Russia: JSC Zvezdochka Ship Repair Center Starts Repair Works on Smolensk
JSC Zvezdochka Ship Repair Center (affiliate of United Shipbuilding Corporation) started repair works on Project 949A Antei nuclear-powered attack submarine Smolensk.
The sub was taken over by the shipyard in Sept 2011, laid up and docked in Nov 2011. In the dock, experts of Zvezdochka center will perform basic works on the hull. This phase will last several months. In spring 2012, the submarine will be launched and repair will continue afloat. Zvezdochka specialists will refuel nuclear reactor and carry out a number of recovery works on the sub’s onboard systems. Upon termination of overhaul, lifetime of the submarine will become 3 years longer. SSN Smolensk is supposed to return to the Navy in the summer of 2013.
SSN Smolensk is the second Project 949A submarine passing repair at Zvezdochka. In Nov 2011, the shipyard had finished breakdown maintenance of analogous submarine SSN Voronezh which is currently at her permanent basing site.
“Returning Antei subs to the ranks, we prepare not only production facilities but our staff for prospective modernization”, said Director General of Zvezdochka shipyard Vladimir Nikitin. “Experience acquired on SSN Voronezh and SSN Smolensk will be a perfect basis for further effective modernization of those and other third-generation nuclear subs, in particular Project 971 Schuka-B.
As was earlier reported, when lifetime of Project 949A submarines is expired they are supposed to be modernized and equipped with up-to-date arms systems, i.e. missile systems Onyx and Caliber. Those works will be performed by companies of United Shipbuilding Corporation. Antei-class subs of Northern Fleet will be refitted by Zvezdochka, and Pacific Fleet ones – by Zvezda shipyard.
Nuclear-powered attack submarine K-410 Smolensk (Project 949A Antei). The sub was built in Severodvinsk by Sevmash shipyard under the project developed by Rubin design bureau (St. Petersburg); joined the Navy on Dec 22, 1990; obtained the name of Smolensk on Apr 6, 1993.
According to experts, Project 949A developed in mid-70’s was a culmination of so-called ‘flattop killer concept’. Those subs were an ‘asymmetric response’ to NATO’s carrier strike groups during the Cold War. Today, Project 949A nuclear subs armed with Granit supersonic cruise missiles are the main strike force of Russian Navy capable to counter any surface targets including an opponent’s carrier groups.
Length of an Antei-class submarine is 155 meters; beam is 18.2 meters; displacement is 24,000 tons; max submerged speed is 32 knots; test depth is 600 meters; armament includes 24 launch tubes for P-700 Granit cruise missiles with firing range of 500 km, and 6 torpedo tubes.
Naval Today Staff , December 26, 2011;