Moskva-class helicopter carrier

The Moskva class helicopter carriers were the first operational Soviet Navy aircraft carriers. The Soviet designation was Project 1123 Kondor.

These ships were laid down at Nikolayev South (Shipyard No.444). The lead vessel was launched in 1965 and named Moskva; she entered commission two years later. Moskva was followed by Leningrad, which was commissioned in late 1968; there were no further vessels built, reportedly due to the poor handling of the ships in rough seas. Both were conventionally powered.

The Moskvas were not true "aircraft carriers" in that they did not carry any fixed-wing aircraft; the air wing was composed entirely of helicopters. They were designed primarily as anti-submarine warfare (ASW) vessels, and her weapons and sensor suite was optimized against the nuclear submarine threat. Their strategic role was to defend the Soviet ballistic missile submarine bastions against incursions by Western attack submarines, forming the flagships of an ASW task force.


Moskva-class helicopter carrier
Class Ship
Type Aircraft Carrier
Manufacturer Black Sea Shipyard
Production Period 1962 - 1968
Origin Russia (USSR)
Country Name Origin Year
Russia (USSR) 1967
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Russia (USSR) 1967 1991 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Black Sea Shipyard 1962 1968 2 View

The operational requirement was issued by Admiral Sergey Gorshkov in 1959. The aim of the ships was to counter NATO Polaris submarines and act as a flagship for anti-submarine warfare. Initially it was hoped to operate 10 helicopters from an 8000 ton ship. The design evolved into a larger vessel capable of operating up to 14 helicopters with self defence armament.

Ships in Class

Name Namesake Builder Laid down Launched Commissioned Fate
Moskva City of Moscow Soviet Shipyard No. 444,Mykolaiv 15 December 1962 14 January 1965 25 December 1967 Broken up at Alang, 1997
Leningrad City of Leningrad 15 January 1965 31 July 1968 2 June 1969 Broken up, Greece, 1995

Name: Moskva
Operators: Soviet Navy
Russian Navy
Succeeded by: Kiev aircraft carriers
In service: 1967-1991
Planned: 3
Completed: 2
Cancelled: 1
Retired: 2
General characteristics
Type: helicopter carrier
Displacement: 14,950 tons standard
17,500 tons full load
Length: 189 m (620 ft)
Beam: 23 m (75 ft)
Draught: 13 m (43 ft)
Propulsion: 2 shaft steam turbines, 4 pressure fire boilers, 100,000 hp
Speed: 31 knots (57 km/h)
Range: 14,000 nm at 12 knots (22 km/h)
Complement: 850
Armament: 2× twin SA-N-3 'Goblet' SAM launchers
2 × twin 57 mm guns
1 × SUW-N-1 launcher for FRAS-1 anti submarine missiles
2 × RBU-6000 ASW rockets
10× 553 mm torpedo tubes (2 × 5)
Aircraft carried: 18× Kamov Ka-25 'Hormone' or Mi-8helicopters
Notes: Ships in class include: Moskva,Leningrad

End notes