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    Russian Naval Aviation: News

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    sepheronx

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    Russia's Pacific Fleet suspends flights of its naval planes

    Post  sepheronx on Sun Nov 08, 2009 9:33 am

    VLADIVOSTOK, November 7 (RIA Novosti) - The Russian Pacific Fleet suspended on Saturday all flights of its naval aviation following the crash of a Tu-142 maritime reconnaissance plane in Russia's Far East, the fleet spokesman said.

    A Tu-142M3 Bear-F plane reportedly went down during a combat training flight around 21:19 local time (11:19 GMT) on Friday some 20 kilometers (12 miles) offshore in the Tatar Strait, which separates mainland Russia from the island of Sakhalin.

    "A special commission is investigating the causes of the crash of the plane, which had 11 people on board. The flights have been suspended until the investigation is complete. The search for the missing crew is still underway," the spokesman said.

    According to preliminary data, the crash was caused by a technical failure.

    The official confirmed that the remains of the plane were found on Saturday morning at the depth of about 44 meters (144 feet).

    A Russian Defense Ministry source earlier said that the Navy would deploy, if necessary, the advanced Pantera and Kalmar robotic deep-water rescue vehicles to recover the plane's on-board recording devices.

    Tu-142M3 is a Russian maritime reconnaissance/anti-submarine warfare (ASW) turboprop aircraft. It is a modified version of the Tu-95 Bear strategic bomber.

    According to open sources, Russia's Pacific Fleet has at least eight Tu-142M3 aircraft in service.

    What a sad event for such a beautiful plane. But at least they will look into it and performe duties needed in order to prevent things like this happening again.

    RIAN
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    Vladimir79

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  Vladimir79 on Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:28 am

    I could hardly care about the planes... we are losing too many damned people.
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    GarryB

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    A portion of Naval airpower to be transferred to Air Force.

    Post  GarryB on Tue Mar 15, 2011 2:57 am

    14.03.2011 the 11:56
    Naval aviation passes into the composition VVS



    Since April 1 the aviation of the Naval fleet of Russia will become part VVS. Prior to the end of the year the
    Navy it must transmit from the composition of naval aviation fighters Su-27, fighter-interceptors MiG-31, distant supersonic bombers Tu-22, and also the part of transport aircraft.

    “In the composition of sea naval aviation will remain antisubmarine aircraft Il-38, Tu-142, antisubmarine
    seaplanes b -12 and carrier-based aviation, been carrier-based fighters Su-33 and helicopters KA -27”, reported “to Interfax” source in the main staff the Navy.

    In the post-Soviet period the Navy it almost completely lost its sea rocket-carrying aviation. Long-range
    antisubmarine aviation is located only in the northern and Pacific Ocean fleets, where there is about 25 machines Il-38 and 15 aircraft Tu-142.
    The Baltic fleet of antisubmarine aircraft does not have. In the Black Sea fleet remained about 4 obsolete seaplanes b -12. The majorities of antisubmarine aircraft [CHF] will by 2015 finally manufacture their
    resource.

    In the composition the Navy is one heavy aircraft-carrying cruiser “a Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union
    Kuznetsov”, whose wing in the march can consist of the carrier-based fighters Su-33, the trainer aircraft Su-25[UTG], and also the ship multipurpose helicopters KA -27 and transport- combat KA -29. Previously
    it communicated about the plans of purchases for carrier-based naval aviation of 26 fighters MiG-29[K].


    http://www.vesti.ru/doc.html?id=436112 with babelfish translation.


    So fighters, interceptors, bombers, and some transport aircraft are going to be removed from the VMA and transferred to the VVS. The air component of carriers is not effected, and the VMA will keep some of its transport aircraft and its maritime patrol aircraft like the Il-38 May, Tu-142, and Be-12 Mails.

    Interesting that it suggests that by 2015 they will start making anti submarine aircraft... or am I mistaken?

    The fact that they are transferring the Tu-22Ms to the VVS suggests they want to keep them in service as they already have plenty in storage AFAIK so adding more flying examples to the fleet would be a strange move with a plane they don't want.


    Last edited by GarryB on Thu Mar 17, 2011 12:44 am; edited 3 times in total
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    Vladimir79

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  Vladimir79 on Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:19 am

    If you switch the editor mode when you cut and paste an article, it will fill in properly.
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    George1

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  George1 on Tue Feb 07, 2012 5:54 pm

    Tu-22M in naval aviation intended for strategic maritime strikes against US carrier groups.
    I think its a logic move to transfer them to air force, after all in case of war some of them can be transferred to bases near pacific sea or northern sea.
    Modernized Tu-22M3 will be more multifunctional with a range of tasks to be able to perform

    SEAD (Kh-22P)
    Battlefield interdiction (FAB and maybe KAB bombs)
    Maritime strike (Kh-22A)
    Strategic strike(Kh-555)

    So no need to be scattered at various bases.

    Your opinion my friends?
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    GarryB

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  GarryB on Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:07 am

    The restructuring into 4 districts with the forces subordinated to the districts rather than a centralised authority will certainly have an interesting effect on things.

    The Tu-22M3 in its conventional Air Force role would be a theatre strike aircraft for attacking targets deep in Europe and China.

    The question is... will they bother practising anti shipping roles both with their Tu-22M3s and their Su-24s, which also served in the VMF in large numbers?

    I very much suspect that if they do keep a force of anti shipping trained Tu-22M3s that they will not be upgraded Tu-22M3Ms as the improvements would not effect the anti shipping role too much.
    The addition of the Kh-32 missile would likely be sufficient to make the old model Tu-22M3s effective in the naval anti shipping role, while the introduction of the Kh-32 and a raft of other new guided weapons will make the upgraded Tu-22M3Ms much more effective in their Air Force role in SEAD, and strike missions.
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    George1

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  George1 on Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:24 am

    GarryB wrote:
    I very much suspect that if they do keep a force of anti shipping trained Tu-22M3s that they will not be upgraded Tu-22M3Ms as the improvements would not effect the anti shipping role too much.

    Correct. That's why maybe they talk only for modernization of 30 aircrafts from about 100 in service. Anti shipping trained Tu-22M3s are about 40.
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    TR1

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    NITKA replacement Russia

    Post  TR1 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:07 am

    http://pics.livejournal.com/bmpd/pic/000t89cx

    Construction of RUssian NITKA replacement is underway!
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    SOC

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  SOC on Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:44 am

    Makes sense. Any idea where it is?
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    GarryB

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  GarryB on Wed Apr 25, 2012 3:06 pm

    Would be interesting to see the layout of the new facility... will it be like Kuznetsov, or something more radical...

    In fact it might give us an indication as to what upgrades the new K will get... will the new facility have catapaults... if they plan to fit them to the K in this upgrade then it would make sense to first of all need a new Nitka, and second of all get some practise operating it... afterall it is not just the pilots that need to learn what to do...
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    TR1

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  TR1 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:15 pm

    http://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%95%D0%B9%D1%81%D0%BA

    Here I believe.
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    TR1

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    NITKA replacement Russia

    Post  TR1 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:28 pm

    Hopefully this isn't just wishful thinking....
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    George1

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    Russian Navy Ordered First Batch of Ka-27M Shipborne Helicopters

    Post  George1 on Tue May 22, 2012 3:56 pm

    http://rusnavy.com/news/navy/index.php?ELEMENT_ID=15162

    Russian Navy Ordered First Batch of Ka-27M Shipborne Helicopters

    Russian Navy ordered first lot of Ka-27M modernized deck-based ASW helicopters from the Russian Helicopters holding, said the company's director general Dmitry Petrov at the HeliRussia-2012 exhibition taking place in Moscow.
    "Russian Navy ordered first modernized antisubmarine helicopters Ka-27M", reports Interfax citing Petrov.
    He declined to specify volume and delivery dates of the sale. "So far, the modernized helicopter continues state acceptance trials", Petrov said.
    Answering the question whether the new helicopters powered by Russian turboprops TV7-117V would be delivered to Russian security ministries, Petrov said that "state trials for defense ministry and other security agencies are planned in prospect".
    Ka-27 is designed for detection, tracing and destruction of submarines heading at the depths down to 500 meters, speeds up to 75 kph, and sea disturbance up to force 5, day and night, and under severe weather conditions.
    Main rotor diameter is 15.9 meters; fuselage length is 12.25 meters; width is 3.8 meters; height is 5.4 meters; combat load weight is 2 tons; crew is 3-4 men; peak speed is 270 kph; flight range is 800 km.
    As is planned, Ka-27 will be based on Mistral-class helicopter carriers to be bought from France in accordance with the signed contract.
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    George1

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  George1 on Fri Oct 12, 2012 10:55 pm

    Three Dead, One Injured in Russian Navy Be-12 Plane Crash

    http://en.ria.ru/mlitary_news/20121012/176586040.html
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    GarryB

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  GarryB on Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:47 am

    RIP to the victims. Sad


    _________________
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    KomissarBojanchev

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  KomissarBojanchev on Sat Oct 13, 2012 12:08 pm

    GarryB wrote:RIP to the victims. Sad

    Unfortunately if this news spreads more widely in the internet various bozos will start the "look how russian planes and pilots suck our western planes can whoop their asses in a pinch" BS
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    GarryB

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    Three Dead, One Injured in Russian Navy Be-12 Plane Crash

    Post  GarryB on Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:39 pm

    Unfortunately if this news spreads more widely in the internet various bozos will start the "look how russian planes and pilots suck our western planes can whoop their asses in a pinch" BS

    The key here is bozos... couldn't give a fly fk what they think, and will not ignore the bad things that happen because of them.

    Ignoring the bad things and focusing on the good things about themselves is what makes the US grate*.

    (* grate, To irritate or annoy persistently.)

    To those bozos American planes don't crash, American designed nuclear reactors in Japan didn't fail, etc etc. Don't argue with an idiot, they will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.


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    George1

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    Ka-62 Kasatka Naval variant

    Post  George1 on Tue Oct 16, 2012 12:22 am

    New Helicopter Ka-62 Kasatka Joins Russian Navy in 2014

    Sea variant of Ka-62 Kasatka helicopter will be commissioned into Russian Navy by 2014. According to Izvestiya newspaper referring to the Navy Main HQ, performance specifications for the new helicopter will be drawn up by the end of 2012 and handed over to JSC Kamov early in 2013.

    JSC Kamov started designing of the deck-based variant of Ka-62 on the own initiative. It is planned to station new helicopters on small-size ships like Project 20380 corvettes which have problems with Ka-27 helicopters requiring large hangars.

    According to the source, "large hangars impair seaworthiness and stability of ships displacing less than 3,000 tons. Such problems are typical for all Project 20380 corvettes - Stereguschiy, Boiky, and Soobrazitelny. Their hangar occupies half of the deck erection. On the other hand, it is impossible to exclude helicopters, since they are the only effective antisubmarine asset".

    The source explained that "out of the whole park of Russian helicopters, Ka-62 is the best variant. Its weight is 6 tons, half as heavy as Ka-27 and 1.5 meters lower. Kasatka has roomy frame accommodating antisubmarine assets including dipping sonar".

    According to Izvestiya, however, "naval pilots put designing of antisubmarine Ka-62 in question. One of them said the helicopter was too small to engage submarines, the rescue variant was in question as well".

    http://rusnavy.com/news/navy/index.php?ELEMENT_ID=16159
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    GarryB

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  GarryB on Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:59 am

    These helos require French engines and they ordered a few hundred engines a while back (or at least made public a requirement for a few hundred) so the question is, does this decision mean more engine orders and perhaps local licence production, or a new engine development, or are these aircraft part of the fleet that will benefit from the previous interest/order.

    These helos should be useful aircraft in a mid weight range, though I think they will only carry lightweight torpedoes and other sensors.

    I rather suspect that even down to corvette level they will have UAVs in vertical takeoff models, which will suppliment these helos and enhance their capability at sea.

    One helo is handy, but as they found with the Udaloy class ASW destroyers having two helos is even better in terms of availability and of course in prosecuting a target where one aircraft listens, while the other attacks with torpedoes and depth charges.


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    ― Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
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    Sujoy

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    Russian Navy Tests Modified Anti-Sub Helicopter

    Post  Sujoy on Tue Oct 16, 2012 2:01 pm

    Russian Navy Tests Modified Anti-Sub Helicopter

    The Russian Navy's Northern Fleet is carrying out flight tests and warfare trials of its modified Kamov Ka-27M anti-submarine helicopter from large destroyers, the fleet's spokesman, Captain Vadim Serga, said on Monday.
    "The modernized Ka-27M (NATO codename Helix) is completing deck landings on a ship as well as trials of its main systems," he said.
    The Ka-27M has already undertaken deck landing trials on a stationary destroyer at a berth on the Kola Peninsula, he added.
    The latest sea trials will involve tests of the Ka-27M's new avionics systems in search of submarines, and trials of its radar against submarine, surface and air targets.
    "The new machine has not only had modern avionics systems installed, but also updated special missions systems," he said. In addition, it has a new radar giving 360 degree coverage and a greater search radius and simultaneous tracking of dozens of targets.
    "The modernized Ka-27M has also had its service life extended by another 10 to 15 years," Serga added.
    The Ka-27 entered service with the Soviet Navy in 1982 in an anti-submarine role. Variants include the downgraded Ka-28 export model, the Ka-29 transport helicopter and Ka-31 airborne early warning system.
    It is fitted with a dipping sonar system as well as sonobuoys, and can be armed with depth charges and torpedos.

    Source : RIA Novosti

    Austin

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    Reform of Russian Naval Aviation

    Post  Austin on Sun Nov 04, 2012 10:29 am

    MOSCOW DEFENSE BRIEF

    Reform of Russian Naval Aviation

    Dmitry Boltenkov

    Two phases of naval aviation reform

    The first phase of the reform of the Russian naval aviation service, which is part of the Navy, took place in 2009-2010. It was not much different from the reforms taking place in the Air Force, and included the establishment of air bases which subsumed the existing air units and their support and logistics services. In 2009 the fighter, bomber and missile-carrier units of the naval aviation1 service were expected to be assigned to these bases - but for a number of reasons that did not happen2. As a result, the formation of several naval air bases took longer than expected.

    In the first phase of the reform in 2009 some of the existing units were assigned to 13 newly-established naval aviation air bases. These were all 2nd Rank bases3, numbers 7050 to 7062. Several of these bases, however, existed only on paper, and in 2010 the MoD began their merger. By the end of 2010 only nine of the original 13 bases remained. The only unit to retain its status as an air regiment was the 279th Independent Carrier-Based Fighter Aviation Regiment, equipped with the Su-33 carrier-based fighters.

    The second phase of the reform was rolled out in 2011-2012. In the summer of 2011 the MoD put into effect its earlier plans to transfer to the Russian Air Force the “combat forces” previously assigned to the naval aviation service.4 The naval missile-carrying squadrons equipped with the Tu-22M3 aircraft were reassigned to the Long-Range Aviation Command of the Russian Air Force. The Tu-22M3 units previously based on the Pacific coast were redeployed from Mongokhto deep inland, to the Belaya airfield in Siberia.5 The Air Force also took ownership of the naval striker and reconnaissance squadrons equipped with the Su-24M and Su-24MR aircraft, the fighter squadrons equipped with the Su-27 and Mig-31 fighters, and some of the helicopter units. The units based in Kaliningrad Region became part of the organizational structure of the Voronezh airbase.6 On the whole, the Russian naval aviation service lost about a quarter of its strength in the process.

    The author agrees with the decision to reassign some of the naval aviation units to the Air Force. These units’ combat training programs and operational strategies are now in the hands of the more capable Air Force commanders. In the greater scheme of things, the naval aviation service has always been something of a fifth wheel in the Navy’s organizational structure, and the Navy commanders have never had much enthusiasm for that particular part of their remit. Now that these units are part of the Air Force, the number of flight hours their pilots are clocking up has begun to rise to the Air Force average.7

    By late 2011 the MoD had further reduced the number of the remaining naval aviation air bases through merger.8 In a typical example of such reorganization, the anti-submarine units of the 7051st and 7061st air bases (operated by the Northern Fleet and the Pacific Fleet, respectively) were reassigned to the 7050th and 7062nd air bases. The 7051st and 7061st bases were disbanded. The 7057th and 7058th air bases of the Black Sea Fleet were merged.9 The 7055th Air Base, which took its orders directly from the center, was reduced to a single squadron; the squadron was assigned to the 859th Naval Aviation Training Center in Yeysk. As a result, the number of the remaining naval aviation air bases has been reduced to just five, with two operated by the Pacific Fleet and one apiece by the Baltic, Black Sea and Northern fleets.

    The five remaining bases have also been strengthened through the inclusion of various naval aviation support units. For instance, the 7050th Air Base in Severomorsk, operated by the Northern Fleet, has gained an extra 40 per cent of its strength though the inclusion of the already mentioned anti-submarine squadron, an oxygen generation plant, a medical examination service, an engineering and maintenance company, a truck repair company, and several other units.10. As a result, the air bases now include not only combat squadrons but various support and logistics units as well.

    The Navy was loath, however, to part with its transport squadrons. In order to prevent their transfer to the Air Force it renamed them search-and-rescue and command squadrons, and assigned them to its remaining five air bases.

    Present state of the naval aviation service

    At present the Russian naval aviation service consists of five 2nd Rank air bases; the 279th Independent Carrier-based Fighter Air Regiment; and the 859th Naval Aviation Combat Training Center in Yeysk. Each of the five air bases includes several squadrons, which perform various roles and can be based at different airfields. In essence, these air bases have subsumed the entire air strength of their respective Navy fleets. Only the Pacific Fleet has retained two air bases, owing to the fact that the fleet has always had two major hubs, one in Vladivostok and another in Kamchatka.

    The 7050th Air Base in Severomorsk serves the Northern Fleet. It operates an anti-submarine squadron equipped with Il-38 aircraft (including one upgraded Il-38N plane11); two helicopter squadrons (Ka-27PL, Ka-27PS, Ka-29, Ka-27E, and Mi-8 helicopters); and a search-and-rescue and command squadron (An-12, An-26, Il-18RT, Il-20RT, Il-18D, Il-22 and Tu-134 aircraft).12 All these units are based at the Severomorsk-1 airfield. The air base also has an anti-submarine squadron stationed at the Kipelovo airfield; it operates Tu-142M and Tu-142MR aircraft.

    The 7054th Air Base in Chkalovsk serves the Baltic Fleet. It has a transport squadron (An-26 and Tu-134 aircraft) and two helicopter units (Ka-27PL, Ka-27PS and Ka-29 helicopters), stationed at the Chkalovsk and Donskoye airfields in Kaliningrad Region.

    The 7057th Air Base in Kacha serves the Black Sea Fleet. It has a combined aircraft squadron (Be-12 and An-26) 13 and a combined helicopter squadron (Ka-27PL, Ka-27PS, Mi-Cool, both stationed at Kacha airfield. It also has a striker squadron (Su-24, Su-24MR and Tu-134) stationed at the Gvardeyskoye airfield in Crimea. 14

    The 7060th Air Base in Yelizovo is one of the two air bases serving the Pacific Fleet. It has a combined aircraft squadron (Il-38, An-12 and An-26) and a combined helicopter squadron (Ka-27PL, Ka-27PS, and Ka-27TL), both stationed at the Yelizovo airfield in Kamchatka.

    The 7062nd Air Base in Nikolayevka is the second of the two bases serving the Pacific Fleet. It operates an anti-submarine squadron (Il-38, Il-22, Il-18) and a helicopter squadron at the Nikolayevka airfield; a transport squadron (An-12, An-26 and Tu-134) at the Knevichi airfield; and an anti-submarine squadron (Tu-142M and Tu-142MR) at the Kamennyy Ruchey airfield.

    The 859th Naval Aviation Combat Training Center in Yeysk was set up in 2010 at the Yeysk airfield on the Azov Sea coast. The center operates a training helicopter squadron (Ka-27PL, Ka-27PS) and a training aircraft squadron (Tu-134UBL, Il-38 and L-39), both based in Yeysk. It also has other units, including a transport squadron (An-72 and An-26) at the Ostafyevo airfield near Moscow, whose main role is to shuttle around senior officers from the central Navy command.

    The 279th Independent Carrier-based Fighter Air Regiment in Severomorsk-3 is part of the Northern Fleet. The regiment consists of two Su-33 carrier-based fighter squadrons and a combat training squadron (Su-25UTG and Su-27UB), all of them stationed at the Severomorsk-3 airfield.

    There is every reason to believe that at some point in the future the MoD will either disband or sharply reduce the size of the naval aviation command headquarters at the individual Navy fleets. All the naval aviation air strength will be controlled directly by the air base commanders of the respective Navy fleets, who will be subordinated to the fleet commanders.

    According to an interview with Gen. I. Kozhin, the Russian naval aviation service now has about 300 aircraft and helicopters, some of them mothballed.15

    The MoD has launched large projects to modernize the naval aviation airfields in Yeysk, Severomorsk-116 and Chkalovsk.17 At some point in the future the Chkalovsk airfield may host a large force of aircraft (up to a hundred) operated by the Air Force and the Navy.18 Upgrade projects are also under way at the Yelizovo19 and Knevichi airfields.

    The 859th Training Center in Yeysk

    After the transfer of naval aviation pilot schools to the Air Force in 1959 the Soviet (now Russian) naval aviation service was left without any schools of its own. This is why the future naval pilots are trained at the Air Force schools, and then receive additional training at the naval aviation combat training centers.

    After the break-up of the Soviet Union both of these centers (the 33rd and the 1063rd) were left in Ukraine. To replace them, in 1994 Russia set up the new 444th Naval Aviation Combat Training Center at the Ostrov airfield in Pskov Region. The choice of the site for the center had proved to be very unfortunate: it is far from the sea, and the weather conditions are not conducive to pilot training. As a result, according to unofficial reports, 20 the center had failed to assume any significant role in the naval aviation training programs before it was eventually disbanded.

    The Black Sea Fleet’s naval aviation service still operated the small 859th training center in Kacha (Crimea), which specialized in training crews for Russian-made naval helicopters destined for export. In 2009 the MoD decided to disband the 444th Training Center in Ostrov and to replace it with a new naval aviation training center to be set up in the south of the country using the personnel of the existing 859th center. The facilities used by the center in Yeysk were previously operated by the local aviation institute, but the institute was disbanded as part of the military reforms, to be replaced by the new 859th Naval Aviation Combat Training Center. Officially the Naval Aviation Center in Yeysk commenced operations on February 1, 2010. 21 In addition, the MoD has chosen the Yeysk center to operate the new carrier deck simulator now being built there to replace the NITKA simulator in Crimea.

    The MoD has allocated an impressive 24bn roubles for a project to build the deck simulator and renovate the Yeysk airfield. Deliveries of the equipment for the NITKA simulator in Yeisk began in April 2012; the first stage of the project is scheduled for completion by the year’s end. 22 The whole naval aviation complex in Yeysk should be completed in 2015. 23

    Once the 859th center is fully up and running, the MoD will probably implement a new training schedule for naval aviation pilots and ground personnel. They will take their initial and basic course at the Air Force training facilities in Krasnodar and Voronezh, and then complete their qualification at the naval aviation training center in Yeysk.

    Although Russia is now building a carrier deck simulator on its own territory, the MoD has no intention of abandoning the existing NITKA simulator in Ukraine’s Crimea. The Ukrainian facility will mainly be used to train Indian Air Force pilots as part of the export contract for the Vikramaditya aircraft carrier.24

    Combat training

    One of the problems the Russian naval aviation service shares with the Air Force is recruitment and retention of pilots and other qualified specialists. At present the average age of the Russian naval aviation pilot is about 40 years.

    The timing of the reform of the Russian Air Force and the naval aviation service coincided with the retirement for reasons of age of many highly trained pilots. As a result, naval aviation is facing an acute shortage of personnel. The Air Force has a similar problem, but it has the first choice of the available new pilots, so the situation in the naval aviation service is even worse. To illustrate, it has been four years since the Northern Fleet’s aviation service last received any young pilots.25 The naval aviation command is therefore doing its best to retain the pilots it already has. One of the measures has been to push back the retirement age for pilots from 42 years to 45. The MoD is also considering a proposal to recruit those pilots who have already been demobilized and use them to fill civilian instructor vacancies at the new training center in Yeysk. For all these reasons the main emphasis of the training programs is currently to bring the young and middle-aged pilots up to speed.

    The naval aviation service is also facing a shortage of aircraft maintenance personnel - here too it gets whoever is left after the Air Force has had its pick of the graduates.

    After the collapse of the Soviet Union and the ensuing economic crisis the level of combat training in the naval aviation service fell off a cliff. In the past five years, however, there has been a very notable rise in the intensity of combat training programs. The number of flight hours naval aviation pilots are clocking up began to rise even before the rollout of the military reform in 2008.

    For example, in the early 2000s the average naval aviation pilot would spend about 18-20 hours in the air per annum. By 2008 that figure had increased to more than 70 hours. In the anti-submarine squadrons it was as high as 100 hours, although in the helicopter units it was a lower-than-average 50 hours. In recent years, however, that growth has slowed. In 2011 the Pacific Fleet’s naval aviation service failed to reach its target of 100 hours by some 40 hours. 26 In the Baltic Fleet the helicopter pilots also clocked up an average of just 60 hours. The situation is somewhat better in the Northern Fleet. In 2011 the pilots of its Il-38 anti-submarine aircraft spent 35 per cent more time in the air than the year before. 27

    The average figure for the naval aviation service still remains well below the Air Force levels - but the gap is gradually closing.

    Programs to train carrier-based aircraft pilots were stepped up in 2002, and the MoD is making great efforts in this area. Russia’s only aircraft carrier, the Soviet Navy Admiral Kuznetsov, has made five outings to the Atlantic and the Mediterranean in recent years. The carrier aviation squadrons are regularly receiving new pilots. For example, in 2011 three new pilots made their first solo landings on the carrier’s deck. During the last mission by the Admiral Kuznetsov in 2011 pilots made about 150 landings of the Su-33 fighters on its deck, conducted more than 20 simulated air fights, and flew about as many target intercept missions. In 2010 and 2011 pilots of the 279th Independent Carrier-based Fighter Air Regiment clocked up an average of 80-90 flight hours. The figure for the regiment’s flight instructors was 120-150 hours. 28 The main task currently facing the regiment is to retain and develop Russia’s carrier-based aviation expertise.

    One of the goals of Russia’s “New Look” reform of the Army and the Navy is to step up combat training programs. The MoD is trying to make these programs less conventional and more varied. In recent years exercise scenarios have often included redeployment of naval aviation strength between the individual Navy fleets. For example, during the Ladoga-2009 event the Northern Fleet’s Il-38 aircraft and helicopters were redeployed to airfields operated by the Northern Fleet in Kaliningrad Region. During the Vostok-2010 exercise a group of Il-38 and Tu-22M3 aircraft were redeployed to the Far East. In August 2008, Il-38 aircraft took off from the Anadyr airfield to provide air cover to the Ryazan missile submarine during its redeployment to the Pacific Fleet. The Tu-142M long-range anti-submarine aircraft are flying regular patrol missions over the North Atlantic, the Arctic and off the Alaskan coast. In 2009 the Tu-142M aircraft flying long missions began to refuel in mid-air.

    The Russian naval aviation service is regularly taking part in the Navy’s combat training events. In 2011 the Pacific Fleet’s aircraft airlifted marines from Vladivostok to Kamchatka, provided anti-submarine cover to Navy ships, and flew aerial reconnaissance missions. On several occasions they detected foreign submarines. For example, during a flight to Kamchatka anti-submarine aircraft spotted two foreign subs in the Sea of Japan and one near the Kuril Islands.

    Sometimes, however, the anti-submarine aviation service’s training programs are held back by the problems affecting the entire Navy. It has been reported, for example, that the command of the Pacific Fleet seldom allows its submarines to be used for the training of the fleet’s own pilots. 29

    In the Navy’s marine units the intensity of combat training programs has also increased sharply following the rollout of the reform. The programs of all the reconnaissance and airborne assault units include parachute jumps. In 2011 the Northern Fleet’s marines made over a thousand jumps.

    roper attention is now being paid to training the parachute rescue groups at the air bases. Rescue operations at sea also feature prominently in the day-to-day operations of the naval aviation service.

    In recent years the Russian Navy’s ships have been spending a lot more time at sea on various combat training missions. The Russian Navy maintains a permanent presence in the Indian Ocean as part of the efforts to ensure the security of shipping lanes and combat piracy. Naval aviation helicopter crews always take part in these missions.

    Conclusions

    For a long time after the break-up of the Soviet Union the Russian naval aviation service was struggling with three main problems: a very limited fuel allowance, obsolete and decrepit hardware, and a shortage of qualified pilots and ground personnel. In recent years, however, the service’s combat training programs have intensified very sharply. Its pilots are spending a lot more time in the air than in the previous years, and the figure continues to rise. The MoD is gradually refreshing the service’s fleet of aircraft and improving its maintenance standards. For now, problems remain with the recruitment and retention of pilots and other personnel. Nevertheless, it is safe to say that the Russian naval aviation service has exited from its post-Soviet nosedive, and is steadily gaining altitude.

    1. The Soviet Union could afford to have two duplicate aviation services, the Long Range Aviation and the Naval Missile-Carrying Aviation. As Russia is currently trying to optimize its armed forces, such duplication is unnecessary and makes no sense. There were two possible solutions - to transfer the Tu-22M2 units from Naval Aviation to Long Range Aviation, or to do it the other way around. The MoD chose the first option.

    2. According to unofficial reports, having looked at the state of the aircraft to be transferred from the naval aviation service to the Air Force, the Air Force generals said, “We have enough scrap of our own”. Pictures of some of the Tu-22M3 aircraft made at the abandoned airfield in Vozdvizhenka and posted on the Internet confirm the generals’ assessment: http://www.kfss.ru/index.php/component/content/article/469-vozdvizhenka.html.

    3. A 2nd Rank air base consists of several squadrons stationed at one or more airfields; support units such as communications and radio-electronics, security and maintenance; training ranges; command headquarters; and airborne weapons bases.

    4. http://www.aviaport.ru/digest/2011/03/22/212677.html.

    5.http://www.aisttv.ru/ru/%D0%A1%D1%82%D1%80%D0%B0%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%86%D1%8B/%D0%9D%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%BE%D1%81%D1%82%D0%B8?id=2098.

    6. Such an arrangement is not new for Russia. It has already been used for the airfield in Budennovsk, where the strike air group of the 6972nd Air Base is supported by the helicopter base which shares the same site.

    7. It has been reported that compared to 2011, the intensity of the flight training program of the 7th Air Group’s bomber squadron (the Su-24Ms previously assigned to the Navy) has increased by an average of 40 per cent. // http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/newspaper/item/1965-romantiki-neba.

    8. In late 2010 the Air Force’s air bases were also merged; in that respect the reform of the naval aviation service lagged behind the reforms in the rest of the armed forces by about a year.

    9. The merger came shortly after both of the Black Sea Fleet’s air bases that existed at the time were given new standards in August 2011.

    10. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/988-kryilya-nad-morem.

    11. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/951-il-38-%E2%80%93-groza-podlodok.

    12. The former transport squadron was renamed to a search-and-rescue unit so as to avoid its transfer to the Air Force. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/988-kryilya-nad-morem.

    13. http://sc.mil.ru/files/morf/military/archive/10aprflag.pdf.

    14. http://ria.ru/defense_safety/20111219/520805971.html.

    15. http://krasnaya-zvezda.com/2011/07/13_07/2_05.html.

    16. http://stat.function.mil.ru/news_page/country/more.htm?id=10938414@egNews.

    17. http://lenta.ru/news/2012/02/22/chkalovsky/.

    18. Strazh Baltiki newspaper - http://sc.mil.ru/files/morf/military/archive/27%2004%202012.pdf.

    19. http://www.nord-news.ru/murman_news/2011/08/12/?newsid=18495.

    20. http://www.forumavia.ru/forum/0/1/453697274135563350081261425201_1.shtml.

    21. http://www.nr-yug.ru/content/view/6568/.

    22. http://russianplanes.net/id73289.

    23. http://yeiskgid.ru/news/publication-1208/.

    24. http://izvestia.ru/news/533325#ixzz24MjN3OR5.

    25. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/988-kryilya-nad-morem.

    26. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/news-menu/vesti/iz-vmf/item/1550-pod-kryilom-%E2%80%94-okean.

    27. http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/275-v-ekstremalnyih-usloviyah.

    28. http://twower.livejournal.com/522538.html#cutid1.

    29. http://www.redstar.ru/images/files/regions/240312/240312-b-v.pdf.

    Hachimoto

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    NITKA replacement Russia

    Post  Hachimoto on Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:04 pm



    Russia to Open Carrier Pilot Training Site by Fall

    MOSCOW, March 15 (RIA Novosti) - A new Russian carrier-deck pilot training site will be ready for operation by fall, the Federal Agency for Special Construction Work confirmed on Friday, replacing a Soviet-era base in Ukraine which Kiev has said it may lease to other countries.

    The construction work there is effectively complete. I believe aircraft will start flying there in August or September,” Grigory Naginsky, head of the Federal Agency for Special Construction Work (Spetsstroi) said.

    Former Russian Navy chief Adm. Vladimir Vysotsky had previously said the training facility in the city of Yeisk, on Russia's Black Sea coast, should be complete by 2020.

    Earlier in March, Ukrainian First Deputy Defense Minister Oleksandr Oleinik said Ukraine, which does not operate fixed-wing shipborne naval aircraft, was considering leasing out its Nitka training site in Crimea to other countries.

    Under a 1997 bilateral agreement, Russia occasionally uses Ukraine's Nitka Naval Pilot Training Center, the only land-based training facility for its carrier-based fixed-wing pilots. At present, the site is only used by Russia on a short-term basis to train Northern Fleet carrier pilots, who fly Su-33 naval fighter jets and Su-25UTG conversion trainers for Russia's sole carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov.

    The Nitka Center was built in the Soviet era for pilots to practice taking-off and landing from aircraft carrier decks. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the facility remained under Ukraine’s control.
    The center provides facilities such as a launch pad, a catapult launch device and arrester wires, a glide-path localizer, a marker beacon, and an optical landing system.

    The Russian Defense Ministry has previously asked the Ukrainian Defense Ministry to lease the site to Russia. Ukraine’s then-Defense Minister Mykhailo Yezhel supported Russia’s request. However, a firm deal for the Russia lease option was not clinched, Oleinik said earlier this month, so the Ukrainian Defense Ministry was looking at other options for using it.
    "India and China are the obvious potential candidates for this," Douglas Barrie, air warfare analyst at the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, said earlier this month.
    India is awaiting delivery of a refurbished Russian aircraft carrier which will operate Russian MiG-29K fighter jets. China only has one carrier, from which naval aircraft were seen operating for the first time last year, and has little experience of fixed-wing naval operations. Most other aircraft carrier operators either use short take-off/vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft whose crews would not need a facility like Nitka, or have their own such facilities, or use only ships for training.

    Under the original agreement, Russia traded use of the Nitka facilities for spare parts for Sukhoi-family naval fighter jets, which were the only type allowed to operate at the center. Russia and Ukraine were Nitka's only users.
    In August, Russia’s then-Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov said Russia and Ukraine had signed a protocol on amendments to that agreement, setting out payment for using the site, unrestricted use of a range of naval aircraft for training and testing, and the possibility of sharing the center with third parties.

    The Russian Defense Ministry said last year it was paying about $700,000 annually to rent Nitka and was willing to upgrade the facility. Russia, which has only one aircraft carrier - the Admiral Kuznetsov - is drawing up plans for a new nuclear-powered aircraft carrier for its Navy by 2018.


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    GarryB

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    Russia to Open Carrier Pilot Training Site by Fall

    Post  GarryB on Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:47 am

    I would guess it would be a chance to make the massive carrier simulator more modular, so they should be able to put in the electronics and communications on the upgraded Kuznetsov on the new base.

    Would be interesting to look at satellite photos of the new site to see if it is fitted with or for catapults...


    _________________
    “The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion […] but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

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    Corrosion

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

    Post  Corrosion on Fri May 31, 2013 7:21 pm

    Haven't followed this forum for long time.

    What is the status of Naval Flankers? Are those going to be upgraded?
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    GarryB

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    What is the status of Naval Flankers? Are those going to be upgraded?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:42 pm

    What is the status of Naval Flankers? Are those going to be upgraded?

    Unlikely... they will probably be quite worn out by now.


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    “The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion […] but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

    ― Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order

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    Re: Russian Naval Aviation: News

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