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LHA Amphbious Assault Ship

Taiwan has the world's 8th largest marine corps, but ranks 13th out of the 13 countries with Landing Ship Dock / Landing Platform Dock amphbious ships. There had been no substantial discussion of Taiwan acquiring an amphbious aviation ship, but such an acquisition is plausible, given recent acquisitions in Korea and Japan, for instance. There was a Taiwanese navy LHA project from Tai-ship company in 2010. This concept from Taiwan ship company for "Shin-yen" project, one of the design style for navy, but later there was no news for this.

The navy revealed plans for a proposed helicopter carrier at a naval indigenous shipbuilding exhibition in Keelung Harbor 08 March 2017. The navy detailed its plans to build what it calls an "Amphibious Landing Helicopter Dock Ship" at a display as was part of a naval indigenous shipbuilding exhibition that opened that day on the combat support ship AOE 532 Panshi, which was docked in Keelung Harbor.

According to the specifications listed on the display, the Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) would have a displacement of 22,000 tons, have a top speed of 30 knots (55kph), and would be 220 meters in length. The helicopter carrier would be armed with an OTO Melara 76mm gun, an air defense missile system, actively electronically scanned array radar, and an advanced sonar system. The deck of the warship will be able to accommodate at least six large helicopters at the same time.

In response to reporters' questions on whether this project will come to fruition, the Navy said, "This is the Navy's 'vision,' but whether it will really be included in the shipbuilding plan, and whether it will be built in the future will depend on government evaluations."

The capacity to house large helicopters could also allow the new warship to carry other vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) warplanes, such as Harriers, Bell Boeing V-22 Ospreys, and the new F-35B Lighting II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), which the Taiwan military covets, but had yet to have the opportunity to purchase.



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