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A new stage of the national shipbuilding begins at the time when Russia is challenged with the task of re-building the naval fleet after the country’s defeat in the war with Japan.

In the mid-1900s the experimental data starts to be regularly validated during acceptance and specially arranged sea trials with continuous involvement of the ship model basin personnel.


In January 1908, A.N. Krylov is appointed the Chief Naval Ship Construction Inspector and on February 13, 1908 I.G. Boubnov is following A.N. Krylov’s recommendation approved as the Tank Superintendent.

Иван Григорьевич Бубнов Ivan G. Boubnov


The ship model basin is undergoing extensive upgrading.

I.G. Boubnov supervises the work on construction of a new towing carriage, reinforcing the carriage tracks and installing a unique device for underwater towing tests of Minoga ('Lamprey') and Akula ('Shark') submarine models. At the same time, a laboratory for ship material strength and composition research and marine engine improvement is established. Research to improve ship propellers is performed.

Первая отечественная мореходная ПЛ «Акула» (на заднем плане крейсер «Рюрик»)  The first Russian sea-going submarine Akula (background: cruiser Riurik))

Вторая буксировочная тележка бассейна The second towing carriage of the model basin


Emperor Nicolas II decrees to re-name the '…tank for ship construction experiments attached to the Port of St. Petersburg' into the Ship Model Basin. The same decree approves the provisional table of organisation of the Model Basin.

Император Николай II с женой и сыном на борту «Штандарта» в день подписания указа Emperor Nicolas II with his wife and son on board the Shtandart launch on the day of signing the Decree

Императорская яхта «Штандарт», на которой был подписан вышеупомянутый указ Emperor Nicolas II with his wife and son on board the Shtandart launch on the day of signing the Decree


In 1912, I.G. Boubnov resigns from the Towing Tank and in early 1914 becomes exclusively engaged in managing the construction of new surface ships and submarines.

The Towing Tank starts testing commercial vessel models. The first ones were models of cargo/passenger riverboats built at the Sormovo Yard.

The Towing Tank builds the mechanical laboratory for ship material research. Within a few years’ time the laboratory tests over 2,000 specimens of materials for surface ships and submarines under construction at that time.

The new Superintendent of the Towing Tank becomes V.V. Taklinsky though the official approval of his appointment will come only on September 5, 1916.

Владислав Ян Владиславович Таклинский Vladislav J.V. Taklinsky


The Towing Tank is heavily involved in work on almost all designs of surface combatants and submarines built under the main and additional construction programs of the Russian Imperial Navy. Those projects included Sevastopol- and Imperatritsa Marija ('Empress Maria')-class battleships, Izmail-class battle cruisers, Novik-class destroyers, Bars-class submarines, and hydroplanes for the naval aviation that was just at that time starting its development in Russia.

Линейный корабль «Андрей Первозванный» The Andrey Pervozvanny battleship

Линейный корабль «Севастополь» The Sevastopol-class battleship Gangut

Линейный корабль «Императрица Мария» The Imperatritsa Marija battleship

Подводная лодка типа «Барс» The Imperatritsa Marija battleship

Эсминец типа «Новик» A Novik-class destroyer of the Putilov Works series

Линейный крейсер типа «Измаил» в достроечном ковше Адмиралтейского завода  The Izmail battle cruiser in the Admiralty Yard outfitting basin

Next: 1914–1918