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Type 917 torpedo retriever is a type of Chinese torpedo retriever in service with the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The program is one of the longest in PLAN, lasting from 1982 to 2007.

Design work of Type 917 begun in 1982 and was completed in the following year by the 708th Institute of China State Shipbuilding Corporation, which is also more commonly known as China Shipbuilding and Oceanic Engineering Design Academy (中国船舶及海洋工程设计研究) nowadays. Work on two ships begun simultaneously in September 1983 and both were completed in 1990. The reason for such protracted construction was because the design included many high tech features that was brand new to China in the early 1980’s, such as HD5L/D automatic control, hydraulic crane, centralized control of propulsion and centralized air conditioning. Once design proved to be successful, more units followed and nearly a dozen ships were eventually built in three different batches.

The production span of Type 917 torpedo retriever is over fifteen years long and numerous shipyards were involved in the construction, including Guangxi Guijiang Shipyard (广西桂江造船厂), Fujian Mawei Navy Yard (福建马尾船厂), Shanghai Shenjia (申佳) Shipyard, and Xiamen Shipyard (厦门造船厂). The third batch has propulsion upgrade to MTU 9L2027 diesel engine and increased speed to 15 kt. Type 917 series in PLAN service are designated by a combination of two Chinese characters followed by three-digit number. The second Chinese character is Yun (运), meaning transport in Chinese, because these ships are classified as transport. The first Chinese character denotes which fleet the ship is service with, with East (Dong, 东) for East Sea Fleet, North (Bei, 北) for North Sea Fleet, and South (Nan, 南) for South Sea Fleet. However, the pennant numbers may have changed due to the change of Chinese naval ships naming convention.Specification:[1]

  • Length (m): 63.68
  • Beam (m): 9
  • Draft (m): 2.8
  • Standard displacement (t): 720
  • Full displacement (t): 742.5
  • Speed (kt): 13
  • Propulsion: 8300CZ diesel engines @ 100 hp x 2.
 Type   Pennant #   Builder   Commissioned   Status   Fleet 
917 Bei-Yun 455 Xiamen Shipyard 1990 Active North Sea Fleet
917 Bei-Yun 529 Xiamen Shipyard 1990 Active North Sea Fleet
917 Nan-Yun 841 Fujian Mawei Navy Yard Mid 1990’s Active South Sea Fleet
917 Dong-Yun 803 Guijiang Shipyard Nov 1998 Active East Sea Fleet
917 Bei-Yun 484 Guijiang Shipyard Dec 1998 Active North Sea Fleet
917 Bei-Yun 485 Guijiang Shipyard Late 1990s Active North Sea Fleet
917 Dong-Yun 758 Shanghai Shenjia Shipyard After 2000 Active East Sea Fleet


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