A China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) spy ship is reportedly snooping on the U.S-Australian joint Talisman Sabre 2017 military exercise.
Exercise Talisman Saber is a biennial joint Australia-United States military exercise which involves joint exercises performed by the Australian Defence Force and the United States Military.
The exercise is conducted across six locations in northern and central Australia, the Coral Sea, and in Honolulu, Denver, and Suffolk, Va., though the bulk of the exercises are concentrated at the Shoalwater Bay Military Training Area and other locations in northern and central Australia and Australia’s territorial sea and exclusive economic zone.
According to the twitter user, rajfortyseven, the ship is a Type 815 class electronic surveillance ship.
— RAJ () July 21, 2017
Earlier there were reports of a Chinese Navy spy ship being spotted off the Alaskan coast and that it may have observed a recently conducted THAAD missile defense test. U.S. Navy Captain Scott Miller, a spokesperson for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), confirmed the presence of the ship and said it is believed to be a “communications” or “intelligence” vessel, according to the report.
Earlier this month, Chinese ships carrying military personnel and equipment to its first overseas military base in Djibouti departed Zhanjiang in southern China’s Guangdong Province.
These overseas deployment of warships and electronic surveillance ships are seen as significant displays of China’s expanding naval capabilities.
Type 815A electronic surveillance ship:
Type 815 electronic surveillance ship area class of electronic surveillance ships in service with China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN).
In addition to collecting electronic intelligence, this class is also tasked to perform ballistic missile tracking.
After year 2000, an improved version appeared, designated as Type 815G, and the most obvious external visual difference between Type 815G and earlier Type 815 is that the former has a different mast somewhat similar to a pagoda shape, and the sheer line is curved at a greater angle.
In January 2017, an improved Type 815G entered service with Chinese navy. Designated as Type 815A, this further improved Type 815 can be visually distinguished from earlier Type 815G in the radome above the pilothouse: the radome of Type 815A is a cylinder with flat top surface, while the top of cylinder radome of earlier Type 815G has a semi-sphere.
There are currently six ship of this class in service with PLAN.