Cruise Missile Test Launched From Russian Nuclear Submarine
Our Bureau
07:01 AM, July 5, 2017
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Smolensk nuclear-powered submarine
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Russia’s Smolensk nuclear-powered submarine has test-launched a cruise missile that hit the designated target in the Barents Sea from underwater position.

"From the underwater position, a Granit missile was fired against a combined sea-based target at a distance of about 400 kilometers," the Northern Fleet’s press service said on Wednesday.

The launch was carried out as part of a scheduled combat training, Tass Wednesday.

The Smolensk is a Project 949A Antey-class submarine built in 1990. The submarines of this class displace 24,000 tons, have an underwater speed of 32 knots and a crew of 107.

These submarines are armed with 24 launchers of Granit cruise missiles with a range of about 500m km and six torpedo tubes.

The Project 949A Antey, known in NATO as the Oscar II class is a successor to the previous Oscar I class. Out of 19 planned boats 11 were built at Severodvinsk.

Three more boats are incomplete, however it is unlikely that these will ever be commissioned. Active Oscar II class submarines are in service with the Northern and Pacific fleets. Currently these are among the most capable Russian submarines.

The Oscar II class has a lengthened hull by some 10 m, possibly for a quieter propulsion and upgraded electronic systems, and an enlarged fin, which improves underwater maneuverability. These boats are the third largest submarines in terms of displacement and length. Only the Soviet Typhoon class and American Ohio class boats are larger. However these are still the largest attack submarines ever constructed.

These cruise missile boats were designed to attack US aircraft carrier battle groups and coastal installations.

The Project 949A Antey is a double-hulled design, which comprises an inner pressure hull and outer hydrodynamic hull. Separation between both hulls provides significant reserve of buoyancy and improved survivability against torpedoes. The outer hull has a weak magnetic signature, which prevents detection by Magnetic Anomaly Detection (MAD) systems. The reinforced sail is intended to break through the Arctic ice.

Missile tubes are arranged in two rows with the launchers are placed between the inner and outer hulls and inclined at an angle.

Missiles are launched while the submarine is submerged. A warhead of this missile weights 1 000 kg. Under the START treaty nuclear warheads of these missiles have been replaced with high explosive.

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