Tbilisi, Project 1143.5, NATO 'Tbilisi' Class, 1990
The first of two Pr.1143.5 aviation cruisers were laid down in January 1983 at South Yard, Nikolayev. Designed to support Soviet ASW groups as an improved Project 1143 Kiev class design with three deck-edge lifts and two steam-catapults. The Tbilisi completed in 1990 and was assigned to the Northern Fleet just as the Communist regime fell in 1990. Her unnamed sister had been laid down in December 1985 with a planned completion date of 1991-92 but due to the fall of the USSR was never completed.
Displacement: 60,000 tons
Dimensions: 300m(long, overall), 73.38m (beam, including flightdeck), 11m draught
Armament: 16x VLS tubes for SS-N-19 'Shipwreck' supersonic anti-ship missiles, 4x SA-N-9 'Gauntlet' SAM launchers, 8x 30mm AK-630 CIWS mounts, 2x RBU-6000 ASW rocket launchers
Airgroup: 12x navalised Su-27B2 'Flanker' fighters, 12x Yak-41 VTOL fighters and 15-18x Ka-27 'Helix' helicopters
Machinery: 250,000shp gas turbines
Real World: This design comes from the 1989-90 Edition of Janes Fighting Ships
. Even by this date much of the details of the Project 1143.5 were still unknown. The drawing by Ian Sturton was a good guess but not completely correct. Janes knew the ships would not be nuclear-powered, but rather bizarrely guessed that they might be gas turbine powered, unlikely for a ship this size (though I think a paired arrangement of the Pr.1164 Atlant powerplant might work). Even the name of the second hull was unknown. The airwing was largely correct, they predicted the Su-27 would be the likely choice for a naval fighter. The armament was sketcky, Janes estimating that 76mm or 100mm gun mounts might be fitted. Its an interesting speculative design which belongs to this thread.
Drawing Notes: dimensions for this design were given but the drawing is clearly labelled "not to scale". It is clear that Ian Sturton has based the hull on the US DoD artist's impressions and actually captures some of the elements of the real ship. The island is simply that of the Project 1143.4 Baku transplanted onto this hull. There was no underwater hull so I have used more or less the earlier Project 1143 style hull. The hangar deck was look rather low, again this is an aretfact of the drawing and I wanted to maintain the spirit of the original drawing.