Russia To Modernize Its Lone Aircraft Carrier Next Year, New Carrier Program Could Start in 2025

Modernization of Russia’s heavy aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov is planned to be launched in the first quarter of 2017, the corresponding contract will be signed in the short run, a source in the defense industry complex told TASS on Wednesday.

“The works on the vessel will begin after she returns from a long-distance voyage in the Mediterranean in the first quarter of 2017 and will last for two-three years,” the source said.

“The Defense Ministry’s contract with the United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) on the aircraft carrier’s repair with modernization worth several billion rubles under the technical design of the Nevskoye Design Bureau is ready, it will be signed in June,” he added. The source said that the service contract on the Admiral Kuznetsov with the Northern Fleet command has already been concluded.

It is unknown where the upgrade will be carried out. According to the source, the Sevmash shipyard and Zvezdochka Ship Repair Center are among the bidders. “The modernization will focus on the aircraft carrier’s flight deck, including replacement of the deck covering, tailhooks, aircraft arresting gear and other elements of the take-off system,” he said.

The 55,000-ton Admiral Kuznetsov will enter the two to three-year upgrade availability at an unknown Russian yard sometime next year to undergo upgrades to allow the carrier to improve launching and recovering aircraft.

SOURCES – Tass, USNI, Youtube