Russia Starts Repairing Nuclear Submarines after 5-year Wait

Photo for illustration purposes.
An aerial starboard bow view of a Russian Navy Northern Fleet DELTA IV class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine underway on the surface.

A repair project for two Russian vessels – the Project 949A nuclear-powered submarine Irkutsk and the Project 971 nuclear-powered underwater cruiser Magadan – has started in the Zvezda Ship Repair Center in the Russian Far East, reported.

The two submarines are in service with Russia’s Pacific Fleet, the Zvezda press office reported on Tuesday.

“Planned works are underway on the Irkutsk to detect and repair faults in the ship’s fittings, general ship assemblies and rudder gear. The Magadan has been examined and works on it will begin in the immediate future,” the statement says.

A technical project is ready for upgrading the Irkutsk’s hull. It has been drawn up by engineers of the Rubin Central Design Bureau for Marine Engineering (part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation), the press office said.

“The nuclear-powered submarine Irkutsk is due to be delivered [to the Navy] in 2022,” the statement says.

The Irkutsk sub has been waiting for its repairs and upgrade at the Zvezda Shipyard since 2013 and the Magadan underwater cruiser since 2014.

Russia continues to invest in nuclear-powered submarines – in May it launched what it bills as the longest nuclear submarine ever built at a ceremony in the Arctic port of Severodvinsk.

The Belgorod, as the submarine is called, is 184 meters long, and will be capable of carrying six warhead-tipped “Poseidon” drones – one of Russia’s newest weapons that have been dubbed “doomsday weapons” by the international press.