The Buzz

Russia Had Plans to Build a 'Super' Aircraft Carrier (But Ran into a Super Big Problem)

Other Russian media reports indicate that designers are in the early phases of planning a new carrier class that would be slightly larger than the Nimitz class — and capable of holding an air wing of 100 planes.

But economic problems — including a looming recession — and the expense of maintaining and modernizing the rest of the nation’s aging fleet makes it doubtful whether Russia can build such an expensive ship.

Holmes estimates the cost of a new Russian carrier could be as much as $8.5 billion and take up to seven years to complete. But the professor also said the Russian quest for a carrier is serious.

Great nations have carriers, Russia considers itself a great nation, and therefore the ship would be a symbol of national revival and destiny. In other words, a new carrier would be one more reason to forget the bad old days when the Soviet Union disintegrated.

“We think of the Soviet Union as a dreary place, but Russians also remember that it wielded great power,” Holmes continued. “That’s a potent memory.”

For Moscow’s navy, the failure of the Ulyanovsk project is one of the biggest, baddest memories of them all.

This first appeared in WarIsBoring here

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