History EditIn the 1980´s the Soviet Union started development of a new aircraft carrier class for the Soviet Navy, called Project 1143.7 (later Kusnetsov class). A never finished carrier called "Ulyanovsk" was designed to be equipped with new fighter aircraft and AWACS aircraft similar to the American E-2C Hawkeye.
Yakovlev OKB received a contract to developed the Yakovlev Yak-44 aircraft. The high-winged aircraft was powered by two Ivtshenko Progress D-27 turboprop engines with a power of 10,300 kW. It had contra-rotating (eight-bladed on the front, six-bladed behind) propellers. Above the aircraft´s fuselage was a large rotodyme.
At least one mock-up of the Yak-44 was build. The project was cancelled in 1991, after financial problems because of the Soviet Union´s collapse. The Kamov Ka-31 AEW helicopter was used as a cheaper compromise solution.