DATELINE: KALININGRAD July 24
The Russian Navy must decide as soon as possible on the completion of the third frigate of project 11540, chief designer Yakov Kushnerov has told Interfax
“The third hull of the frigate of project 11540 is now at Yantar shipyard in Kaliningrad. I believe that the Russian Navy must decide in principle as soon as possible on its completion,” he said.
“We will be lobbying the completion of the frigate not only at the Navy headquarters but also at a higher level arguing that in this way we will not only save impressive amounts for the country but also significantly improve the combat capability of the Baltic Fleet,” he said.
“If the third hull of project 11540 is completed, then together with the first ship Neustrashimy and the second Yaroslav Mudry it will form a very serious combat potential unparalleled in the Baltic Sea,” he said.
Kushnerov said that the third ship is 47% built. “Its condition can be described as ideal because it was launched only a year and a half ago,” he added.
About a month ago it was reported by Janes, citing a Russian navy source at the IMDS-2009 expo, that the Russian navy had decided not to take delivery of the third Project 11540 frigate and that the shipyard had been told to look for a foreign buyer for the unfinished boat. Well, apparently, the yard hasnt given up all hope of getting the Russian navy to buy they Tuman quite yet.
Claims that having 3 ships of this class will give the Russian navy an “unparalleled combat potential” in the Baltic are just laughable, especially since the lead shop of the class has never received a complement of Uran anti-ship missiles. I hope they do induct the Tuman just because its sad to see a hull languish uncompleted like that, but there is no hiding how dated a design the 11540′s are today. That said, the Russian navy is fielding plenty of even more dated ships. Considering some of the Krivaks still floating out there having the Tuman would be quite an improvement.