Is Iran Slowly Moving Towards Building an Aircraft Carrier?

Is Iran Slowly Moving Towards Building an Aircraft Carrier
   Is Iran Slowly Moving Towards Building an Aircraft Carrier?



Warships capable of carrying aircraft are used by navies around the world, but to date, the Iranian Navy isn’t one of those countries that operate a carrier.


The closest that the Islamic Republic of Iran has come to building an aircraft carrier is to “simulate” an American carrier as a weapons test platform.


The “Elite” Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy (IRGC-N) had transformed an old target barge into a large-scale mock-up of that loosely resembled the U.S. Navy’s Nimitz-class aircraft carriers.


It was used in the February 2015 “Great Prophet IX” exercises and again this past summer in similar exercises.


Embarrassingly for the IRGC-N, the faux carrier proved difficult to sink – that is until it floundered in waters in the channels near the Iranian naval base at Bandar Abbas.


Now, Tehran could be inching closer to developing a true carrier.


The Associated Press reported this month that the IRGC-N reportedly launched a heavy warship that was capable of carrying helicopters, drones, and missile launchers.


From the photographs that have been released online, it appears to be a large cargo vessel rather than a true warship.


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Also Read: Iran acquired new warship able of carrying helicopters, UAVs and patrol boats

The vessel, which was named after the “martyred” Guard Naval Commander Abdollah Roudaki, was photographed carrying truck-launched surface-to-surface missiles and anti-aircraft missiles. It lacks anything resembling a flight deck and instead has a flat section mid-hull that has been designated as a landing pad for a helicopter. It looks less like a carrier than the First World War era warships that were converted into carriers.According to IRGC-N claims, the Abdollah Roudaki is 150 meters or about 492 feet in length, and displaces some 400 tons – significantly smaller than the 332 meters (1,092 feet) length of an actual Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, and still roughly half the length of the America-class amphibious assault ships.
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