:: KRESTA II CLASS (1968-1976) ::

Kresta II class missile cruiser (1968-1976) High resolution picture

The Soviet missile cruisers of the Kresta II class were launched between 1968 and 1976. These ships were an antisubmarine derivative of the Kresta I class, introducing the new antisubmarine missile SS-N-14, the new surface-to-air missile SA-N-3 and an advanced sonar. The Russian Navy decommissioned all the ships of the class between 1991 and 1993 following the economical crisis that the collapse of the Soviet Union brought.

The first Soviet missile cruisers, the four ships of the Kynda class, had been built in response to the threat posed by the large aircraft carrier force of the United States Navy. For that purpose they were armed with eight SS-N-3 cruise missiles with a range of almost 400 nautical miles and equipped with two tracking radars, allowing to hit two targets simultaneously, but the absence of an onboard helicopter rendered those ships very dependent of other ships or aircraft for the guidance at mid course of the missiles if these were launched beyond the horizon.

The ships of the Kresta I class, as well as those of the derivative classes Kresta II and Kara, were equipped with a very powerful antiaircraft and antisubmarine armament, including an onboard helicopter with hangar, which had the double purpose of carrying antisubmarine missions and helping on the guidance at mid course of the surface-to-surface missiles. On the new cruisers these missiles were installed besides the bridge superstructure to leave space in the deck for the helicopter and its hangar; they were four SS-N-3 in the Kresta I class and eight SS-N-14 in the Kresta II.

In the late 1960s the antisubmarine role gained importance and thus the ships of the Kresta II class were equipped with two quadruple launchers for SS-N-14 antisubmarine/ship long-range missiles. The antiaircraft armament was represented by four 57-millimeter cannons and four 30-millimeters Gatling cannons. There was a sonar device installed in the prow and a powerful antisubmarine armament as in every Soviet/Russian warship. The landing pad and the hangar were raised one deck up in respect of the Kresta I class, to reduce the possibilities of damages during harsh weather conditions. Another key difference was the large Top Sail antenna of the three-dimensional radar.

Kresta II class: 10 units - Admiral Isachenkov, Admiral Isakov, Admiral Makarov, Admiral Nakhimov, Admiral Oktyabrsky, Admiral Yumashev, Kronstadt, Marshal Timoshenko, Marshal Voroshilov (later Khabarovsk), Vasily Chapaev

Type: Missile cruiser

Length: 158.5 meters

Beam: 16.8 meters

Draught: 6 meters

Displacement (standard): 6090 tonnes

Propulsion: 2 x shaft, 2 x steam turbine TV-12, 4 x watertube boiler, 100000 horsepower

Speed: 33 knots (61.1 kilometers/hour)

Range: 4200 nautical miles (7778 kilometers) at 18 knots

Complement: 400

Armament: 2 x quadruple SS-N-14 antisubmarine/ship missile launcher, 2 x twin SA-N-3 surface-to-air missile launcher, 2 x twin 57-millimeter dual-purpose cannon, 4 x AK-630 close-in weapon system 30-millimeter cannon, 2 x MBU-4500A antisubmarine mortar, 2 x MBU-2500A antisubmarine mortar, 2 x pentuple 533-millimeter torpedo launcher, 1 x Ka-25/27 antisubmarine helicopter

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