Russian battlecruiser Admiral Nakhimov delayed from maintenance until 2023

The refit of the Russian battlecruiser Admiral Nakhimov will take a few years longer than planned. According to, that was announced this week by Alexey Rakhmanov who is president of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (OSK) during the ARMY 2019 International Military-Technical Forum.

Admiral Nakhimov
Admiral Naknimov while it still carried the Soviet flag and the original name Kalinin. Photo: US Navy

Admiral Nakhimov is a Kirov-class battlecruiser. It was originally commissioned in 1988. A contract for modernization was signed in 2013, and in 2014 the ship was handed over to the shipyard. The first plan was to have the ship ready for service again in 2020, but that was later changed to 2021. As late as this January, the message was that Admiral Nakhimov would be ready for sea trials in 2020. However, now this schedule has been moved to the right by a few years. According to OSK, the ship will not be ready for service before late 2022 or early 2023. The shipyard prepares to launch the ship into water in 2021 because they need the dry dock for other purposes, but they will need another year and a half to finish the works.

The Kirov-class is an enormous warship. It is 250 meters long and displaces an impressive 25,860 tons. It is powered by two nuclear reactors that deliver a total of 163,000 hp. This gives the ship a speed up to 31 knots. The Russian name for the class is project 1144, Orlan.

Four Kirov-class ships were constructed between 1973 and 1996. Admiral Ushakov (originally Kirov) and Admiral Lazarev (originally Frunze) have both been idle since 2002, and an official decision has been made to scrap them both in 2021.

The only remaining Kirov-class aside from Admiral Nakhimov is the 10 years younger Pyotr Velikiy. It is still in active service but a large maintenance and upgrade program is scheduled to begin in 2020. So if they begin the refit of Pyotr Velikiy on time, Russia will have to face a period without any battlecruisers on active duty.




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