Chinese Navy's underwater port demolition test. Via state media

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) recently conducted the first ever test where it destroyed a hostile high-piled wharf, a capability it can use in future combat for attacking enemy ports to cut-off their supply lines.

The underwater explosion test was organized by an institute under the PLA Naval Research Academy at an undisclosed naval port, government-owned China Central Television (CCTV) reported on Saturday.

Naval bases and ports are core hubs in hostile combat systems because logistics support vessels must frequently come and go between them and the frontlines to transport supplies, including munitions and fuel, Captain Zhao Pengduo, Deputy Director of the Naval Port Demolition Test Program, told CCTV . "If we can use stealthy ways, like underwater explosions to destroy the ports, we can kill off the enemy's war potentials," Zhao said.

The underwater explosives were successfully detonated and fully demolished the wharf with a powerful explosion during the tests.

Many sensors were installed on key structural points of the wharf for the test. As the explosion took place, nearly 1,000 pieces of data were gathered which were then analysed to accurately evaluate how the wharf was damaged, CCTV reported, noting that this will provide scientific support to attack hostile ports in a real war.

The test simulated real case scenarios and represented damage of different types of weapons detonated at different ranges.

“This tactic can play a significant role in many combat scenarios including countering the U.S.' naval warfare aimed at China,” a Beijing-based military expert was quoted as saying by the Global Times on Sunday. “Since the U.S. now understands its large vessels like aircraft carriers and large military facilities near China are vulnerable to attacks, it is scattering its forces to more smaller locations with the hope of making it more difficult for China to attack. However, this makes logistics support, communications and command more challenging,” the expert said further.

With ports destroyed, enemy logistics support will fail and a dispersed fighting force, which heavily relies on logistics support, will also fail, the expert said.