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First Soviet Nuc Sub Not Going to Scrap

First Soviet Nuc Sub Not Going to Scrap 27.09.2012
Text: shiplover.livejournal.com, press service of Nerpa Ship-Repair Plant
Photo: K-3 Leninsky Komsomol. shiplover.livejournal.com, press service of Nerpa Ship-Repair Plant
The first Soviet nuclear-powered submarine K-3 Leninsky Komsomol stays at Nerpa Ship-Repair Plant; no dismantling works are held over the sub. On the contrary, the shipyard's staff applies all efforts to preserve the submarine as a monument, says a letter released today by the shipyard's press service in reply to a story shown on a regional TV channel.

"The information about the first nuclear submarine K-3 Leninsky Komsomol sounded in that story is incorrect. The legendary submarine will not be utilized. Such decision was made by defense ministry last year and addressed to Nerpa Ship-Repair Plant where the firstborn of national nuclear shipbuilding stays since 2005", said the letter.

Throughout seven years workers of the Nerpa shipyard were fighting for the submarine's future. Letters were send to defense ministry, government, parliament, president, and public funds every year with the only request to preserve the submarine which historical value is notably higher than expenses needed for her preservation.

"The first Soviet nuclear submarine does not rust on the Nerpa's slipways, and it is not rust flakes coming off the sub. Strength hull cannot decay, it is another substance. K-3 stands on a shipbuilding slab, and the Nerpa shipyard keeps on fighting for the future of that heroic sub", says the letter.

To preserve K-3 for descendants, the sub must be safely placed afloat until money for the memorial is found. About RUR 50 mln are needed for conversion and preparation for putting afloat. So far, defense ministry has not channeled funds for that. Roughly, it will cost about RUR 500 mln to turn the sub into memorial.

The Nerpa shipyard has been bearing considerable expenses to maintain the submarine for seven years. Lack of space for other hulls hinders implementation of production program. Now this problem is especially acute. Dismantling works on floating workshop Lepse are to begin in one year on the site where K-3 currently stays. This international project is at risk of failure, because conversion of K-3 would take at least half a year even if the money is found in the nearest time.

At one of the recent briefings on the Lepse project implementation, directors of the Nerpa shipyard addressed to state-led corporation Rosatom and other interested agencies with request to assist in settling of that problem.

Now that is the main issue, and staff of the Nerpa shipyard will keep on fighting for preservation of the submarine as a historical monument.

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