The Kazan submarine sailing out from Severodvinsk on a test voyage. Photo: Oleg Kuleshov

Russia's most high-tech multi-purpose nuclear sub further delayed

The first upgraded cruise missile submarine of the Yasen-M class, the Kazan, will for unknown reasons have to sail another test-voyage before being handed over to the Northern Fleet.
March 03, 2021


New date for possible handover is set for May-June 2021, TASS reports with a source in the military-industrial complex. The state-affiliated news agency is known voicing military insights, but also for sugarcoating facts.

Another factory sea trial is planned, to be followed by an audit of the components and mechanisms, the source said without elaborating on which technical design flaws are to be fixed this time.

The “Kazan” was expected to be handed over from the submarine builder Sevmash yard to the Northern Fleet last Friday.

“The lead nuclear submarine “Kazan” can be handed over to the Russian Navy on February 26, the head of the United Shipbuilding Corporation, Aleksey Rakhmanov told RIA Novosti as late as on February 10.

Why the prestigeous submarine is hold back for more testing is unkown.

On Wednesday, the press service of the Navy said Commander-in-Chief, Admiral Nikolai Evmenov made a visit to the Sevmash yard “to check the progress of nuclear submarines building.”

Since first scheduled for delivery to the navy in 2017, the submarine has been notoriously delayed. A planned delivery in 2018 was postponed to 2019. That year came with another announcement that the “Kazan” would probably need all of 2020 to fix a number of auxiliary parts and assemblies which did not met the tactical and technical requirements set by the Ministry of Defense, the Barents Observer reported at the time.

Northern Fleet commander, Vice-Admiral Aleksandr Moiseev said in an interview with the Defense Ministry’s own newspaper, Krasnaya Zvezda, last December that the submarine would complete all factory sea trials by the end of 2020. 

In Soviet and Russian military construction traditions, many submarines are delivered to the navy by the end of a year in order to fulfill the Kremlin-approved state armament plans.

The Kazan multi-purpose submarine in the White Sea. Photo: Sevmash



Construction of “Kazan” started back in 2009. The submarine is the first serial production of Yasen-M class and differs  from the prototype “Severodvinsk” submarine by more digital and advanced control systems.

The Yasen-M class multi-purpose nuclear-powered submarines will carry the advanced sea version of the cruise missiles Kalibr, Oniks and likely the hypersonic Zircon, as well as torpedoes and surface-to-air missiles.

Other vessels of the class currently under construction at the Sevmash yard include “Novosibirsk”, “Arkhangelsk”, “Krasnoyarsk”, “Perm”, “Ulyanovsk”, “Voronezh” and “Vladivostok.”

The “Kazan” is likely to be based in Zapadnaya Litsa, the Northern Fleet’s westernmost submarine base near the border to Norway. Here, the prototype submarine “Severodvinsk” has homeport. 





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