China's DF-26/DF-27 can easily destroy the 2nd/3rd Island Chain in a real time warfare.Are Chinese carriers required to go all over the world like Murica carriers?
I thought the furthest Chinese carriers need to go to will be to 3rd Island Chain in a real time warfare.
Unless they want to go to 4th Island Chain and Frisco Bay to do Chinese FONOP in Frisco Bay itself
The revelation of the Type 003 is like a psychological warfare like @hirobo2 said, it is about to demonstrate China's technological superiority over the US.
The Type 002 is the latest aircraft carrier with boilers, and I don't think the PLAN is very satisfied with it.China never built any ship power by nuclear larger than 15000 tons. I highly doubt they will do that in such a hurry.
I hope 003 is nuclear powered, and I hope technology is mature, which means there was other big ships powered by nuclear but we just don't know.
Boilers are not outdated technology, it can power any tonnage you want. Just take more space for fuel and venting.
Also, the boilers used by the Type 002 are actually inferior to the ones used by the Kitty Hawk class, and it would have struggled to power a CATOBAR carrier of the same size as the Type 002.
The earliest Nimitz class carriers actually weigh about 88k, and only the latest version has approached 100k.boiler isn't so bad. remember Kitty Hawk was steam boiler, has 20k tons less displacement (80k) than Nimitz (100k), but only carries 10-15 less aircraft. also, boiler can use cheap bunker fuel like tankers and freighters in order to share cost.
much of that extra tonnage is for shielding and containment requirements. boilers don't have the rigorous shielding and containment requirements.
Right now the Type 003 is undoubtedly heavier than the Nimitz class, and I don't know how they can suddenly pull out a super boiler that is more powerful than the one used by the Kitty Hawk class without any single trace of evidence.