Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke: A Brief Destroyers Comparison

Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke

Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke

The rivalry between China and the United States is well-known in terms of naval power. Specifically, the comparison between China’s 052D guided missile destroyer and America’s Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer has sparked considerable interest. This article delves into the key distinctions and similarities between these two formidable naval vessels.

Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke
USA’s Arleigh Burke

Quantity and Service History

The 052D guided missile destroyer, a cornerstone of the Chinese Navy, boasts a fleet of 25 ships. In contrast, the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, a stalwart of the US Navy, currently boasts a fleet of 72 operational vessels. This numerical disparity underscores the US Navy’s advantage in fleet size.


Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke
China’s 052D

When it comes to specifications, the 052D guided missile destroyer has a full-load displacement of 7,500 tons, whereas the Arleigh Burke class has a displacement of 9,300 tons. Consequently, the Arleigh Burke-class enjoys a tonnage advantage, which may translate into superior stability and load capacity in certain scenarios.

Vertical Launch Units

Regarding vertical launch units, the 052D is outfitted with 64, while the Arleigh Burke class boasts 96. This discrepancy implies that the Arleigh Burke-class can carry a larger number of missiles, potentially conferring a significant firepower advantage in combat situations.

Naval Guns

The 052D features a 130mm naval gun, whereas the Arleigh Burke-class is equipped with a 127mm naval gun. While the difference appears marginal, the performance and accuracy of naval guns are pivotal in determining firepower output during naval engagements.

Close-In Defense Systems

Chinese 052D vs American Arleigh Burke
20mm phalanx close air defense weapon system

The 052D utilizes the Type 1130 close-in defense gun, while the Arleigh Burke-class employs the Phalanx air defense system. Both systems possess unique strengths and are adept at countering incoming threats in diverse scenarios.


In summary, the 052D guided missile destroyer and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer exhibit notable differences in tonnage, firepower, and equipment. However, determining superiority hinges on various factors, including overall combat capability, the comprehensive effectiveness of ship systems, and combat strategies.

Ultimately, these two vessels represent the pinnacle of naval technology and play a crucial role in safeguarding the maritime interests of their respective nations.