Taiwan will Build its first Indigenous ‘Landing Platform Dock’ Warship
The Republic of China (Taiwan) will build its first Landing Platform Dock (LPD) warship for the Republic of China Navy (ROCN) and recently issued a request for tender for this amphibious vessel whose role is to land assault troops on enemy shores.
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Bids were solicited last week from Taiwanese shipbuilders. The government has set aside $207 million up to 2021 to finance the project, including $42.75 million in 2017.
A landing platform dock, also called an amphibious transport dock, embarks, transports and lands a landing force for expeditionary warfare missions.
ROCN wants local shipbuilders to construct two of the LPDs, with the first to enter service by 2021. The ROCN LPDs will support amphibious operations and transport tanks and other military equipment.
They will also serve as hospital ships and will be used for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions in peacetime.
ROCN wants an LPD with a length of 502 feet and a displacement of 10,000 tons. The LPD will be armed with a 76 mm main gun and will be protected from close-in aerial threats by a Phalanx close-in weapon system or CIWS.
Medium-range anti-aircraft defense will be provided by the indigenous TC-2N (Tien-Chien II) surface-to-air missile (SAM) system. The LPD will have a top speed of 21 knots and a range of up to 7,000 miles.
The primary onboard sensor will be a new 3-D radar most likely based on the Taiwanese CS/MPQ-90 Bee Eye. The LPDs will carry an advanced command, control, communications and intelligence system.
The ship's well dock will be able to support various landing craft and the AAV-7 amphibious assault vehicle. The warship will have helicopter landing facilities but there will be no hangar for an organic helicopter capability.
Taiwan has an ambitious indigenous shipbuilding plan as it copes with a feared invasion by mainland China. It has 12 new shipbuilding and force modernization programs covering a 23-year period from 2016.