Well this sure happened sooner than expected: just a couple of weeks after they flipped on the lights for the first time, China's refitted Soviet hulk has made its ocean debut. This is their first claim to serious naval power.
So you want to advance the scientific output of your country—great. What's your next move? Spend a massive amount of cash repairing, refitting, and adding guns to a giant Soviet aircraft carrier? Yeah, claims China. Hmm.
China's readying its aircraft carrier debut—a gently owned Russian vessel that's being refitted for serious sea cruising. The progress has been slow (it's a gigantic aircraft carrier, to be fair), but has reached a milestone: lights on.