Russia to build several nuclear cruisers in the next several years. The construction of the first vessel of the project, the Leader, will commence in early 2018. It is planned to build eight vessels in total.
"Nuclear-powered cruisers are autonomous and well armed. They can face various challenges in any part of the world ocean. The Russian Navy has not placed orders for vessels of this class since 1989. The decision to build several ships means that Russia pursues geopolitical interests to maintain its presence in remote parts of the world," former deputy commander of the navy, Admiral Igor Kasatonov said.
The new ships will be equipped with missile and space defense means.
The Leader will become a universal vehicle, capable of replacing three classes of ships of the Russian Navy: destroyers, large antisubmarine ships and missile cruisers of Project 1144 "Orlan."
The Leader will be smaller than Project 1144 ships, but it will carry a lot more arms on board. The nuclear power plant will be able to operate on a single charge for several years, representative of the Krylov State Research Center in St. Petersburg, Valery Polovinkin told the Izvestia newspaper.
The new ship will have RITM-200 nuclear power plant - the same unit is installed on icebreakers of Project 22220. The new power-generating unit will let the Leader develop the speed of up to 30 knots. Her arms are expected to be comparable with those of US-made Arleigh Burke missile ships.
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