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In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the USSR was faced with the need for a new, medium-sized antisubmarine ship to replace the aging Kresta-II class cruisers and some of the much older Kotlin and Kildin class destroyers. The Krivak class frigate was already around, but something larger and more capable was needed. The answer was the Udaloy class destroyer. Designed to be cheaper and easier to service than the cramped, overengineered Krestas but more capable than the low-mix Krivaks, the Udaloy was the other half of the building program that also produced the Sovremenny class destroyer.

Every element of the ship focused on anti-submarine warfare, with other roles being relegated to secondary positions. The ship itself is rather large, the better to deaden unnecessary vibrations and equipment noise, being about five hundred feet in length and around 7500 tons displacement. Quiet, responsive gas turbine engines provided main propulsion and electric power. Her main battery is two quad box launchers for SS-N-14 Silex ASW missiles, backed up by two quad 533mm torpedo tubes, RBU-6000 and RBU-1000 ASW rocket launchers. Her air defense suite is for self-defense only, consisting of eight eight-round VLS for SA-N-9 Gauntlet missiles, two AK-100 100mm automatic cannons mounted in two single turrets forward, and four AK-630 30mm CIWS. She also carries two Ka-27 Helix ASW helicopters.

Until recently, the Udaloys were the best maintained and most extensively operated large units of the Russian Navy, though of late the Sovremennys, Kirovs and Slavas have returned to some significant prominence. The primary reason for this is that anti-submarine warfare was, and still primarily is, the most important warfare area for keeping the sea lanes open into Russia, combined with the fact that the Udaloys were cheaper to operate than the other, larger warships.

Udaloy II

In the late 1980s, an experimental new design was built, based on an Udaloy hull. This warship, known in the west as an Udaloy II, is an attempt to combine most of the capabilities of the Udaloy and the Sovremenny into one hull, for less than the cost of a large and complex Slava cruiser.

The new ship removes the SS-N-14 launchers in favor of two quad launchers for SS-N-22 Sunburn missiles. The ASW capability is provided by SS-N-15 Starfish missiles launched from the torpedo tubes, as in the Kirov and Neustrashimy, and the two 100mm guns are replaced with one twin-mounted AK-130 130mm, the same weapon found on the Kirov, Slava and Sovremenny classes. The SA-N-9 system is retained, but AK-630 has been replaced by two CADS-N-1 Kashtan mountings. Further, her RBU-6000 mounts have been replaced with the newer, more capable RBU-12000. The sensor, ECM and countermeasure fit appears to be identical to the older Udaloy class.

Though NATO analysts rated the Udaloy II very highly, Russia hasn't seemed eager to repeat the experiment. Apparently, the new design either is too expensive, or not sufficiently capable. This makes a certain amount of sense, since it has considerably less air defense capability than the Sovremenny, and quite a few Sovremenny and classic Udaloy class ships remain in active service.

General Characteristics, Udaloy class ASW destroyer (Project 1155 Fregat)

  • Hull designator: DD - Antisubmarine destroyer (US/NATO). BPK - Large antisubmarine ship (болшой противолодочный корабль. Russia/USSR)
  • Number: 8 active, 1 laid up, 4 retired.
  • Displacement: 7500 tons
  • Length: 163 m (534.7 ft)
  • Beam: 19.3 m (63.32 ft)
  • Draft: 6.2 m (20.3 ft)
  • Propulsion: 4 gas turbines, COGAG configuration, 2 shafts, 120000 shp
  • Speed: 36 knots
  • Range: 10500 nmi at 14 knots
  • ASW missiles: 8x (2 quad, 8 rounds) SS-N-14 Silex.
  • Anti-air missiles: 8x octuple VLS (64 rounds) SA-N-9 Gauntlet.
  • Torpedoes: 8x (2 quad) 533mm torpedo tubes. Type 53 nuclear or conventional torpedoes, ASW or ASuW.
  • ASW rocket launchers: 2x RBU-6000, 2x RBU-1000.
  • Guns: 2x single AK-100 100mm automatic, 4x AK-630 30mm gatling.
  • Aircraft: 2x Ka-27 Helix.
  • Crew: 300

General Characteristics, Udaloy II class multipurpose destroyer (Project 1155.1 Fregat B)

  • Hull designator: DD - Antisubmarine destroyer (US/NATO). BPK - Large antisubmarine ship (болшой противолодочный корабль. Russia/USSR)
  • Number: 1 in service.
  • Displacement: 8200 tons
  • Length: 163 m (534.7 ft)
  • Beam: 19.3 m (63.32 ft)
  • Draft: 6.2 m (20.3 ft)
  • Propulsion: 4 gas turbines, COGAG configuration, 2 shafts, 120000 shp
  • Speed: 36 knots
  • Range: 10500 nmi at 14 knots
  • Anti-ship missiles: 8x (2 quad, 8 rounds) SS-N-22 Sunburn.
  • ASW missiles: SS-N-15 Starfish launched from torpedo tubes.
  • Anti-air missiles: 8x octuple VLS (64 rounds) SA-N-9 Gauntlet, 2x (16 ready, 48 reserve) SA-N-11 Grisom as part of CADS-N-1.
  • Torpedoes: 10x (2 quin) 533mm torpedo tubes. Type 53 nuclear or conventional torpedoes, ASW or ASuW.
  • ASW rocket launchers: 2x RBU-12000, 2x RBU-1000.
  • Guns: 1x twin AK-130 130mm automatic, 4x GSh-6-30 (2 twin) as part of CADS-N-1.
  • Aircraft: 2x Ka-27 Helix.
  • Crew: ~320

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