The Russian Navy is seeking to re-acquire at least “100 nuclear-capable Mi-14 anti-submarine helicopters for deployment within the Black and Northern Sea Fleets over the next two – five years”, according to sources in the Russian Ministry of Defense.
The Mil Mi-14 is a shore-based amphibious helicopter armed with (optionally) a torpedo, twelve 64kg or eight 120kg depth bombs. This submarine killer also has a very special ammo in its arsenal: a 1 kiloton nuclear antisubmarine bomb weighting 1,600kg, capable of scuttling any underwater target within a radius of 800 meters.
The helicopter not only has a unique capability of landing on water, but was an all-weather long-range helicopter capable of operating as far as 300km offshore.
The helicopter could stay airborne for 5.5 hours and cover a total distance of 1,100km.
In the 1990s, White House negotiators insisted on the helicopters decommissioning, along with strategic bombers and ballistic missiles.
The Russian Ministry of Defense is now seeking to re-acquire these weapons in an effort to maintain a last ditch defense capability to counter enemy submarines. Particularly US submarines.
Experts in Moscow believe, the re-commissioning of the Mi-14 helicopters could be accomplished as quickly as twenty four months, depending upon funding, over three stages.
Stage one – implies restoration of 10 decommissioned Mi-14s.
Step two – then they will undergo deep modernization.
Step three – will be essentially the return to production line, which might reportedly take up to five years. Although experts I talk to say its closer to 2-3 years.
See related video: Mil Mi-14 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8OH-RxYw4JU