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    Upgraded Kirov class: Project 11442 [Admiral Nakhimov]

    Big_Gazza
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    Post  Big_Gazza Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:49 am

    PapaDragon wrote:They have to keep it painted in order to keep it from decomposing before it gets scrapped

    You don't want reactor collapsing into the ocean

    Bullshit.  If that is the case, why haven't they done the same for the Kirov/Ushakov?  She has been tied up for the best part of 30 years in reserve and has never seen a dry-dock in all that time.

    The fact is that the 1144s were built to last, her hulls metallurgy is excellent, and the Lazarev has been mothballed with adequate preservation to allow her to be re-activated and rebuilt should the need arise.  The only real question is whether the Russian Navy needs her.  That question has never been fully resolved (despite the many and varied public announcments), and it seems clear now that the final decision will not be made until Nahkimov is back in service and the Navy can fully evaluate her and arrive at a demonstrable cost/benefit evaluation.

    If Nahkimov is deemed a technical success (and lessons have been learned during her modernisation that can be applied to speed up future conversions) then I have no problem believing they may reactivate Lazarev and leave PtG till last.  The Lider destroyer has been deferred, so that adds impetus to retaining the older 1144s.

    The fact that some people can't accept this logic says more about their own incapacity to admit errors of judgement than it does about the physical condition of these vessels or the changing threat environment that influences their eventual fate.
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    Post  hoom Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:29 am

    Not sure what to do with it in 2014 when Putin was coming to inspect does not mean they're still not sure what to do with it in 2020.

    Nakhimov proved to be in significantly worse shape than they thought, its been multiply delayed & cost a lot more than expected to the point at least one upper end navy type openly pondered cancelling all the planned upgrades & spending the $$$ on new current in-build ships.
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    Post  william.boutros Mon Sep 21, 2020 12:04 pm

    hoom wrote:Not sure what to do with it in 2014 when Putin was coming to inspect does not mean they're still not sure what to do with it in 2020.

    Nakhimov proved to be in significantly worse shape than they thought, its been multiply delayed & cost a lot more than expected to the point at least one upper end navy type openly pondered cancelling all the planned upgrades & spending the $$$ on new current in-build ships.

    They do need ocean going ships one way or another.
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    Post  GarryB Mon Sep 21, 2020 12:25 pm

    As I have mentioned it is an opportunity to test new reactors and perhaps even all electric propulsion systems, not to mention new large radar sensors and equipment that only their biggest ships will carry so they can get a bit of experience and training with the big systems they will need for their cruisers and destroyers... and indeed any new aircraft carriers.
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    Post  Big_Gazza Mon Sep 21, 2020 2:04 pm

    hoom wrote:Nakhimov proved to be in significantly worse shape than they thought, its been multiply delayed & cost a lot more than expected to the point at least one upper end navy type openly pondered cancelling all the planned upgrades & spending the $$$ on new current in-build ships.

    Authoritative sources pls?  Some anonymous officer "openly pondered"??  Big deal.  We all know how this game is played.  Everyone with a hidden agenda gives their narratives to the media and some ignorant hack chooses to give them a platform.  Without trustworthy sources (eg a statement from Shoigu) its all just a load of chatter around the office water cooler.

    Here's another scenario.  Changes in requirements during the build, and poorly-performing sub-contractors who don't deliver on time and who submit endless claims for cost variations. Add to that the usual unknowns involved in ship rebuilds or major upgrades that ALWAYS occur on similar sized projects. Meh, this sort of rebuild is hard work and technically complex, and its easy for the uninvolved critics to slag off from the sidelines, but it will be worth it.

    Lets see what happens when the Nahkimov is finished.  Unless of course the navy actually signs a contract for scrapping the Lazarev, but so far that hasn't happened, and i don't expect it will yet.

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    Post  kvs Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:01 pm

    The only reason the Lazerv is not being actively modernized is because of budget constraints. That's right, these days budget expenditures in Russia
    are constrained. This was not an issue during the USSR period, but there were other serious problems instead.

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    Post  Big_Gazza Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:07 pm

    kvs wrote:The only reason the Lazerv is not being actively modernized is because of budget constraints.   That's right, these days budget expenditures in Russia
    are constrained.   This was not an issue during the USSR period, but there were other serious problems instead.


    100%, and budget constraints are not a sign of a "stagnant economy" like the usual gang of Western fuktards are constantly accusing Russia of having. They are the signs of responsible financial governance. Thats why Russia has 600B of forex reserves and gold at her command, enough to pay down her entire public and corporate debt, while the exceptional Western nations (including Or-strayl-ya) all drown in a sea of red ink.
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    Post  Big_Gazza Wed Nov 04, 2020 2:15 pm

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    Post  mnztr Sat Nov 07, 2020 7:29 am

    kvs wrote:The only reason the Lazerv is not being actively modernized is because of budget constraints.   That's right, these days budget expenditures in Russia
    are constrained.   This was not an issue during the USSR period, but there were other serious problems instead.


    I don't agree. The whole Kirov expansion program is somewhat experimental. A lot if it is being developed ad hoc. The combat systems are probably based on the Gorhskov class, and we can see what problems that had. One of the key weapons Tsirkon is just starting flight trials. So yeah money IS a consideration, but at the outset no one knew for sure what the result will be and we still don't. If the result is less then stellar, it will be the only one. If it turns out really well, expect then it will be executed as program on the rest of the ships.
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    Post  Big_Gazza Sat Nov 07, 2020 10:36 am

    The only "ad-hoc" components of the modernization is the technical specifics of the rebuild. These projects are COMPLEX and its impossible to have fully comprehensive technical documentation in place for fully scope the works required. When the Nahkimov went into dry dock there would have been no detailed design but a list of requirements from the government, a scope of works type document, mostly descriptive and lacking in specifics. The workpacks for actual work is prepared by the shipyard, and only after the affected areas are inspected and assessed, and the detailed structural, mechanical, and electrical/instrumentation designs are developed. I've been involved in shipyard campaigns and its a lengthy and rather unrefined process. Contrary to what the average Joe might think, there is no pre-prepared master set of "blueprints" to work from.

    Problems with the Gorshkov was simply the usual teething issues that could be expected from a completely new generation of weapons and sensors and systems. All ships of a new generation suffer these sorts of problems, and the 22350s had to cope with the additional issues of a lack of engines (due to Ukropi trechery) plus an MIC that was still in the process of rebuilding itself following the post-breakup meltdown. Given Russias problems since 1991, I think they have done remarkably well to this point, and they have certainly surpassed the expectations (delusions) of their Western adversaries.

    Credit needs to be given where it is due.

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    Post  mnztr Sat Nov 07, 2020 6:53 pm

    You have to remember the Kirovs are pretty old, so the design needs to be digitized before design can begin. Also as you mentioned the pandoras box needs to be opened. Then over a very lengthy project like this all kinds of opportunities arise to improve the project, so when reconditioning is taking longer, then other opportunities arise, better missiles, better electronics. Why load up with Kaliber when Tsirkon is almost ready? S500 is coming, better radar ETC. After all this ship is a showcase as well as a weapon. Basic weapons spaces are defined but what is to be done with these spaces is always under discussion iin this type of project.

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    Post  Isos Sat Nov 07, 2020 7:18 pm

    You are quite late. They already did that and have almost finished to modernize one.

    S-500 isn't needed for the navy. That's a land vased system for protecting against strategic weapons.

    S-400 with 40N6, 48N6 and 9M96 in one unified VLS is what they need.
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    Post  mnztr Sun Nov 08, 2020 4:54 am

    Isos wrote:You are quite late. They already did that and have almost finished to modernize one.

    S-500 isn't needed for the navy. That's a land vased system for protecting against strategic weapons.

    S-400 with 40N6, 48N6 and 9M96 in one unified VLS is what they need.

    I don't think its remotely close to finished yet. The hard part has just started
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    Post  lancelot Sun Nov 08, 2020 6:57 am

    mnztr wrote:You have to remember the Kirovs are pretty old, so the design needs to be digitized before design can begin. Also as you mentioned the pandoras box needs to be opened. Then over a very lengthy project like this all kinds of opportunities arise to improve the project, so when reconditioning is taking longer, then other opportunities arise, better missiles, better electronics. Why load up with Kaliber when Tsirkon is almost ready? S500 is coming, better radar ETC. After all this ship is a showcase as well as a weapon. Basic weapons spaces are defined but what is to be done with these spaces is always under discussion iin this type of project.

    Right. I would also add that nuclear reactors used to be designed with the idea of lasting around 30 years. With modern upgrades they can last up to 60 years at best. The older Kirovs are like 40 years old by now. I doubt they still have much reactor life in them. Even if all it takes is a reactor refurbishment to get them operational when you consider all the changes needed to make the design modern like changing all the cabling, electronics, sensors, weapon systems, etc it makes you wonder if it wouldn't be simpler just to build a new hull. They can build a Project 22220 icebreaker in 6-7 years. How long has the Admiral Nakhimov been in this upgrade process? Mind you I think upgrading one or two ships to use as laboratories to develop the weapon systems is still viable, but doing this to the whole fleet is more questionable.
    I think post 2023, when the last Project 22220 icebreaker is launched, and the RITM-400 reactor is finished and the shipyards at St. Pete are empty, then we will see the nuclear cruiser program back on the table.

    I think mentioning the S500 in a Russian naval design might not make that much sense because the launchers are supposed to be huge. It is an anti-ICBM weapon like THAAD not an anti-aircraft weapon.
    I think what they need is a naval S400 and lots and lots of cruise missiles. Preferably in a unified launcher format so that the enemy won't know if you're carrying a land attack or air defense load.

    YMMV.
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    Post  GarryB Sun Nov 08, 2020 10:22 am

    S-500 isn't needed for the navy. That's a land vased system for protecting against strategic weapons.

    The S-500 will be at the core of the IADS they develop for their carrier groups... it will likely develop into the weapon that shoots down American Zircons when they are ready for active service... they will also defeat any ballistic weapon they might come up with based on IRBM or SLBM designs similar to Chinese anti carrier missiles.

    It would also allow a Russian carrier group to be sent to a location mid flight path for western ICBMs and SLBMs and enable them to get shots at warheads as they fly past.

    The only "ad-hoc" components of the modernization is the technical specifics of the rebuild. These projects are COMPLEX and its impossible to have fully comprehensive technical documentation in place for fully scope the works required.

    They have developed modular weapon systems for all their vessels and also modular sensors and electronic equipment, but it will be a while before they can design and build the custom designed new large ships. In the mean time they have old ships that were in no way intended to carry the new modular weapons and sensors and equipment.

    They can either make it a stopgap and therefore essentially fit Gorshkov level stuff, or they can further develop the enlarged arrays and sensors that would be going on their new large ships along with extra weapons launchers over the number fitted to smaller vessels.

    Obviously it will take a bit of work to work out how to cram standardised weapons and sensors into a ship that was never designed to take the, so the fit is not going to be snug and perfect, but getting these systems onto the ships and working makes them orders of magnitude more capable than the original vessels with their old gear.

    Testing new gear like 152mm artillery guns as well as perhaps Pantsir and improved TOR and perhaps even a few 57mm gun turrets, as well as lots of vertical launch missile systems for TOR and Redut and UKSK means an enormous variety of weapons can be carried, and new much bigger weapon sensors like large radar arrays can be tested on a real ship. New propulsion options can be tested too... the ship with the problematic reactor... take it out and put in a new system that will be used on new ships so it gets testing before the new cruisers are even laid down.

    Modifying and testing these old cruisers will give them experience with the modular weapons in larger numbers and bigger sensors and perhaps new reactors with better performance... if it works well then the existing complex system could be replaced and made into a pure nuclear powered ship that is faster and with more available power all the time and of course able to get places much faster with less material needed to support it operationally.

    They want to go to nuclear power for the destroyers and new cruisers and carriers so this is a chance to test them out for real...

    Right. I would also add that nuclear reactors used to be designed with the idea of lasting around 30 years. With modern upgrades they can last up to 60 years at best.

    Actually modern designs could be created that run for 40 years without needing refuelling, which would make them much more affordable and much more desirable too.

    The older Kirovs are like 40 years old by now. I doubt they still have much reactor life in them. Even if all it takes is a reactor refurbishment to get them operational when you consider all the changes needed to make the design modern like changing all the cabling, electronics, sensors, weapon systems, etc it makes you wonder if it wouldn't be simpler just to build a new hull.

    Even if they started building a brand new cruiser tomorrow it would be 10 years before it would hit the water and that assumes the design is finalised now.

    Upgrading an old cruiser will not give you the same quality ship but the Kirovs are big so there is plenty of room... the British often had problems with their new ships because their newer weapons were often bigger and heavier than their old weapons and with more electronics and support systems they rapidly ran out of space. With these Soviet ships the replacement of 1980s electronics with 21st C electronics means replacing building sized main frames with laptop sized single rack computers that are 100 times more powerful than the old building sized systems. The main missiles have gone from 7.5 tons to 2.5 tons and everything is generally smaller and lighter. Improvements in cabling mean a bunch of wires the width of a rubbish bin lid can be replaced by fibre optics narrower than your wrist, yet the communications speed is 10,000 times faster in both directions.

    Right now they have some old ships or nothing... with the old ships they are big and available... they wont be as good as a scratch built newbuild cruiser, but they are better than nothing and offer an opportunity to test a range of new technologies and systems without worrying about a from scratch totally new design.

    They could develop it in stages... they could use the Lazarev and its wonky reactor as a propulsion testing ship and do some basic standard upgrades. On another ship they could try fitting super large super long range AESA radar arrays for operating S-500 missiles (the 2,500km range system that looks up into space for "targets")... how cool would it be to be sitting in the Atlantic Ocean tracking the ISS as it speeds over...

    They could have three different upgrade packages testing different things and when they have a bit of experience under their belts with these upgrades they can decide whether to apply each upgrade to the other two ships... when all the bugs are worked out from all three upgrades they should have some very capable ships and will be much better prepared to design a from scratch brand new cruiser replacement for them...

    I think mentioning the S500 in a Russian naval design might not make that much sense because the launchers are supposed to be huge. It is an anti-ICBM weapon like THAAD not an anti-aircraft weapon.

    THAAD is barely an Anti IRBM like weapon... S-300V and S-400 are both better systems already... S-500 will be much better... and necessary.

    It will be their defence from Zircon type weapons when they become available in the west.
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    Post  Isos Sun Nov 08, 2020 10:33 am

    mnztr wrote:

    I don't think its remotely close to finished yet. The hard part has just started

    What do you think they were doing during Nakhimov modernization. They of course developed the new systems. We will see them only when they put them on the ship. It's not because you don't see pics now that thry aren't ready.

    The S-500 will be at the core of the IADS they develop for their carrier groups... it will likely develop into the weapon that shoots down American Zircons when they are ready for active service... they will also defeat any ballistic weapon they might come up with based on IRBM or SLBM designs similar to Chinese anti carrier missiles.

    By the time they will have S-600 in service...
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    Post  mnztr Mon Nov 09, 2020 2:41 am

    Ya so you just expect they will throw it all in and flip the switch? lol. There is complex integration work to be done testing, reconfig etc etc Who knows how their plans may have changed since the hull took so long to recondition? There are also new emerging technologies they may want to add to "future proof" the ship.

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    Post  Big_Gazza Mon Nov 09, 2020 9:29 am

    lancelot wrote:
    mnztr wrote:You have to remember the Kirovs are pretty old, so the design needs to be digitized before design can begin. Also as you mentioned the pandoras box needs to be opened. Then over a very lengthy project like this all kinds of opportunities arise to improve the project, so when reconditioning is taking longer, then other opportunities arise, better missiles, better electronics. Why load up with Kaliber when Tsirkon is almost ready? S500 is coming, better radar ETC. After all this ship is a showcase as well as a weapon. Basic weapons spaces are defined but what is to be done with these spaces is always under discussion iin this type of project.

    Right. I would also add that nuclear reactors used to be designed with the idea of lasting around 30 years. With modern upgrades they can last up to 60 years at best. The older Kirovs are like 40 years old by now. I doubt they still have much reactor life in them. Even if all it takes is a reactor refurbishment to get them operational when you consider all the changes needed to make the design modern like changing all the cabling, electronics, sensors, weapon systems, etc it makes you wonder if it wouldn't be simpler just to build a new hull. They can build a Project 22220 icebreaker in 6-7 years. How long has the Admiral Nakhimov been in this upgrade process? Mind you I think upgrading one or two ships to use as laboratories to develop the weapon systems is still viable, but doing this to the whole fleet is more questionable.
    I think post 2023, when the last Project 22220 icebreaker is launched, and the RITM-400 reactor is finished and the shipyards at St. Pete are empty, then we will see the nuclear cruiser program back on the table.

    I think mentioning the S500 in a Russian naval design might not make that much sense because the launchers are supposed to be huge. It is an anti-ICBM weapon like THAAD not an anti-aircraft weapon.
    I think what they need is a naval S400 and lots and lots of cruise missiles. Preferably in a unified launcher format so that the enemy won't know if you're carrying a land attack or air defense load.

    YMMV.

    Reactor design life assumes that the reactors in question are operational over the projected lifespan.  Sitting at the pier tied up with the reactor shutdown for well over a decade doesn't use up reactor life (minimal neutron damage to the metallurgy).  The Nahkimov has decades of life left in her firebox, the others as well.

    BTW if reactors were limited to 30 years most of the US CVNs would be looking at decommissioning soon.  They aren't, and your pulling numbers out of the nether doesn't mean squat.
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    Post  GarryB Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:26 am

    The things they are developing for a cruiser upgrade will be designed to operate on cruisers... upgraded or new build.

    It is not like they will be putting in a special radar they never intend to use on anything ever again so the electric and data connections needed to make it work will be pretty standard and the battle management and net centric IADS system they fit to the upgraded cruisers will essentially be directly related but of course a much earlier version of whatever they will be putting into their new build cruisers they lay down in 5 or 10 years time.

    In terms of weapons systems they will be mostly the same as those fitted to smaller ships... they will just have a lot more modules than they could fit on smaller vessels, but because they will be fitting them where they can fit them there wont be as many as they will have on a custom designed cruiser... but that is no big deal.

    There will be integration problems but there are going to be development and integration problems anyway... might as well start working them out now. so they don't end up making mistakes like Ford or Zumwalt or LCS...

    They could certainly fit a 152mm gun mount and start working out the bugs and get some real on sea testing done... send it to Syria for some testing...
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    Post  lancelot Wed Nov 11, 2020 6:15 am

    Big_Gazza wrote:
    ...
    Reactor design life assumes that the reactors in question are operational over the projected lifespan.  Sitting at the pier tied up with the reactor shutdown for well over a decade doesn't use up reactor life (minimal neutron damage to the metallurgy).  The Nahkimov has decades of life left in her firebox, the others as well.

    BTW if reactors were limited to 30 years most of the US CVNs would be looking at decommissioning soon.  They aren't, and your pulling numbers out of the nether doesn't mean squat.

    They aren't. But like I said, while they can last longer it requires major refurbishment. Just search for "thermal annealing nuclear reactor".
    Russia dominates this technology also, they have done it in civilian nuclear reactors. But you need to put the reactor offline for a year or two at least.
    https://www.world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Rosatom-launches-annealing-technology-for-VVER-100

    What a lot of people forget though is that it takes time to ramp down a nuclear reactor. It is not instant on or off. Even if a ship is peer side it doesn't mean the reactor is offline.
    Also, a lot of those US carriers are in fact supposed to be decommissioned. One example is the Harry S. Truman. Which is about as old as some of the cruisers we are talking about.
    The cost of the overhaul of the ship and reactor is so high you might as well build a new ship. But then again that is with US private contractors.
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    Post  kvs Wed Nov 11, 2020 6:49 am

    The main issue with ship reactors is refueling. The refueling cycle is about 10 years.

    https://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/non-power-nuclear-applications/transport/nuclear-powered-ships.aspx

    This article claims that US carrier reactors last 50 years and submarine reactors last 30-40 years. That sounds about right.

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    Post  mnztr Wed Nov 11, 2020 6:53 am

    lancelot wrote:
    Big_Gazza wrote:
    ...
    Reactor design life assumes that the reactors in question are operational over the projected lifespan.  Sitting at the pier tied up with the reactor shutdown for well over a decade doesn't use up reactor life (minimal neutron damage to the metallurgy).  The Nahkimov has decades of life left in her firebox, the others as well.

    BTW if reactors were limited to 30 years most of the US CVNs would be looking at decommissioning soon.  They aren't, and your pulling numbers out of the nether doesn't mean squat.

    They aren't. But like I said, while they can last longer it requires major refurbishment. Just search for "thermal annealing nuclear reactor".
    Russia dominates this technology also, they have done it in civilian nuclear reactors. But you need to put the reactor offline for a year or two at least.
    https://www.world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Rosatom-launches-annealing-technology-for-VVER-100

    What a lot of people forget though is that it takes time to ramp down a nuclear reactor. It is not instant on or off. Even if a ship is peer side it doesn't mean the reactor is offline.
    Also, a lot of those US carriers are in fact supposed to be decommissioned. One example is the Harry S. Truman. Which is about as old as some of the cruisers we are talking about.
    The cost of the overhaul of the ship and reactor is so high you might as well build a new ship. But then again that is with US private contractors.

    No one in the public domain knows how much operational time that reactors has had. Its sat dormant for years and this ship was not heavily used.As far as I can tell the ship really only had 10 operational years. When they mothballed her, its possible the reactor was defulled or put into some sort of dormant state.
    LMFS
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    Post  LMFS Wed Nov 11, 2020 8:09 am

    kvs wrote:The main issue with ship reactors is refueling.  The refueling cycle is about 10 years.

    https://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/non-power-nuclear-applications/transport/nuclear-powered-ships.aspx

    This article claims that US carrier reactors last 50 years and submarine reactors last 30-40 years.  That sounds about right.


    In naval field apparently sometimes highly enriched fuel is used that allows to bring the refuelling cycle to 20 or 30 years, both US and Russia do this.
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    Post  mnztr Wed Nov 11, 2020 5:08 pm

    LMFS wrote:
    kvs wrote:The main issue with ship reactors is refueling.  The refueling cycle is about 10 years.

    https://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/non-power-nuclear-applications/transport/nuclear-powered-ships.aspx

    This article claims that US carrier reactors last 50 years and submarine reactors last 30-40 years.  That sounds about right.


    In naval field apparently sometimes highly enriched fuel is used that allows to bring the refuelling cycle to 20 or 30 years, both US and Russia do this.

    US CVNs have a mid life refuelling at 25 years but the new ones are good for 50 years, same with the new subs.
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    Post  GarryB Thu Nov 12, 2020 7:31 am

    Well the fact of the matter is that all four Kirov class cruisers had nuclear reactors. The two they seem certain to want to upgrade are the easiest picks because their reactors seem to be running fine.

    The Lazarev sounds like it had reactor problems, but think about it.

    Whether you scrap it completely or take the reactor out and replace it... you are going to have to deal with the old reactor.

    Whether you fix it or take it out and replace it or just take it out and scrap the ship you are going to have to take it out or continue using it.

    Presumably they have new NPP designs they intend to use in future destroyers and cruisers and aircraft carriers... hell, they use them in icebreakers.

    A compact NPP designed for military vessels that could also be used in subs would be a useful thing all round and a ship the size of the Lazarev is big enough to test one or two different designs at once.

    For the original design they lacked a reactor powerful enough to push a ship that size around at full speed so they needed a system to boost available power for high speed dashes... new more powerful reactors would be the best solution in terms of performance... preferably just two would be best in terms of battle damage reduction, and this would be an excellent chance to test some viable systems.

    At some stage you are going to have to develop new reactors anyway and this offers a chance to test and get some experience now.

    If it turns out to be a dog... well they don't need to keep it in service forever... it could get improved reactors fitted later to try to correct the problems... and if they work much better then those reactors could be used to upgrade the other two Kirov types, or used in Destroyers so they are laid down with mature tested propulsion systems at the least.

    With good design these new reactors could be good for 50 years operation with refuelling.

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