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Sea Platforms

Russia unveils scale models of new SSBN, upgraded corvettes, and combat icebreakers

10 January 2020
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A still taken from a news report on Russia’s Channel One television station aired on 24 December 2019 shows the Project 585 submarine (left) and upgraded Project 11442M cruiser (centre). Source: Channel One

Scale models of the next-generation Project 585 (Laika-class) nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) under development for the Russian Navy and several updated surface combatants were unveiled during a recent Ministry of Defence board meeting in Moscow. Footage of the scale models was shown by Russian television broadcaster Channel One on 24 December 2019.

In April 2019 a defence industry source told news agency TASS that the Malachite Design Bureau in St Petersburg had launched research and development (R&D) work for the creation of a fifth-generation SSBN under the codename Laika, following the completion of preliminary design work the previous year.

At the time, the source did not detail the submarine specifications, saying only that "the Tsirkon hypersonic missile will be among the ship's strike weapons" and "the submarine will feature modular structure and a joint integrated combat management system with artificial intelligence".

According to the scale model recently displayed, the Project 585 submarine has a displacement of 11,340 tonnes, a maximum submerged depth of 600 m, can attain a speed of 35 kt, and has an endurance of 90 days.

The armament suite will incorporate Kalibr cruise missiles (including the land-attack 3M-14 variant), 3M-22 Tsirkon (or Zircon) hypersonic anti-ship missiles, P-800 Oniks (3M-55) anti-ship missiles, 91RU Otvet anti-submarine guided missiles, Khishchnik anti-submarine missiles (according to the open sources, a high-speed torpedo is being developed under this programme), Fizik-1 and USET-80 torpedoes, the Lasta anti-torpedo weapon, PMR-2 rocket-propelled mines, MTPK-1 mine-torpedoes, and surface-to-air missiles for the Igla man-portable air defence system.

Several scale models of surface combatants, including the upgraded Project 11442M (Kirov-class) cruiser, the Project 23550 ice-class patrol ship with the Kalibr missiles, and the updated Project 22800 (Karakurt-class) guided-missile corvette with an increased number of 3S-14 vertical launch systems (VLSs), were also on display.

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