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Two new nuclear-powered submarines to Northern Fleet

Flag hoisting on the "Aleksander Nevsky". (Photo: Sevmash.ru)

In course of the last week of December, Russia’s Northern Fleet received two brand new submarines. One new Borey-class ballistic missile submarine and one new Yasen-class attack submarine were put on duty in Russian Arctic waters before year-end.

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On December 23 the second of Russia’s new Borey-class ballistic missile submarines “Aleksander Nevsky” entered service. The flag hoisting ceremony at the Sevmash shipyard in Severodvinsk was attended by Minister of Defense Sergey Shoygu, the shipyard’s web site reads.

The first submarine of the class, the “Yury Dolgoruky”, was commissioned into the Northern Fleet in January and arrived at the fleet’s main nuclear submarine base in Gadzhiyevo together with “Aleksander Nevsky” on Monday December 30.

The Borey is Russia’s first post-Soviet ballistic missile submarine class and will form the mainstay of the strategic submarine fleet, replacing aging Typhoon, Delta-3 and Delta-4 class boats. Russia plans to have eight Borey-class submarines in service by 2020.

The third vessel in the class, “Vladimir Monomakh”, is awaiting manufacturer’s acceptance trials.

Borey-class can carry sixteen Bulava missiles, each fitted with up to ten independently-targetable nuclear warheads.

Bulava, however, is yet to be declared fully operational, following a series of problem with test-firing.  The Borey class boats are likely to be restricted to carrying out secondary roles until the weapon is declared ready.

The 170 meters long and 13.5 meters wide submarine has a submerged displacement of 24,000 tons. It can dive to 400 meters and go 29 knots under water. It has a crew of 107 including 55 officers.

On December 30 “Severodvinsk”, the first of a total of eight Yasen-class (NATO name Graney) attack submarines to be ordered by the Russian navy was delivered by the Sevmash shipyard. The boat has been under construction since 1993 and will soon enter service in the Northern Fleet.

The second and third subs of the series, “Kazan” and “Novosibirsk”, are being built under the updated Project 885M Yasen-M design.

“Severodvinsk” has a submerged displacement of 13,800 tons, length of 119 meters, speed of 31 knots, and can dive to 600 meters. It has a crew of 90 including 32 officers.

Its main armament consists of 24 Oniks (SS-N-26) and Kalibr (SS-N-27) cruise missiles, self-guided torpedoes and mines.