Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
Thanks to Kiev’s “ban” on supplying engines for Russian frigates, the Russian Navy is proceeding to build more advanced ships
Recently the Russian military-industrial sources stunned the respectable public with an unexpected revelation. As was reported by a source in the Kaliningrad “Yantar” shipyard, the Russian NPO “Saturn” will be involved in the production of gas turbine engines for a new series of frigates of project 11356, intended for export to India. “Gas turbine engines for ships, at least for those that will be built at the Kaliningrad “Yantar” shipyard, will be made by “Saturn,” said a source in the enterprise to the publication FlotProm. Thus, Russia will deliver to the Indian side fully equipped frigates of project 11356.
Accordingly, the previously announced version of events, according to which Russia refused these ships precisely because it has no engines for them, becomes, to put it mildly, doubtful.
It also compels one to consider other, more substantial reasons for the refusal of the already mass-produced frigates. Some Russian bloggers, experts in naval matters, point to the presence of these.
“The program of the first three was late by 2-3 years, although still ahead of 22350. The “marketable” turbine will probably, by 2018, go first of all to a new project. 11356 will have to be modified for a new experience. It is obvious that they cannot enter the fleet until the end of 2019-2020. And if 22350 in series takes to build not more than 4 years (and this is the maximum period, in reality, in a large series Yantar will be freely released for 2.5-3.5 years), why wait for outdated, budget-cut frigates? They don’t have anti-submarine warfare, all combat systems are much more simple, they don’t surpass at all in anything. This is a 3 year old ship for the price of a new one. And why spend money, time, and the power of the plant on them? Yantar builds quickly, and the speed of construction depends to a large extent not on it but on component suppliers. The shipyard is an assembler, it makes only the “box”. All the delay with 11356 was the fault of the suppliers and fitters from the “industry”. The release of 22350 is slow, because half of its systems were developed in the course of construction, and work is still ongoing. If everything, conditionally, was “laid out in a warehouse”, it would have been assembled much faster, relatively, in a year or two. Now, when the majority of systems 22350 are in production,”Yantar”, during the beginning of a long series, in 4 years would release the main one, and 1-2 every year, like a conveyor belt, as was the case with 11356. In fact, now we will lose in both cases, 5 years anyway, but by selling to India, like we did with the “Mistrals”, we refund the money and then some, but at the same time we can get much better ships (during the construction of 22350)”.
Let me explain for those who are not willing to go into such heavy detail. Currently, for the Russian Navy two types of frigates of project 11356 are being built (“Admiral Grigorovich”) – these same “budget-cut” ones, according to the evaluation of our colleague, and project 22350 (“Admiral Gorshkov”) is fully-fledged – and larger patrol ships. And the crux of the matter is that the funds released from the construction of obsolete ships, will go to the reinforcement and expansion of the program of more progressive ships.
Of course, this decision imposed itself and matured in the Russian military circles, regardless of the number of external circumstances. But, nevertheless, it is difficult to overestimate the psychological significance of the failure of the Kiev junta to supply Russia with the engines for frigates of “budget-cut” type. After Poroshenko banned the Nikolaev plant “Zorya-Mashproekt” from executing the Russian order, the debate about the destiny of this already controversial project reached its climax in Russia. This discussion finally was resolved in favor of the transfer of these controversial ships to India, and the construction of the new, much more powerful Russian frigates.
And, by the way, maybe even more advanced than the current leader of the fleet “Admiral Gorshkov”. Right now it became known that the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation issued the order for the fulfilment of development of experimental construction work for Federal state needs: “the creation of a promising multipurpose combat ship with a displacement of about 4,000 tons,” (“Project 22350С”). Military experts attribute the news with plans of the Russian military shipbuilders to switch to a serial construction of military ships in the most advanced operational method of large-block assembly. Something like what is shown in this picture:
So it turns out that the Kiev “helmsman” Petro Poroshenko very thoroughly had a hand in the upcoming modernization of the Russian Navy. And for sure he deserves for this all kinds of sweeties, which are so nicely produced by his Lipetsk candy factory. Well, let him to continue, he earned it.
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