The keel-laying ceremony for Project 20180TV, seagoing armament support ship Akademik Kovalev, took place at JSC Zvezdochka Ship Repair Center on Dec 19. The ship was named after Sergei N. Kovalev, famous designer of nuclear-powered submarines.
The ceremony was attended by Russian Navy Deputy Commander Admiral A.A. Tatarinov, Director General of JSC Zvezdochka V.S. Nikitin, Director General/Chief Designer of JSC Almaz Central Design Bureau A.V. Shlyakhtenko, Deputy Director General of JSC Sevmash shipyard M.A. Budnichenko, Mayor of Severodvinsk M.A. Gmyrin, son of S.N. Kovalev – Alexei Kovalev, and chairman of the committee for defense industry and conversion affairs at Arkhangelsk City Council N.Y. Kalistratov.
The new ice-class ship is designed for loading, transportation by sea, and supply of warships and submarines with missile weapons and various munitions.
On joint request addressed by staffs of Rubin design bureau, Zvezdochka and Sevmash shipyards, Russian Navy Commander-in-Chief Admiral V.S. Vysotsky signed an order to name the ship in honor of Sergei N. Kovalev, chief designer of Soviet/Russian nuclear-powered strategic submarines, twice Hero of Socialist Labor, academician of the Russian Academy Of Science, laureate of Lenin Prize and state awards of the USSR and Russia. His contribution to national defense capability cannot be exaggerated.
State contract for construction of the seagoing armament support ship was tied with Zvezdochka shipyard on Sept 15, 2011.
Length – 107.6 m
Beam overall – 17.8 m
Full-load displacement – 6,300 tons
Crew – 60 men
The ship is equipped with heliport for Ka-27-class helicopters.
Shipbuilding Tribune Staff, December 21, 2011; Image: rusnavy