Russia's only aircraft carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, will undergo upgrading process to accommodate MiG-29K single-seat and MiG-29KUB two-seat fighters, TASS reports Monday.
"MiG-29K/MiG-29KUB, Su-33 planes and some types of helicopters will be based on the warship. Some adjustments will be made precisely to accommodate MiG-29K/MiG-29KUB aircraft. Pilots want something new, something better and more reliable. Actually, the entire aircraft and technical compound of shipborne systems will be modernized," Head of the Nevskoye Design Bureau (the developer of the warship’s modernization project) Sergei Orlov was quoted as saying.
The Admiral Kuznestov-class was Russia's first attempt at a true aircraft carrier, which is also tailored for a defensive role. In addition to its aircraft, the carrier is equipped with 12 P-700 Granit anti-ship cruise missiles housed in silos underneath its forward flight deck - making it the only carrier with this type of weaponry on board.
It's also armed with the Klinok air defence missile system, which carries almost 200 anti-air missiles, and it has 8 Kashstan air defence gun/missile systems that can fire up to 1,000 rounds of 30mm rounds a minute.
The trials of new generation 4++ MiG-29K/MiG-29KUB fighter jets aboard the Admiral Kuznetsov began in the summer of 2016. These planes were part of the warship’s air group during its voyage to Syria in 2016-2017.
In April 2018, a contract was signed for the aircraft carrier’s repairs and upgrade, which is expected to be done by 2021.