New destroyer: pause
The author's version of the article published on 21.06.2018 in the newspaper "Vzglyad" (reference 1).
In one of his recent interviews, the president of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC), A. Rakhmanov, indirectly indicated the abandonment of construction for the Russian Navy of new combat surface ships of the ocean zone - the destroyers of project 23560 "Leader". In response to a question from the Izvestia correspondent about why they refused to build them, he replied: "All questions to the customer, if the Defense Ministry decides that it should start building [the Leader], we will take it up" (ref. 2 ). A skeptical reader might get the impression that the Military Department easily changes some ill-conceived decisions to others, while in fact no one thought of abandoning the construction of the destroyers of the new project.
In the initial plan for the activities of the Russian Defense Ministry for 2013-2020, concerning the equipping of modern weapons, military and special equipment, the new destroyer was listed in the section "Development of prospective models. Adopting the Arms: Beginning of Mass Production "(presumably meant laying of the head ship) with the date "until 30.12.2018" (reference 3).
According to the annual reports of the Northern Design Bureau, the sketch design of the destroyer project 23560 began in April 2015 and by the end of the next year it was completed by 100% (ref. 4). The development of the technical project was planned to start in June 2016, but consideration of options for the draft project was delayed, and its approval was made approximately in July-August 2017 (ref. 5), after which a pause was made during the creation of the ship. That's right - a pause is made, and not a red light, for without the main ship of the ocean zone of a full-fledged Navy, Russia will not have (as there would be no army without a main tank, and aviation without a fighter gaining air control). Work on the destroyer project was suspended for at least two reasons.First frigates
The first reason was the problems with the construction of frigates. Back in 2005, the "plan of the Navy command, supported by naval science, was consistently created: the first corvette, then the frigate, then the destroyer and then the aircraft carrier" (reference 6). If things are going on with the corvettes, albeit with a scratch, (series 20380/20385 is being built at two plants, four ships are actively operating in the Baltic and the North Sea, two of them were tested in distant waters), then the construction of frigates pr. 22350 was safely torn down by the construction factory (Northern shipyard) and the developer of the Polimen-Redut (Almaz-Antey) air defense system.
As you know, the main ship of the Admiral Gorshkov series, the construction of which began more than 12 years ago, has not yet been transferred to the fleet. Three more ships are in completion and on the slipways, however, no new frigate has been laid since 2013 and, most likely, despite the announcement of the serial number of 22350 in six units (ref.
, there will be no more. Instead they are supposed to build an improved modification of "Gorshkov", which is called 22350M (although by the adopted five-digit system the index should be 22351 or something like that).
Information about the new project is very small: it will have a larger displacement and is better armed. Perhaps the new frigate will even have an oceanic zone (mini destroyer) and, paradoxically, the first rank (according to available data, more than 5,000 tons of normal or standard displacement). It is not ruled out that the order for the 22350M series will be placed at two shipyards - North (St. Petersburg) and Yantar (Kaliningrad) (reference 9), which would be very good, as they are able to quickly build ships on the Yantar. In general, as it is insulting, in addition to nuclear and non-nuclear submarines, the LGP in 2018-2027 included mainly frigates and ships of the "coastal defense" (near sea zone), delaying the creation of the surface ocean component of the Navy for 7-10 years.The new slipway
Another weighty reason for the suspension of work on the creation of a new destroyer was the lack of suitable construction sites. The main dimensions of prospect 23560 can only be guessed. The most reliable displacement is known from the former Deputy Minister of Defense for military-technical support Yury Borisov - 14,000 tons (ref. 11). With such a complete displacement, the main dimensions should be close to the following: the length is the largest 199 m, the width is the greatest 22.5 m, the sediment is an average of 6.8 m (obtained by substitution for the coefficients of the theoretical drawing commensurate with analogs, in particular - with missile cruisers 1164).
Covered slips of Sevmash (Severodvinsk) are currently entirely occupied with nuclear submarine subjects (Borei, Yaseni, special purpose submarines), the shipbuilding complex Zvezda in the Far East is not yet ready, Kerch's Gulf has not yet restored its competences (and this will not happen soon), Yantar's production capabilities are limited by the dimensions of the transfer (docking) dock - up to 170 m, the St. Petersburg Baltiysky Zavod is densely occupied by nuclear icebreakers, the slipways of the operating shipyard of the Northern shipyard allow building orders with the same longest length as on "Yantar".
At the very end of last year, a long-awaited contract was signed between the Northern Shipyard and Metrostroi for the construction of a slipway site (instead of the previously planned dry dock) with a two-spiral slip of 250x140 m with the completion of works in Q1. 2019 (Ref. 12). The active phase of the work was to begin in April this year. (ref. 13) and, judging by the published satellite images, it has already begun (ref. 14). A new boathouse in St. Petersburg, in which two amphibious assault helicopter carriers (UDK) (reference 15) are planned to be built for the first time, will be removed from the agenda, "where to build the" Leaders "?, But for the accelerated construction of a series for two fleets another shipyard, which, in an ideal, can be the SSK "Zvezda".
23560: facts and guesses
The estimated main dimensions of the new destroyer are given above. They are close to the dimensions of the unattractive externally conceptual project of the Krylov Scientific Center, the pagodal superstructure of which evokes associations with the Japanese battleships of the Second World War, but the tonnage displaced in the media (17,500 tons) is clearly overstated. Sounded by Yu Borisov, 14,000 tons fit well into the worldwide trend of increasing the displacement of the main surface ships of the ocean zone. The small-scale (so far small-series) "Zumvalt" weighs 16,000 tons, the Chinese Type 055 is about 12,000 tons, even the version of the brilliant Arlee Burke III (the best and most massive destroyer of our time) has come close to 10,000 tons.
It is already known that from the two variants of the main power plant (gas turbine and nuclear) proposed by the customer to the customer, the nuclear power plant (reference 16) was chosen, which will allow the "Leaders" to feel comfortable both in distant solitary navigation (in peacetime) and in the structure of shipborne carrier-based and strike groups (led by the nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and TARKR pr. 11442M).
The composition of the armament of project 23560 can only be judged on the concept design of the KGNC, but here, unlike the form of the superstructure, the fantasy of its authors, it is supposed, was nevertheless limited by the requirements of the Navy (let's call it the TTZ advance design). If so, according to the advertising materials presented at the "Army-2017", the "Leader" will carry about 200 UVP cells for various missiles (128 air defense and anti-missile systems, 64-72 CRBD, RCP and PLR), 130 mm AU (possibly even 152-mm - A.Sh.), two helicopters, etc. (reference 17).
As for the new deadlines for the implementation of the program for the creation of a new destroyer, that is, information that its technical design (the main stage of the project development, during which the decisions taken in the draft project are confirmed and detailed) will begin after 2020, and the construction of the main ship - approximately in 2025 g (reference 15) (for an early update of the main naval staff of the Russian Navy, we would very much like to see the construction of two orders for SV simultaneously started and two at Zvezda).
As to the seriality of the destroyers, prospect 23560, there are data that at first it was planned to order 12 ships (six for the SF and the Pacific Fleet), then this amount was reduced to eight units (four plus four) (ref. 18). In this connection it is necessary to emphasize that the seriality of destroyers is determined by the same criterion as the seriality of aircraft carriers (ref. 20), namely, the presence of two CAGs permanently on the BS (one of the SF and the other of the TF) and providing the projection of the force on any area of the World Ocean.
The number of destroyers in the CAG must be at least two if there are more, say, four large frigates in the 22350M. Four EMs on combat service means 12 in combat composition of the Navy (taking into account 4 in the readiness to change those who are on the BS, and 4 in the repair). Otherwise, there will be no permanent presence.Difficulties in classifying
In conclusion, there is little semantics. A destroyer is a destroyer, that is, a destroyer. A destroyer capable of acting as part of a squadron (at sea and in combat). The destroyers appeared shortly before the Russo-Japanese War and were intended in particular to protect large warships from the attacks of torpedo boats, hence their original names - countermines or fighter jets. In other European languages, the second version is still used (English destroyer) and does not contradict common sense at all. In the Russian Navy, the term "fighter" was in motion for some time, but it did not take root - the destroyer was deemed more appropriate and euphonious.
Everything was fine, as long as the main weapon of destroyers were mines, more precisely - self-propelled mines (torpedoes). However, with the adoption of KSSC cruise missiles and the launching of the destroyer "Bedovy" (1958) armed with them, the semantic dissonance was clearly apparent. In 1966, all the missile destroyers (pr.56M and 57bis) were reclassified to large missile ships (DBK), but in just 10 years a new series of destroyers was started ").
With reference to the "Leader" with cruising displacement and a huge missile ammunition, the "destroyer" also completely hurts the rumor. Some justification in this case can serve as a reverent attitude of military seamen to the sea traditions. Well, or if the Navy Main Headquarters has decided to reserve a cruiser class for even larger ships than 23560, which sooner or later may be replaced by heavy nuclear missile cruisers 11442M Peter the Great and Admiral Nakhimov. ■
P.S. A month after the interview of Rakhmanov, in which he allegedly "abandoned" the Leaders, "Deputy Admiral V. Bursuk, the deputy head of the Navy, announced that the construction of new destroyers would begin soon (after 2020) (reference 21, the design stage is a "spoiled phone").