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Russian Navy New Project 22160 Patrol Ships to Be Used For Wide Range of Missions
 
The third Project 22160 patrol ship, the Pavel Derzhavin, was laid down at the Gorky Shipyard in the town of Zelenodolsk in the middle of last week. The completion of the first and second ships - the Vassily Bykov and Dmitry Rogachov - has been under way since 2014. In all, six ships of the class were ordered from the shipyard for the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet.
The third Project 22160 patrol ship, the Pavel Derzhavin, was laid down at the Gorky Shipyard in the town of Zelenodolsk in the middle of last week. The completion of the first and second ships - the Vassily Bykov and Dmitry Rogachov - has been under way since 2014. In all, six ships of the class were ordered from the shipyard for the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet.
 
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Naval Forces News - Russia
 
 
 
Russian Navy New Project 22160 Patrol Ships to Be Used For Wide Range of Missions
 
The third Project 22160 patrol ship, the Pavel Derzhavin, was laid down at the Gorky Shipyard in the town of Zelenodolsk in the middle of last week. The completion of the first and second ships - the Vassily Bykov and Dmitry Rogachov - has been under way since 2014. In all, six ships of the class were ordered from the shipyard for the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet.

Much has changed in the future of the project over two years since the laying of the lead ship, the Vassily Bykov. Several days ago, the shipyard said:

"The Project 22160 ship is designed for guarding the territorial waters, patrolling the exclusive economic zone on open and enclosed seas, stemming smuggling and piracy, searching and rescuing ships in distress, monitoring the environment, escorting ships and vessels and guarding naval bases and sea areas to raise alarm in case of an attack of enemy assets in wartime."
     
The third Project 22160 patrol ship, the Pavel Derzhavin, was laid down at the Gorky Shipyard in the town of Zelenodolsk in the middle of last week. The completion of the first and second ships - the Vassily Bykov and Dmitry Rogachov - has been under way since 2014. In all, six ships of the class were ordered from the shipyard for the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet.
Project 22160 patrol ship. Picture: Severnoye Design Bureau
     
However, patrolling, stemming, etc. are not the job of the Navy. The maritime units of Russia’s Federal Border Guard Service are designed for these missions. When the Vassily Bykov was being laid down in Zelenodolsk, a Russian Navy Main Staff spokesman commented on the event as follows: "The new patrol ships will be built for fighting terrorists on high seas." They also can be used in the rescue and armed casualty evacuation ship roles.

There is certain logic in counterterrorism using patrol ships. The Pyotr Veliky (NATO reporting name: Kirov-class) nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser was used on the counterpiracy operation near Somali in 2009. Using the ship-based helicopter, her crew interdicted three fast boats of present-day corsairs. However, the flagship of the Northern Fleet is not designed for missions like that.

In order to provide security of Winter Olympics 2014, a 20-ship task force was deployed near Russia’s Black Sea coast. It was led by the Moskva (Slava-class) guided missile cruiser escorted by the Pytlivy (Krivak) patrol ship and Alexandrovets and Muromets (Grisha-class) antisubmarine warfare corvettes. At the time, there was an opinion that the Navy lacked patrol ships to handle such missions.

Overall, the patrol ship class, which is absolutely new to the Russian Navy, initially was conceived as a large border guard ship with a displacement of 1,300 tons, 60-day endurance, versatility and ability to operate far away from the base. The Severnoye Design Bureau derived the Project 22160 ship from the platform that had been offered earlier as ocean-going border guard ship. The ship was supposed to mount a 57-mm automatic gun and two 30-mm six-barrel AK-630M automatic guns.

In July 2015, Capt. 1st Rank Vladimir Tryapichnikov, chief, shipbuilding department, Russian Navy Main Staff, said: "Patrol ships are a true novelty to the Russian Navy today. We have analyzed the situation and realize that the ship like that should not carry missiles, but to show the St. Andrew’s flag all over the ocean. Naturally, the ship was designed for fighting pirates near the Horn of Africa."
     
The third Project 22160 patrol ship, the Pavel Derzhavin, was laid down at the Gorky Shipyard in the town of Zelenodolsk in the middle of last week. The completion of the first and second ships - the Vassily Bykov and Dmitry Rogachov - has been under way since 2014. In all, six ships of the class were ordered from the shipyard for the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet.
Project 22160 patrol ship model at Euronaval 2014 featuring some Kalibr-NK cruise missiles
     
However, the designers said that the Project 22160 was based on the modular armament principle, i.e. its armament can be strengthened considerably. Some of the sea-based cruise missiles launched on terrorists in Syria from the Caspian Sea on November 7, 2015 were fired off by Project 21631 (Buyan-M-class) guided missile corvettes displacing 900 tons, i.e. 50% less than a Project 22160 patrol ship. After the operation, a decision was made to equip the patrol ships in construction with Kalibr missile systems.

News was announced by Gorky Shipyard First Deputy Director General Alexander Karpov in October 2015. According to him, "the successful salvoes against Islamic State targets have proven the firepower of the missiles of the type. They also require little room. The [Kalibr] system will be installed on other ships as well, particularly, project 22160 ones."

Several days later, the Interpolitex 2015 show took place. A Project 22160 patrol ship model was displayed at the show, sporting Kalibr-NK cruise missiles in two standard 40-foot containers at the stern. Each container houses four missiles.

However, the introduction of the Kalibr-NK missile system has radically altered the purpose of the ship. Now, it is a full-fledged warship in an utterly class and with an absolutely different purpose. Therefore, it would be logical to expect the Project 22160 ship to be reclassified as corvette soon.

However, corvettes of two classes - Project 20380 and Project 20385 - have already been in construction to carry Kalibr-NK missile systems. Guided missile ships in construction are represented by two classes too - Project 21631 and Project 22800 (Karakurt class). Notably, each of the above ships is supposed to carry eight Kalibr vertical launch tubes.

At the same time, the construction of a series of patrol ships for the Russian Navy remains advisable. According to expert opinion, the Russian Navy needs ships in this class indeed and has real missions for them to handle.

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