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Caliber Cruise Missiles to Set in Russian Subs since 2013

Caliber Cruise Missiles to Set in Russian Subs since 2013 16.11.2012
Text: World Arms Trade Analytic Center
Photo: RusNavy.com
In 2013, Russian defense ministry will start equipping of Project 971 Schuka-B and Project 877 Varshavyanka submarines with Caliber cruise missiles capable to hit land-based targets at the range of 300-2,500 km, reports Izvestiya.

According to the newspaper, "Russian Navy will thereby obtain a capability to attack land targets. By the way, the missiles are launched by common 533-mm torpedo tubes".

"It is practically impossible to intercept Caliber missile even by the most advanced air defense systems, including Russian S-300 and S-400. Salvo launch made by a suddenly surfaced submarine may destroy several key assets at once. This capability makes the subs earlier used only for naval engagement a versatile weapon", a source in Russian Navy Main HQ told Izvestiya.

At present, Russian Navy operates over 20 submarines of Schuka-B and Varshavyanka classes, reports the newspaper.

A high-ranking staff officer told Izvestiya that integration of Caliber missile into Project 971 nuclear submarine K-328 Leopard had been already started. The sub is under repairs at Sevmash shipyard since June 2011. Early in Nov, Caliber missile was successfully tested by its standard carrier, newest Russian Yasen-class submarine Severodvinsk.

According to Izvestiya, at first, the Caliber missiles will be planted in Project 971 submarines stationed at Northern Fleet. Then, analogous work will be done on Pacific Fleet' Schukas.

An informed representative of defense industry told Izvestiya that the first Caliber-equipped diesel-electric submarine would be B-261 Novorossiysk (Project 636.3) being currently built at Admiralteyskie Verfi shipyard in St. Petersburg. She will be followed by diesel subs Rostov-na-Donu and Stary Oskol in 2014-2015. After that, it is planned to plant Caliber missiles on Project 877 Varshavyanka submarines in service at Northern Fleet's 165-th brigade.

"It is also discussed to plant the new missiles on Lada-class submarines, in particular, on the lead sub St. Petersburg which is already built", writes Izvestiya.

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