A Borey-class SSBN (photo: Sevmash Press-Service)
Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC or OSK) is reportedly experiencing a shortage of funding for Borey-class SSBN Knyaz Oleg. OSK President Aleksey Rakhmanov told RIA Novosti on November 16, “Everything depends on issues of the shortage of financing which has somehow formed for us. We hope that [the launch of Knyaz Oleg] will be on schedule.”
Rakhmanov reportedly told the official news agency that the schedule for launching Knyaz Oleg has been pushed back several times.
Knyaz Oleg is the fifth Borey SSBN overall, and the second Borey-A boat. Like the first three Borey ballistic missile submarines, the Borey-A is expected to carry 16 Bulava SLBMs.
First-of-class Yuriy Dolgorukiy is assigned to the Northern Fleet. Aleksandr Nevskiy and Vladimir Monomakh are part of the Pacific Fleet.
Like Knyaz Oleg, unit four — Knyaz Vladimir — the first Borey-A is also destined to reinforce the Russian Pacific Fleet’s strategic nuclear force.
Rakhmanov’s public cry for more money is somewhat unusual and harks back to 2011 when OSK railed at the MOD for adequate financing to produce modern nuclear submarines.
Russia planned to have eight Borey boats in its order-of-battle by 2020. But with Sevmash taking six, seven, or eight years to lay down, launch, and commission them, Knyaz Oleg might be the last to reach the navy this decade. And Rakhmanov pretty clearly linked money to sticking to his SSBN production schedule.
Andrey Dyachkov (photo: RIA Novosti / Sergey Safronov)
As General Director of both Sevmash and TsKB MT Rubin, Andrey Dyachkov’s a pretty significant individual when it comes to submarines. What follows are highlights from his RIA Novosti interview last Friday.
Some blurbs have been published, but one frankly hasn’t had time to see if they captured the importance of what Dyachkov said. Hence this summary. It has less elegance (or perhaps fluff) than you may be accustomed to reading on these pages.
Dyachkov said the following:
- Sevmash and the Defense Ministry signed a contract for the modernized Yasen, or Yasen-M this year. It will be five units; Severodvinsk plus five. Severodvinsk will be delivered next year; there were problems with some components obtained from suppliers and the Kalibr missile system needs to complete state testing. About six months are needed for all this.
- This year’s huge contract problems were a result of a changed Defense Ministry approach toward price formation Sevmash wasn’t ready for. But times have changed, and Sevmash recognizes money has to be used more effectively, and ways have to be found to cut production expenditures.
- Rubin has a contract to design the modernized proyekt 955, Borey, the Borey-A. The contract should be signed by early 2012. The lay-down of the first improved Borey will happen next year, and Saint Nikolay is still the working name for the first unit. No word from the Sevmash chief on the final number of boats until after the contract is signed. They’ve started laying down Saint Nikolay, but the official ceremony’s still to come.
- Seventy percent of sub costs are reportedly to pay suppliers. The main thing is getting them to reduce the cost of their products. The Defense Ministry might even consider foreign component suppliers for some SSBN components.
- Sevmash will take on construction of two diesel-electric proyekt 636 from Admiralty Wharves. This will lighten the workload of the latter, and use excess capacity at the former.
- Severnoye PKB has a contract to figure out how to modernize Kirov-class CGN Admiral Nakhimov (proyekt 1164, Orlan). First and foremost, it needs new missiles (Kalibr and Oniks) to replace its Granit. They are talking only about Nakhimov at this point.
- Sevmash won’t be repairing CV Admiral Kuznetsov in 2012. The shipyard is prepared to build a future carrier.
- Modified Typhoon-class SSBN Dmitriy Donskoy will be kept active at the White Sea Naval Base for sub-on-sub trials of new boats. Northern Fleet subs won’t be diverted for this task.
- KB Malakhit has developed repair and modernization plans for the Akula-class (Proyekt 971, Bars). Money’s been allocated and Zvezdochka will do the work.
- Russia may offer up the Amur-1650 diesel sub in next year’s Indian tender. It could have air-independent propulsion, but Russia doesn’t seem really high on the idea.
- They want to test Proyekt 677 Lada and its sonar in deeper waters next year.
Perhaps the Borey and Yasen mods reflect the problems of restarting construction that had been dormant (or at least very slow) for a long time and of using newly-made components rather than older ones.
Posted in Defense Industry, Naval Modernization
Tagged Admiral Kuznetsov, Admiral Nakhimov, Admiralty Wharves, AIP, Akula, Amur-1650, Andrey Dyachkov, Bars, Borey, Borey-A, CGN, Dmitriy Donskoy, Kalibr, KB Malakhit, Lada, Onyks, proyekt 1164, Proyekt 636, Proyekt 677, Proyekt 955, Proyekt 971, Rubin, Rubin Design Bureau, Saint Nikolay, Severnoye KB, Sevmash, TsKB MT Rubin, Typhoon, Yasen, Yasen-M, Zvezdochka