Russian submarine Yury Dolgorukiy (K-535)
Yury Dolgorukiy during sea trials
|Laid down:||2 November 1996|
|Launched:||13 February 2008|
|Commissioned:||10 January 2013|
|Status:||In active service|
|Class and type:||Borei-class submarine|
|Length:||170 m (557 ft 9 in)|
|Beam:||13.5 m (44 ft 3 in)|
|Draught:||10 m (32 ft 10 in)|
|Speed:||25 knots (46 km/h; 29 mph)|
|Complement:||130 officers and men|
K-535 Yuriy Dolgorukiy is the first Borei-class ballistic missile submarine of the Project 955 in service with the Russian Navy. Named after the founder of Moscow, Yuri Dolgoruki, the vessel was laid down on 2 November 1996 and was first planned to enter service in 2001. However, the R-39M missile that the Borei class was supposed to carry was abandoned after several failed tests, and the submarine was redesigned for the Bulava missile. The Bulava missile is smaller than the original R-39M, and in the 2007 START treaty data exchange it was reported that all Borei-class submarines would carry 16 missiles instead of 12, as originally intended. As of January 2013 the submarine is active with the Russian Navy.
On 15 April 2007 the submarine was rolled out of the construction hall into a launch dock in Severodvinsk, when the vessel was about 82% complete. The Russian government allocated nearly 5 billion rubles, or 40% of the Navy's 2007 weapons budget, for the completion of the submarine.
There was some speculation that Yuriy Dolgorukiy would be rushed through the rest of the production and testing phases in order to be ready for the 2008 Russian presidential elections. Much of the vessel's equipment remained uninstalled and untested, a process that would normally take over a year to complete.
On 13 February 2008 Yuriy Dolgorukiy was finally launched from the floating dock in Severodvinsk where the final outfitting took place. The submarine's reactor was first activated on 21 November 2008, and the submarine began its sea trials on 19 June 2009.
In July 2010 Yuriy Dolgorukiy passed the first of several company sea trials, in which navigation systems, buoyancy control system, and some other characteristics were tested at sea. All company tests were completed by the end of September 2010 and she was then preparing for state trials.
It was initially planned to conduct the first torpedo launches during the ongoing state trials in December 2010 and then in same month conduct the first launch of the main weapon system, the R-30 (RSM-56) Bulava missile. The plan was then postponed to mid-summer 2011 due to ice conditions in White Sea.
The submarine was expected to be commissioned to Russian Pacific Fleet in the first half of 2011, but in December 2010 it was announced that Yury Dolgorukiy had technical defects and would be laid up for repairs. The work would take at least six months, and after this the submarine would continue the Bulava missile tests and could be ready for active duty by the later half of 2011.
On 12 January 2012 it was reported the submarine had successfully finished state trials and that Yury Dolgorukiy would be ready for commissioning within the next couple of months. It was later reported that both Yuri Dolgorukiy and Alexander Nevsky would enter service in the summer of 2012. Dmitry Rogozin later confirmed that the submarine will be transferred to the Russian navy on 29 July 2012. Yury Dolgorukiy was expected to join the Russian Navy by the end of the year, but tests carried out during the latest sea trials revealed a number of technical flaws. Software glitches in the automated launch control system prevented further tests of the Bulava ballistic missile, the submarine’s main weapon. “We are expecting the Yury Dolgorukiy submarine to enter service in 2013,” defense minister Serdyukov told Russian lawmakers at a meeting on defense issues.
The second Borei-class submarine, Alexander Nevsky, could join Russia’s Pacific Fleet in 2014, the minister said. Sevmash shipyard claimed RUR 30 mln from Russian defense ministry for non-accepting Yury Dolgorukiy because it has to maintain the submarine, since defense minister Anatoly Serdiukov decided to postpone commissioning of the sub and, therefore, deferral of all maintenance expenditures. According to the source, non-accepting of the submarine is related to the non-availability of mooring quays, primarily at Kamchatka where the first two Borei-class subs, Yury Dolgorukiy and Alexander Nevsky will be stationed.
Finally Yury Dolgorukiy joined the Russian Navy on 10 January 2013. The official ceremony of raising the Russian Navy colors on the submarine was led by Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu. The Defense Minister, speaking via video-link, informed the President (Vladimir Putin) that St. Andrew's ensign had been raised on the submarine, symbolically marking its introduction into the Russian Navy. Commenting on the news on Twitter, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, posted: “Tremble, bourgeoisie! You’re done with!”. In 2014 after a series of exercises, the submarine is fully operational in Northern Fleet. The submarine completed its first (deterrent) patrol in 2015.
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