The new mega-interview with Krivoruchko:
Russia's weapons are ahead of their time
The plans for the modernization of the RF Armed Forces are carried out in any conditions.
The army and navy are rearming at a rapid pace. Development of new types of weapons is underway, advanced models are being tested. Troops and forces are receiving new Strategic Missile Forces complexes, ships, aircraft, air defense systems, missile and artillery complexes, armored combat vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles for various purposes ... About this, as well as other successes in improving the domestic weapons system in the outgoing year and Alexey KRIVORUCHKO, Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation, tells about plans for the future.
- Alexey Yuryevich, what are the results of the 2020 state defense order?
- At the end of the current year, the tasks of the state defense order have been fully placed, and the plans for the supply and repair of weapons and military equipment have been implemented by 99.8 percent, which, in principle, is an excellent indicator.
In the current year, the military missions of the Russian Ministry of Defense accepted about 2,700 basic weapons and more than 52,500 units of support equipment.
At present, 147 units of aviation equipment have been delivered to the troops, the first reconnaissance and strike complexes with UAVs "Inokhodets" and "Forpost", seven warships and two submarines, over 1,500 models of armored vehicles, as well as more than 300 units of rocket and artillery weapons and more than 150 samples of air defense equipment.
This year, the President of the Russian Federation supported the initiative of the Russian Ministry of Defense under the Advanced Financing Program, the main goal of which was to reduce the delivery time for weapons samples and prevent an increase in their cost.
The scheme is being implemented both for the supply of ships of the far sea zone and aviation equipment, and for the armament of general-purpose forces and high-precision weapons.
As a result of the implementation of the program, it is planned to build 18 surface ships and submarines (including 15 units in excess of the main indicators of GPV-2027). At the same time, 16 ships are currently under construction and 19 are being modernized, 6 corvettes are planned from 2021, and the total number of ships under construction will reach 41 units.
As for aviation technology, by the end of 2024, 94 aircraft and helicopters will be delivered ahead of schedule, including 22 Su-57 aircraft.
The planned indicators of procurement of modern samples, including through advanced financing, will ensure the achievement of the share of modern weapons and military equipment in permanent readiness units by the end of 2024 to the level of 75.9 percent, which is significantly higher than the parameters laid down in the previous plans.
By the end of 2024, early deliveries of 94 aircraft and helicopters will be provided, including 22 Su-57 aircraft.
- Tell us about the main directions of the rearmament of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in 2021 and plans for the future.
- The priority tasks of equipping the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, which are solved through the state defense order, have been determined. Among them - complex re-equipment with modern systems and models of weapons; improvement of the technical equipment of the Armed Forces through the modernization of existing weapons; creation of multipurpose weapons and the development of nuclear deterrent forces, aerospace defense systems, communications, reconnaissance and control systems, electronic warfare, complexes with unmanned aerial vehicles, robotic strike systems, modern transport aviation, precision weapons and means of combating them, as well as personal protection systems for military personnel.
Long-term plans for the rearmament of the Armed Forces will be implemented within the framework of the current state armament program for 2024–2033.
The focus will be on the timely completion of state tests and the adoption of samples that determine the appearance of promising weapons systems.
At the same time, the main efforts are concentrated on completing experimental design work on the creation of promising weapons and military equipment for the Ground Forces and the Air Force, putting them into serial production and then ensuring the required rates of re-equipment of troops.
The measures taken to restructure the research complex of the Russian Ministry of Defense are aimed, among other things, at ensuring the completion in 2022 of the creation of a promising T-14 tank, infantry fighting vehicles (T-15, B-11, K-17), armored personnel carriers (B-10, K-16), armored repair and recovery vehicle (T-16) (ROC "Armata", "Kurganets-25" and "Boomerang"), 152-mm self-propelled artillery (ROC "Coalition-SV"), as well as a whole a line of advanced combat modules for equipping tracked and wheeled vehicles.
To reduce the delivery time of promising samples to the troops, their production will be carried out before the completion of tests after confirming the specified characteristics and conducting approbations in conditions close to combat.
Starting next year, it is planned to increase the supply of modern aircraft and high-precision long-range weapons, the annual construction of six ships of various classes and displacement at domestic shipyards, as well as the purchase of complexes with UAVs in reconnaissance and strike performance.
Already, measures are underway to further increase the purchase of Su-57 aircraft, the results of which will be taken into account in the new state armament program.
Next year it is planned to complete tests and adopt the S-500 anti-aircraft missile system and the Voronezh meter-range radar station.
In 2021, the rate of equipping with new types of weapons and those that have undergone repairs with modernization will remain at the same level.
- The priority area of development of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation is the modernization of the Strategic Nuclear Forces. What has been done in this area in the past year, what tasks have been set for the next?
- The rearmament of the Strategic Nuclear Forces is carried out in three components: ground, sea and air.
The rearmament of six missile divisions with fifth-generation missile systems has already been completed, and this work is continuing in four more. At the same time, at least 95 percent of the launchers are continuously in combat readiness.
The development priorities are the rearmament of the advanced mobile and stationary missile systems Yars and Avangard, which have improved anti-missile defense capabilities, as well as the creation of the newest complex with the Sarmat heavy missile. I would like to note that today the Sarmat missile throw tests have been completed with a positive result. In the near future, we will begin flight tests of this missile system.
The development of the naval component provides for the construction and commissioning of nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines of the Borei-A project with the simultaneous creation of infrastructure for their basing, as well as the extension of the service life of existing strategic missile submarines.
The construction of four cruisers of this project is underway, two more will be laid within the framework of a new state contract concluded this year.
The air component of the triad is planned to be improved by ensuring the delivery of Tu-160 strategic missile carriers. Today, measures for their production are being implemented, state contracts have been concluded, and next year we plan to start receiving them into the troops.
The implementation of the delivery programs will make it possible to increase the number of these aircraft by more than 50 percent in the next seven years. Further build-up of the fleet of aviation complexes is planned under the new state armament program for 2024–2033.
Work continues on the deep modernization of the Tu-95MS strategic missile carriers for the use of the latest weapons. Work is underway to create promising long-range air-launched cruise missiles and hypersonic aircraft missiles.
- Alexey Yurievich, what are the immediate and future tasks of the Navy's shipbuilding program?
- The development of the Navy is one of the equipment priorities, which is primarily implemented within the framework of the construction of ships in the far sea zone and new diesel-electric submarines.
Under the leadership of the President of the Russian Federation, two universal amphibious assault ships of a new project with a displacement of 40 thousand tons each were laid.
Under the current conditions, to ensure the pace of equipping the Navy, a number of government contracts are also being implemented using advanced financing mechanisms, which will ensure the supply of ships one to three years ahead of schedule.
This year, the Navy included a Project 955A nuclear submarine "Knyaz Vladimir", a diesel-electric submarine "Volkhov", a large landing ship "Pyotr Morgunov", corvettes of Project 20380 "Hero of the Russian Federation Aldar Tsydenzhapov", project 20385 "Thundering" and others.
In total, in accordance with the current state armament program until 2027, the transfer of 14 nuclear submarines of the Borey-A and Yasen-M projects is envisaged.
The tests of the missile armament complex with the Zircon hypersonic cruise missile are underway. So, in 2020, a number of successful launches of the Zircon missile complex from the frigate Admiral Gorshkov were carried out, and starting from 2022 their serial delivery will begin.
The annual purchase of Onyx anti-ship cruise missiles and Caliber sea-based cruise missiles continues.
- Recently, everyone has heard of the development of weapons based on new physical principles. What can you tell us about the work in this direction?
- Within the framework of the Concept for the Creation of Kinetic Weapons, the Russian Ministry of Defense, together with leading industrial enterprises, is developing high-tech weapons.
As you know, on March 1, 2018, the President of the Russian Federation, in the framework of the Address to the Federal Assembly, presented the newest Peresvet laser complex among the breakthrough weapon systems. Since the end of 2019, all Peresvet complexes have been on alert.
Currently, work is underway to create other laser systems to counter unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as optical and optical-electronic means of the enemy. They are being integrated with the fire weapons of armored vehicles to combat attacking high-precision weapons.
The development of a radio frequency complex for the functional destruction of electronic equipment of unmanned aerial vehicles is underway.
Starting next year, it is planned to increase purchases of complexes with UAVs
in reconnaissance and strike performance
- The creation and equipping of troops with robotic systems, including complexes with unmanned aerial vehicles, is a priority task in the construction and development of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. How much has the UAV functionality expanded?
- In order to increase the capabilities of our troops to carry out the tasks at hand, the creation of complexes with multifunctional unmanned aerial vehicles of various classes is being completed, capable of solving problems as part of groups or "swarms" in cooperation with manned aircraft, as well as in conjunction with ground and sea robotic complexes.
This primarily concerns the use of small unmanned aerial vehicles. The use of such UAVs is firmly established in practice and today has become an everyday event. Complexes with UAVs of various types and purposes are now being equipped with military formations in all types and branches of the Russian army, as well as troops that are not included in the types and branches of troops, from tactical to strategic levels. Corresponding units and services have been created, special training of personnel has been organized, repairs and maintenance of equipment are being carried out.
The troops have already received the first samples of complexes with medium-range reconnaissance and strike unmanned aerial vehicles and patrolling ammunition, which are being successfully tested in combat conditions.
The unmanned aerial vehicles created to equip our army are capable of performing missions in the face of countermeasures by the enemy's radio electronic means and air defense systems.
In addition, they are equipped not only with systems ensuring the performance of reconnaissance and strike missions, but also with equipment for performing special missions, including in the interests of using high-precision air, sea and land-based weapons.
The tasks solved by such UAVs are constantly expanding. If at the initial stage small-sized UAVs were used for optoelectronic reconnaissance, now they are performing the tasks of electronic warfare, relaying communications, delivering cargo, providing target designation to guided weapons, and even strike missions.
The widespread use of small-sized UAVs can significantly reduce the consumption of ammunition to destroy targets, increase the flexibility and efficiency of the use of artillery.
At the same time, they are integrated into a single reconnaissance and information space, which ensures that information about the ground, surface and air situation is brought to the control bodies in real time, which is necessary for making operational decisions when commanding troops and using weapons.
Currently, great importance is attached to the development of large-size attack UAVs. First of all, the existing complexes with UAVs "Altius", "Paceman" and "Outpost" are equipped with guided weapons. Testing these complexes in real conditions using small-sized homing ammunition has shown their high efficiency.
On their basis, enterprises are currently developing reconnaissance and strike complexes of a new generation, equipped with weapons and satellite communications. These aircraft will go to flight tests in 2021, followed by mass production and delivery to the troops.
By the end of 2021, complexes with long-range and long-range multifunctional drones will be supplied to equip the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, which will be armed with both guided aviation weapons used on operational-tactical aviation aircraft, and specialized ammunition. Their use will make it possible to deliver pinpoint strikes not only against stationary, but also against moving enemy targets.
The development of small-sized guided bombs and missiles is nearing completion, prototypes of which are already being tested in the army; they will also go into production from next year.
As for the opinion that the developed low-speed UAVs with screw engines are outdated, it is controversial.
The functionality of the complex is determined by the presence on board the appropriate means of reconnaissance and destruction, the quality and security of the data transmission channel, the use of elements of artificial intelligence. In these parameters, as well as in flight and technical characteristics, the "Pacer" is a modern carrier.
At the same time, when developing domestic unmanned systems, one of the tasks is import independence. Therefore, we make the most of our own capabilities to ensure not only high performance of UAVs, their systems and equipment, but also the possibility of their serial production and repair, and this complicates the task at the development stage.
In conclusion, I would like to note that the UAV complexes, created by order of the Russian Ministry of Defense, are planned to be used not only in the interests of defense and security, but also in the socio-economic development of Russia in the spheres of transport, agriculture and others.
A promising direction in the development of unmanned aircraft is expanding the range of tasks solved using complexes with UAVs, increasing their flight performance, equipping long-range enemy targets with reconnaissance and fire destruction means, introducing elements of artificial intelligence into the control system of unmanned aerial vehicles, integrating UAVs into a single airspace with manned aircraft.