Russia: Navy to Shape Aircraft Carrier Groups


Russian Navy Command made a decision to shape aircraft carrier groups which are to expand presence zone of Russian Navy in the Pacific and the North Atlantic, writes Izvestiya referring to a source in Russian Navy Main HQ. Final decision whether to build aircraft carriers is upon the President of Russia, but currently it is expected that Russian Navy would receive two carrier groups by 2027 – one at Pacific Fleet, another at the Northern one.

At present, Russian military works on technical specifications for perspective aircraft carrier. According to preliminary estimates, the ship will be nuclear-powered with a view to economy diesel fuel. As is planned, the carrier’s project will be completed in 2017 and launched in 2023. To reduce costs, the ship will be built under modular principle at two shipyards of United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) with final assembly at Sevmash (Severodvinsk).

By the time the first aircraft carrier is launched, the Navy must complete shaping of escort group. Expectedly, it will consist of missile cruisers, destroyers, attack submarines, frigates, corvettes, landing ships and supply vessels. Totally, each carrier group will comprise 15 ships except carriers. Presently, USC constructs new frigates and corvettes, designs destroyer project and plans to retrofit mothballed missile cruisers.

Apart from shaping of aircraft carrier groups, Russian Navy will have to construct new bases and a ground-based shipborne aircraft simulator in Yeisk, Krasnodar region.

President of USC Roman Trotsenko said in mid Oct 2011 that the company was developing specifications for the new carrier, and final decision would be made in 2017. Supposedly, the aircraft carrier would be laid down in 2018 and launched in five years. Earlier on, Russian defense minister Anatoly Serdiukov repeatedly stated that the ministry had no plans to lay a carrier’s keel in the long prospect. Russian vice premier Sergei Ivanov also said construction of an aircraft carrier was not provided by State Arms Program 2011-2020.

Presently, Russian Navy operates only one aircraft carrier – Admiral Flota Sovetskogo Soyuza Kuznetsov. The ship was built in 1985 under Project 1143.5 Krechet and commissioned in 1991. Kuznetsov‘s air wing consists of 12 helicopters Ka-27 and 33 deck-based fighters Su-33. It was reported in Apr 2010 that Admiral Kuznetsov would undergo overhaul and large-scale modernization in 2012 at Sevmash shipyard. The renewed carrier would be recommissioned in 2017.

Source: rusnavy, November 04, 2011