The NITKA ground aviation training facility in Crimea will receive a new optical landing system used for training carrier aviation pilots by 2025, a source in the military industrial complex told TASS.

“The NITKA facility in Saki will receive a new television landing system, similar to the one installed on the Admiral Kuznetsov carrier, which is currently being repaired, before 2025,” the source said.

TASS has not been able to officially confirm this information as of yet.

In order to be able to carry out sorties from aircraft carriers, pilots must first undergo certification for such sorties. Two NITKA training facilities were meant to be used to train carrier pilots – in Saki and in Yeysk. It is known that the former facility is undergoing or has recently undergone repairs and upgrades, while the commissioning of the latter has been repeatedly postponed – most recently, to 2023.

The NITKA facility in Saki returned to Russia with the rest of Crimea in 2014. It was made with metal so that upgrades could be periodically made, which, according to experts, is its main advantage over the facility in Yeysk, which was constructed using concrete.

The Admiral Kuznetsov heavy carrier cruiser is currently undergoing repairs and upgrades at the 35th Naval Shipyard, a part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation. The repairs are expected to be completed in 2025.