What kind of nuclear submarine “Irkutsk” will return to the Pacific Fleet in 2023?

Modernized nuclear submarine with increased combat power “Irkutsk” project 949AM “Antey” will return to the combat strength of the Pacific Fleet at the end of 2023. Currently, the submarine is on factory sea trials. The combat capabilities of this nuclear submarine will grow — it will carry 48 Onyx missiles and “Caliber-PL”. Before the transfer of the Navy “Irkutsk” will launch these missiles. 

How will they modernize?

“Irkutsk” during the modernization will become not just a submarine of project 949AM. Instead of anti-ship missiles “Granit” the ship will be able to carry 48 fundamentally new Caliber-PL, Onyx missiles. That is, the submarine will be able to strike at coastal targets that were previously inaccessible to it. The presence of a specific range of missiles on board the submarine will depend on the tasks assigned to it.

Repair and modernization of “Irkutsk” at the Far East plant “Zvezda” (part of the Far East Shipbuilding and Ship Repair Center) was launched in July 2019. In November of the same year, Deputy Minister of Defense of Russia Aleksey Krivoruchkoannounced his intention to equip nuclear submarines with the latest Zircon hypersonic missiles.

The technical project for the modernization of the hull was carried out by the engineers of the Rubin Central Design Bureau MT. By the autumn of 2020, it became known that troubleshooting and repair of Irkutsk's ship fittings, general ship devices, and steering gears were being carried out. The timing of the return of the submarine to the fleet was shifted. It was planned to hand over the nuclear submarine in 2022, but later the media reported on the possible postponement of the return of the submarine to service in 2023.

New weapons

The double-hull design and large dimensions of the Irkutsk allow it to carry a wide range of strike weapons with a large ammunition capacity. Onyx missiles are three times smaller than Granite, but have the same destructive potential and intellectual payload. This made it possible to increase the number of missiles on board the ship. “Caliber-PL”, makes it possible to strike at coastal targets. 


The main task of “Irkutsk” is the fight against enemy aircraft carrier strike groups. The submarine has a significant diving depth and low noise, while it has a high underwater speed and good maneuverability. By the way, because of the size and shape of the submarine of this project was called “loaves”.

Long story

K-132 “Irkutsk” — nuclear submarine with cruise missiles of project 949A “Antey”. It was laid down at Sevmash May 8, 1985, launched at the end of 1987. The submarine became part of the Northern Fleet on October 31, 1989 under the name K-132, on October 29, 1990 it was transferred to the Pacific Fleet. In the spring of 1993, it was renamed to Irkutsk. 

In 2008, repairs were started, and at first it was planned to carry out a medium repair, then the customer corrected the terms of reference for "restoration of technical readiness" with a corresponding reduction in funding. The submarine was waiting for repair and modernization at the Zvezda plant. since 2013. 


The displacement of the submarine reaches 24 thousand tons, the length of the hull — 154 meters, width — over 18 meters. The submarine develops underwater speed up to 32 knots, dives to a depth of 600 meters. The main purpose of “Anteev” — destruction of enemy carrier formations. The basic armament was P-700 “Granit” cruise missiles. and six torpedo tubes.



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