MOSCOW, May 13. /TASS/. The first six Project 12700 Alexandrit-class minesweepers will be equipped with the most advanced Aleksandrit-ISPUM underwater drones designated to fight explosive devices, CEO of the Research and Production Enterprise ‘Region’ (part of Tactical Missiles Corporation) Igor Krylov told TASS on Monday.
"We have signed contracts on the delivery of Aleksandrit-ISPUM systems for six Project 12700 mine countermeasures ships. The system has been installed on the lead ship Alexander Obukhov, the second minesweeper Ivan Antonov and is being delivered to the third minesweeper Georgy Kurbatov, which will soon be put afloat," the chief executive said.
The Russian Navy also wants Aleksandrit-ISPUM drones to be integrated into the weapons payload of minesweepers undergoing modernization, Krylov said.
"It should also be noted that the system can be integrated with foreign-made ships but this process is associated with certain difficulties," the chief executive noted.
The Aleksandrit-ISPUM will be supplemented by the PMO Diamant system integrated into the equipment of the first ships of this series, Krylov said. "The Diamant equipment supplements the Aleksandrit-ISPUM system by some non-core designations, performing only a part of mine-disposal weapons’ functions. However, if it is compared with the Aleksandrit-ISPUM, it becomes clear that our system has by a factor more functions," the chief executive stressed.
The results of the Diamant trials have shown that this system has interesting elements that could be included into the Alexandrit-ISPUM, Krylov noted.
"Work in this area is already underway. We believe that joint work with the Diamant has helped improve some characteristics of our system," the chief executive said.
The Research and Production Enterprise ‘Region’ is also developing the civilian version of the Aleksandrit-ISPUM drone.
"We are working in this area and trying to expand the range of underwater equipment this system can operate. These devices will make it possible, if necessary, to search for, detect and lift objects," the ‘Region’ chief executive said.