MOSCOW, July 10 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's newest Borey class strategic nuclear submarine, the Yury Dolgoruky, has completed the first round of sea trials and is returning to a shipyard in northern Russia, the Sevmash plant said on Friday.
Sea trials of the submarine, which is expected to be armed with new Bulava sea-based ballistic missiles, started on June 24 in the White Sea.
"A team of workers and submariners has successfully completed the set tasks," Sevmash general director Nikolai Kalistratov said.
He added that the Yury Dolgoruky would still have to pass a number of sea trials later this year to test equipment and performance levels.
The vessel is 170 meters (580 feet) long, has a hull diameter of 13 meters (42 feet), a crew of 107, including 55 officers, a maximum depth of 450 meters (about 1,500 feet) and a submerged speed of about 29 knots. It can carry up to 16 ballistic missiles and torpedoes.
The construction cost of the submarine totaled 23 billion rubles (about $713 mln), including 9 billion rubles ($280 mln) for research and development.
Two other Borey class nuclear submarines, the Alexander Nevsky and the Vladimir Monomakh, are currently under construction at the Sevmash plant and are expected to be completed in 2009 and 2011. Russia is planning to build eight of these submarines by 2015.
According to Navy officials, fourth-generation Borey class nuclear-powered submarines will form the core of Russia's fleet of modern strategic submarines, and will be deployed with Russia's Northern and Pacific fleets.