Saturday, November 13, 2010

Russia Rebuild Its 4 Project 1144 Nuclear-Powered Cruisers

The Russian Defense Ministry plans to overhaul its four Project 1144 nuclear-powered cruisers. Notably, the Admiral Nakhimov heavy nuclear-powered missile cruiser will reenter service in 2012, after lengthy repairs (that will have lasted over a decade in total) are completed.The Project 1144 nuclear-powered missile cruisers were developed for attacking capital enemy warships. They were equipped with powerful air-defense systems and had substantial anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capabilities. In addition to these auxiliary weapons, they had missile systems designed for highly specialized objectives.These battle-worthy cruisers could only be used to shadow U.S. Navy carrier task forces.

This narrow specialization predetermined their future. A cash-strapped Russia was unable to complete all four cruisers, only commissioning the Pyotr Veliky (Peter the Great) warship ahead of the Russian Navy's 300th anniversary in 1996. The other three warships remained moored alongside shipyard piers.Russia's warship fleet is gradually being transformed into a more sophisticated formation. Corvettes and frigates, now under construction, are to be supplemented with destroyers and amphibious assault ships in the upcoming decade. Weapons and equipment will be standardized across these ships. Interchangeable components allow greater flexibility in servicing and repairing ships of different classes. This will make it possible to establish inexpensive but hard-hitting task forces.

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