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ST. PETERSBURG, July 28. /TASS/. The first two Project 636.3 Varshavyanka-class diesel-electric submarines, the Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and the Volkhov, were laid down for Russia’s Pacific Fleet at the Admiralty Shipyard in St. Petersburg on Friday.
The keel-laying plaques were installed in a ceremony on the eve of Russia’s Navy Day attended by Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov and Leningrad Region Head Alexander Drozdenko.
"The keel-laying ceremony is taking place on the eve of Navy Day. It is traditional to lay down or float out ships and boats on days coinciding with celebrations. And, most importantly, this is a step towards increasing the country’s defense capability," the deputy defense minister said.
Over the past few years, the Admiralty Shipyard has built several warships for the Black Sea Fleet, which are operational there now, ensuring stability in the Black Sea," the deputy defense minister said.
The first of six Project 636.3 Varshavyanka-class diesel-electric submarines being built for the Pacific Fleet will be delivered to the Navy in November 2019, Admiralty Shipyard CEO Alexander Buzakov said at the keel-laying ceremony.
"Hydraulic units have been installed on the first submarine, the Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, and it will be delivered to the customer on November 25, 2019," he said.
The Project 636.3 (Varshavyanka-class) covers the third generation of diesel-electric submarines that are among the most noiseless underwater cruisers in the world.
They are capable of developing a surface speed of up to 20 knots and dive to a depth of 300 meters. They have a cruising capacity of 45 days and a crew of 52.
The Project 636.3 submarine displaces about 4,000 tonnes in its underwater position.
The first series of six such Project 636.3 Varshavyanka-class submarines have already been delivered to the Russian Black Sea Fleet.
The six Varshavyanka-class submarines for the Pacific Fleet are planned to be built before 2022.
The Sevmash Shipyard in north Russia has laid down the seventh Yasen-M Project nuclear-powered submarine named after the city of Ulyanovsk, the shipyard’s press office reported on Friday.
The keel-laying ceremony was timed to coincide with Russia’s Navy Day. A special plaque with the ship’s name and its keel-laying date was attached to the future ship’s laying-down section. The ceremony was attended by Russian Navy Deputy Commander-in-Chief for Armament Vice-Admiral Viktor Bursuk.
"The Yasen-M-class warships have already proven their reliability in practice. That is why, the Navy will be waiting for this submarine. We hope that the Sevmash personnel’s professionalism will make it possible to deliver the submarine strictly on schedule and its crew will serve aboard it safely and for Russia’s glory," Bursuk said at the ceremony of laying out the Ulyanovsk nuclear submarine.
United Shipbuilding Corporation Vice-President Valery Fyodorov added that Sevmash workers had always coped with the most difficult tasks assigned by the Navy.
"This can be proved by the Yasen-and Borey-class subs that are now on combat duty in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. I’m confident that the sub will be floated out on schedule while the United Shipbuilding Corporation with its contractors from associated industries will ensure the delivery of all the required equipment so that the construction cycle can be completed on time," Fyodorov said.
Governor of the northern Arkhangelsk Region Igor Orlov said that the keel-laying of the nuclear submarine Ulyanovsk opened "a very important page in Sevmash’s history."
"I’m especially pleased that this event [the keel-laying of the nuclear sub Ulyanovsk] is taking place in the year of celebrating the 80th anniversary of the Arkhangelsk Region… I’m confident that all those who will be creating this ship will accomplish all their tasks on time and with the proper quality," the governor said.
The Yasen-class fourth-generation multipurpose nuclear submarine was developed in the 1990s by the St. Petersburg-based Malakhit Design Bureau of Maritime Machine-Building.
The submarine is based on the Projects 705(K) Lira and 971 Shchuka-B. Sevmash, which is located in Severodvinsk in the Arkhangelsk Region and is part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation, is the shipyard engaged in the construction of Yasen-class submarines.
The Project 885 Yasen-class submarine is designed to destroy an enemy’s submarines and surface ships, naval bases, ports, naval task forces and other targets. Apart from torpedoes, the sub’s armament incudes Oniks and Kalibr cruise missiles.
The Russian Navy currently operates only one Yasen-class multipurpose submarine, the Severodvinsk. The Russian Navy received this sub in the summer of 2014 but the underwater cruiser underwent operational evaluation until the spring of 2016.
The other submarines of this series are being built under the modernized Project 885M (08851) Yasen-M. They are characterized by the optimized hull shape and upgraded electronic warfare and automation systems.