Russia develops new prospective aircraft carrier
Specialists of the Krylov State Research Center developed the concept of a prospective aircraft carrier tentatively titled as the Storm.
According to representative of the research center, Vladimir Pepelyaev, Russia may start building the new aircraft carrier as soon as the customer approves the project and all questions related to finance are resolved.
The Krylov research center also develops a project of a light aircraft carrier, the combat capabilities of which will be a little inferior to those of the Storm vessel.
Most likely, the new aircraft carrier will be built at Sevmash ship-building enterprise.
According to Vladimir Pepelyaev, key parameters of the new ship (displacement, length, width, draft), as well as the composition of the air group, armament, power plant and technical means of the ship may vary.
"The multi-purpose aircraft carrier will have a total displacement of about 95,000 tons. Its length, width and draft will make up 330×42×11 meters. The width of the flight deck will be 85 meters," Pepelyaev told Interfax.
He also added that full and endurance speeds of the aircraft carrier will make up 26-30 and 14 knots.
"The project stipulates for the autonomy of 90 days. The vessel will be able to carry a stock of jet fuel of up to 6,000 tons and the crew of up to 4,000 people. Storm Project aircraft carrier will be able to carry up to 90 aircraft and helicopters. The main power plant of the ship will operate on organic fuel." Pepelyaev said.
Pravda.Ru requested an expert opinion from Victor Murakhovsky, editor-in-chief of Arsenal of the Fatherland magazine, member of the expert council, chairman of the Military-Industrial Commission of the Russian Federation:
"In my opinion, the construction of an aircraft carrier is not necessary for the near future. It should be understood that the level of costs will be enormous. A gigantic ship like this does not exist by itself, so the matter does not relate to her construction only. One also needs to form the aircraft carrier strike group. This involves the creation of aviation units that will be based on the vessel. Russia does not have certain kind of aircraft for the purpose, such as long-range radiation detection aircraft or deck-based radio-electronic warfare aircraft.
"In addition, one should create a group of ships that will take part in joint operations with the aircraft carrier. Judging from the American experience, a group like that should consist of two or three cruisers and 6-7 smaller displacement vessel, plus one or two submarines. To crown it all, one will need to set up special ground-based infrastructure for the aircraft carrier and accompanying ships, as well as ship crews and aviation crews. Therefore, the cost of the construction of the aircraft carrier can thus increase seven or eight times. "
"Is there any sense to compete with the USA at this point?"
"I see no reason to compete. A competition like this leads to a senseless arms race. I think that Russia will spend this money much more efficiently if we look for asymmetric answers and develop systems that will give us a possibility to curtail strike groups of American aircraft carriers.
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