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Russian Navy Plans New Aircraft Carrier After Decades

At present, the Russian Navy possesses only a single aircraft carrier known as the "Admiral Kuznetsov", which is expected to re-enter service with the country's navy next year after undergoing six years of maintenance and upgrades at the Sevmorput Shipyard in Murmansk.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — After decades of not constructing aircraft carrier transport, the Russian Navy is currently contemplating the construction of a new aircraft carrier to enhance its capabilities for various operational missions.

 The plan for building the aircraft carrier was disclosed by the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, Admiral Nikolai Yevmenov, himself, in an interview with the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper.

“The issue regarding the effort to establish an aircraft carrier has been resolved. It (the aircraft carrier) will enhance the effectiveness in carrying out various operational tasks,” he stated in the interview with the aforementioned newspaper.

At present, the “brown-water navy” consists of warships combining anti-submarine capabilities and attack capabilities, such as the corvettes “Steregushchy” and “Gremyashchy,” along with fast-guided missile attack ships like the “Grad Sviyazhsk.”

Meanwhile, the “blue-water navy” comprises frigates, patrol ships, and amphibious assault ships capable of deploying assets and military personnel over long distances.

Currently, the Russian Navy possesses a single aircraft carrier named “Admiral Kuznetsov,” which is undergoing repairs.

Kuznetsov
Admiral Kuznetsov

 

The aircraft carrier is expected to re-enter service next year after six years in the Sevmorput Shipyard in Murmansk for maintenance and upgrades.

Built in 1982 and only completed in 1991, the 58,000-ton “Admiral Kuznetsov” entered dry dock for maintenance and upgrades in 2017.

According to the Russian news agency “TASS,” the aircraft carrier is expected to undergo sea trials in the spring of 2024, and if successful, it will enter service with the Russian Navy by the end of the following year.

The ongoing repair and modernization efforts on the “Admiral Kuznetsov,” initiated six years ago, aim to extend the aircraft carrier’s operational life by an additional 15 to 20 years.

 The announcement that the lone Russian aircraft carrier will conclude its maintenance works next year after six years in dry dock has been positively received by defense observers in the country.

Many defense observers have advocated for the Russian government to retire or terminate the service of the “Admiral Kuznetsov” due to various issues and accidents experienced by the vessel.

The series of problems and accidents, whether at sea or in dry dock, have earned the Russian lone aircraft carrier the moniker of a “cursed warship.”

While the United States, China, and other nations are actively constructing aircraft carriers to assert their maritime power, Russia, as a major military power with high engineering and military knowledge, continues to rely on its frequently malfunctioning lone aircraft carrier, the “Admiral Kuznetsov.”

The question arises as to why Russia, as a leading military power, possesses only one aircraft carrier compared to its closest rival, the United States, which has 11. — DSA

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