Before the start of the International Maritime Defense Show in St. Petersburg, specialists and leaders of various levels from the United Engine Corporation followed several statements and speeches at once on the topic of how the UEC is doing with engines for the Russian Navy.
And things, based on what has been said, are getting better. And this cannot but rejoice, because our fleet is our pain, we root for it and worry about it. And how not to worry when the painting is just oil: the Germans put us in sanctions, so instead of German diesels, we put Chinese ones on our missile ships. Such a reason for pride that your teeth grind, especially when you read that you had to cut the ship lengthwise to extract this Chinese diesel, which turned out to be unusable.
Yes, everything was very sad with the engines. Especially with large ones, for ships from the frigate and above. Well, and not at all better from the corvette and below, to be honest.
And once, however, thirty years ago and in a completely different country, we fully provided the fleet with the entire line of engines, from a raid boat to a heavy aircraft-carrying cruiser.
But these times, alas, remained in history, so let's see what we can rejoice in today.
Today, according to the UEC, one can rejoice that the experimental design development on marine gas turbine diesel engines, which began at the beginning of the 2000s, is finally almost completed.
UEC General Designer Yuri Shmotin told about the steps that were taken by the corporation as part of the program to create domestic marine power units.
In 2006 and 2008, respectively, the development of marine gas turbine engines was presented: M75RU with a capacity of 7,000 hp. and M70FRU with a capacity of 14,000 hp. respectively.
In 2014, the implementation of the second part of the program began. And from 2014 to 2017, three series of development work were successfully completed.
1. The technology of serial production of the 27,500 hp engine has been developed.
2. Developed a reversible gas turbine engine M70FRU-R.
3. On the basis of the M70FRU-2 engine, a GTA was developed for hovercraft.
These R&D projects carried out by PJSC UEC-Saturn, which is based in Rybinsk, have made it possible to replace the engines of the Ukrainian manufacturer Zorya-Mashproekt DO63 and DS71, which we are in demand.
Until now, we have been completely dependent on the Ukrainians for the production of such engines. We can say that since 2018, a light has dawned on us at the end of the tunnel, and if everything goes as expected, it will be possible to forget about the shortage of Ukrainian engines.
UEC Deputy Director General Viktor Polyakov is also very optimistic. Polyakov believes that the created line of engines from 7,000 to 27,500 hp. (although there are only three of them) will be able to cover all the needs of the fleet in the short and medium term.
Polyakov is confident that, in addition to the mass production of engines, UEC is capable of establishing warranty and post-warranty service, service maintenance and repairs of all levels.
UEC, according to the statements of employees of different levels, is ready to provide ALL surface ships of the Navy with gas turbine power plants. This statement, shall we say, looks very loud., - noted in the UEC.
As for the modernization of ships that are already in operation - here it depends exactly on which ships.It is doubtful that this can be organized for the "Moscow" or "Varyag", since the engines for them were not made in Russia.
By the way, about the replaced Ukrainian engines.
The fact that three engines have been replaced is wonderful. Frigates, corvettes, landing ships - it's worth rejoicing. Especially for the frigates, which we really need.
However, to operate in the far ocean zone, ships of a slightly different scale are needed and, accordingly, with different power plants.
And here it is worth remembering the engines that remained there, in Ukraine, at Zorya-Mashproekt. DM33L with 45,000 hp, DA80 with 40,000 hp - we also need such engines. For other ships that are still in the future. Larger than a frigate.
Is it possible to simultaneously build the engines that are needed today and work on the engines that will be needed tomorrow?
I am sure - yes, you can.
We were able to solve the problem with engines for frigates. M55R engines have already been delivered for Admiral Golovko and Admiral Isakov. It is from that line that replaced the Ukrainian engines.
Nice deal, isn't it? But we must go further.
It is assumed that the M90FR will become the basis for the creation of new marine engines.
UEC is considering options for creating a 25 MW / 34,000 hp engine. based on M90FR. Then there is a range of motors ranging from 25 MW (34,000 hp) to 35 MW (47,500 hp).
The UEC says it will be able to supply about 20 M90FR engines. Is it a lot, is it not? This is essentially 10 ships. The corporation understands that this is not so much. Considering the need for scheduled engine replacements and repairs.
UEC specialists confidently believe that imported engines on ships may well be replaced by M90FR during major overhauls. True, given the age of such ships and the cost of replacing the gas turbine engine, no direct decision was made, but a theoretical possibility exists. As today, the UEC is carrying out major overhauls of the same Ukrainian engines.
However, it should be said that at least over 20 years a lot has been done in terms of import substitution, in order to seriously say that everything has been replaced by the efforts of the UEC and the fleet will probably have no shortage of engines. prematurely.
While it is worth noting that there are engines at the "corvette-frigate" level. As a cruise M70FRU, as an afterburner M90FR. At a lower level (small rocket ships, artillery ships, landing ships), you can use engines based on the same M70FRU with a capacity of 10 to 13 thousand hp.
Interestingly, the base engine of the M70FRU family was designed back in 2008, but alas, no one needed it. If anyone does not remember, then this engine was intended for project 20380 corvettes, which they decided to equip with imported diesel engines at the top. German.
Then the sanctions began, and instead of the German ones, the Chinese ones were installed with all the consequences. And there were no orders for M70FRU.
And now, when we really played out, we remembered that we have our own developments. And in a fairly short time, they created two modifications on the basis of the M70FRU, the M70FRU-R with a reversible turbine for surface ships and the M70FRU-2 for air-cushion landing ships.
It is believed that the M70FRU is a completely modern engine at the level of foreign analogues and is in no way inferior to imported ones in terms of new products such as a local automated control system, a vibration diagnostics system and other innovations.
And the basic model M70FRU is generally planned to be produced as the main propulsion system for promising corvettes and frigates.
In addition, within the framework of the agreement, which was concluded by the UEC with the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, a new generation marine engine is in operation. Let it be the fifth, we love to give numbers.
34,000 hp, a low-emission combustion chamber, a bunch of new high-temperature corrosion-resistant alloys - all this (according to the same Shmotin) within the framework of the project promises a whole platform for the creation of engines for various purposes and different powers.
As they say in the UEC, today they use domestic materials created with the help of additive technologies and are not inferior in their characteristics to foreign counterparts. I want to believe. I really want to.
In general, I would like to wish all the UEC employees every success. Considering that this corporation, or rather, its marine department from Rybinsk, did not appear in high-profile scandals, but gradually made engines and turbines, it would be just fine if they continued this activity just as quietly for the benefit of the fleet.
Well, you must admit that these German MAN, licensed and unlicensed Chinese engines are not serious. Only Russian equipment should be on the Russian ships. This is a guarantee of security in the first place and a certain amount of patriotism in the last.
So there is reason for pride. On the "Saturn" really beautifully coped with the task.
But the question remains about large engines and gas turbine engines for large ships from the destroyer and above.