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Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier to enter trials following overhaul.

| 2018

Russia's only aircraft carrier will enter trials for over half a year following its overhaul. Speaking to TASS Russian news agency on July 25, 2018, Zvyozdochka Shipyard CEO Sergei Marichev discussed the overhaul of the Admiral Kuznetsov, Russia's sole aircraft carrier. He noted that, following its overhaul, the aircraft carrier will embark on a seven-month period of trials. "In mid-April this year, he said, a contract was signed for the repairs and some modernization works that will last two years and a half, after which seven-month trials are scheduled."

Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier to enter trials following overhaul

Admiral Kuznetsov will embark on 7 months of trials (Picture source: UK MoD)

Marichev continued, "In the first place, large-scale repairs of the warship’s main propulsion unit are planned along with the replacement of boilers, the repair and recovery of main geared-turbine assemblies, powerplant compartments, the equipment of turbine and diesel-driven generator units and refrigerating mechanisms. This is a very large and technologically complex volume of work."

The overhaul work is geared towards extending Admiral Kuznetsov's service life by several decades. Besides the overhaul of the propulsion system, the aircraft carrier may receive new weapons systems, such as the Pantsir-M surface-to-air missile system, the naval variant of the land-based SAM.

He added that initial work had begun prior to the formal signing of a contract in April 2018 and the pace of work has increased thereafter. "Repair works under the contract have been launched in full since May within the framework of the documentation received," he said. Russian officials said earlier this year that the Admiral Kuznetsov will complete the overhaul process no later than 2021. It will thus complete its trials either in 2021 or 2022. "At a certain moment, the ship will be delivered to the dock for dismantling the line of shafts and screws, carry out their flaw detection and repairs, repair the sea valves and make coating of the hull’s underwater part. This operation is planned in Roslyakovo, in the PD-50 floating dock," Marichev noted.

For the time being, Admiral Kuznetsov will be the only aircraft carrier in service with the Navy. Russia has plans to produce new aircraft carriers in the future, though the introduction of one of these into service can be assumed to be over a decade away.

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