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Russia to start development of nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in 2023 — source

The ship will have a nuclear energy unit and displacement of about 70,000 tonnes

MOSCOW, May 7. /TASS/. Research and development (R&D) work to create the first Russian nuclear-powered aircraft carrier will start in 2023; it was included in the state arms program. A source in the shipbuilding industry told TASS about it on Tuesday.

"R&D work on the new aircraft carrier was included in the operating state arms program by 2027 and will start in 2023," the source said.

He specified that "the ship will have a nuclear energy unit and displacement of about 70,000 tonnes." The source did not specify the estimate cost of the work and the period of the ship’s construction.

The United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) told TASS that they "haven’t received any design specifications for the given ship from the Russian Defense Ministry yet." The corporation noted that it did not stop the development of proposals on advanced ships, including the aircraft carrier. "In case of receiving an order from the Defense Ministry, the corporation’s enterprises will be ready to implement it," the USC added.

The Russian Navy earlier stated that the Russian fleet expects to receive an advanced aircraft carrier with a nuclear energy unit by late 2030. The Defense Ministry noted that the contract to build the aircraft carrier may be signed by late 2025.

The Russian fleet currently has one aircraft carrier - the heavy oil-fueled aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov. It is being repaired and upgraded to rejoin the fleet in 2021. The Soviet Union started the construction of the Ulyanovsk nuclear aircraft carrier in Nikolayev, but the dissolution of the country led to the suspension of this work, and the partially built hull was disassembled.