Russia' Second Project 11356 Frigate Admiral Essen. Picture: ruspodplav.livejournal.com
"There have been much more classes of the small guided missile ship type than before. All of them carry different weapons control systems, which will entail problems if they have to operate a single force. This is a deadlock option, because the Navy should have same-class ships of every type - from the guided missile corvette to the destroyer," the industrialist said.
In his opinion, advanced ships should have commonized launchers and weapons control systems. This will enable them to fulfil a wide range of missions ranging from antisubmarine warfare to land attack with the use of long-range cruise missiles. Although a commonized versatile shipborne missile launch system has been developed in Russia, the development of numerous designs persists to keep the design bureaux and shipyards busy.
The Buyan-M Corvette "Uglich" launches a 3M-54 Kalibr anti-ship missile during maneuvers in the Caspian Sea.
"We have got several classes of frigates now - Project 11356, Project 22350, upgraded Project 22350. The same goes for corvettes that are aplenty now. The problem stems from the loss of research institutes and military state quality control offices that is being restored urgently. However, this will take time, because seasoned professionals have left the industry," the source added.
Commissioning numerous ships of different classes and types will result in training problems, because a force made up of ships of five to six classes will be unable to rotate the crews. In addition, it will encounter problems with logistics and combat stability, because their engines, components and weapons control systems are not commonized.
The defense industry source also stressed that missile corvettes, even those carrying the Kalibr missile system, would be no match for frigates and destroyers, because the operating capabilities of small-displacement surface ships are limited by their seaworthiness and endurance. The source of TASS stressed that "the emphasis on numerous small ships is an illusion, an error. Such ships will be fit for operations in the Black or Caspian seas, in relatively quiet environment, but the weather conditions in the High North and Far East will prevent them from doing their job." Thus, small missile ships will be unable to defend Russia’s interests within its 200-nm exclusive economic zones in the Arctic and Pacific.
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