 missile, scheduled to be installed on the Jiangdong FFG-531. This premier Chinese anti-aircraft missile frigate, whose keel was laid in 1970, was commissioned in 1977.

The missile system did not enter service until the mid-1980s, and turned out to be a twin rail launcher, rather than a VLS. Either the initial reports about the VLS were mistaken or disinformation, or some early technical difficulties could not be overcome. In any event, this ship was scrapped in 1994.

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