Russia to launch new nuclear submarine in May.
Russia"s newest nuclear powered multipurpose attack submarine the Graney (Yasen) class ?Severodvinsk? will be launched from the Sevmash shipyard on May 7, Russian newspapers report.
According to Rossiyskaya Gazeta, a shipyard spokesman says that floating out ceremony for ?Severodvinsk? has been scheduled for May 7. Construction of the submarine started in 1993, but was halted, mainly because of financial setbacks.
- This submarine should have been launched twenty years ago, when it could have become a real sensation, Rossiyskaya Gazeta writes. According to the paper, the submarine was projected already in the late 1980"s and embraced all the best know-how in the Soviet school of submarine engineering. When construction finally started, ?Severodvinsk? became the first submarine to be laid down in the Russian Federation.
As BarentsObserver reported, the submarine was reported ready for sea trials in December 2009. The crew for the submarine was established already in 2005 and arrived Sevmash in October 2009. It has been said that the submarine could be ready for missile test launching in mid-2010.
New architecture and new weapons
Vessels of the ?Graney? class will be most silent submarines in the world. According to Wikipedia, they will have a maximum speed of 16 knots surfaced and 31 knots submerged. They will be 119m long, 13,5m wide and 9,4m high. They will be armed with 24 cruice missiles of the type SS-NX-26.
The submarines will have a completely new architecture and new types of armament, Rossiyskaya Gazeta writes. The torpedo tubes and missile launchers are placed in the mid-section of the hull. In the nose section the hydroacustic system Irtysh is placed.
The new attack submarine is of the multipurpose type, that means that it combines the abilities of underwater ?hunters? like ?Gepard? and underwater cruisers like ?Kursk?, Rossiyskaya Gazeta writes in another article. The nuclear reactor is also said to be of a new, and more safe, type.
American experts believe that the ?Severodvinsk? can turn out to be the best nuclear multifunctional attack submarine in the world, in spite of the delay in construction, the newspaper writes. It is also of significant importance that in contrast to the strategic submarine ?Yury Dolgoruky?, the missile and torpedo weapons for ?Severodvinsk? have already been tested and function as they should.
Next vessel in series will be modernized
?Severodvinsk? is the first in the ?Graney? class (in Russian "Yasen" class) of nuclear powered attack submarines. As BarentsObserver earlier reported, a source in the Russian Ministry of Defence told ITAR-TASS that at least six submarines of this class will be built within the next eight years. Construction of the second submarine in the series, ?Kazan?, started in July 2009.
Compared to ?Severodvinsk?, ?Kazan? will be seriously modernized, Rossiyskaya Gazeta writes. Progress on fields like radioelectronics has gone a long way in course of the last 15 years. Another point is that Russia is trying to employ only systems and materials manufactured and assembled in Russia, in order to become less dependent on suppliers from former Soviet states.