Monday, September 13, 2010

Russia's most powerful warship returns home after tour-of-duty

Russia's Pyotr Veliky nuclear-powered missile cruiser will return on Sunday to its home base in northern Russia after a tour-of-duty that lasted for almost six months, a Navy official said.

The flagship of the Northern Fleet has covered about 28,000 nautical miles since the beginning of the mission on March 30 and accomplished a wide range of tasks in line with a comprehensive program of combat training.

The cruiser sailed through the Atlantic, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Indian Ocean to take part in the Vostok-2010 strategic drills in the Pacific in June-July.

On the way back to its home base in Severomorsk, the Pyotr Veliky held joint PASSEX-type drills with the Indian frigate INS Trishul on August 11 and with the French frigate FNS Latouche-Treville on September 6.

The Kirov class cruiser has a displacement of between 24,000 and 26,000 tons, and a speed of up to 31 knots (almost 57 km/h). The ship is 251 meters in length and has a crew of more than 700 sailors.

The ship's main weapons include 20 SS-N-19 Shipwreck missiles, designed to engage large surface targets, and air defense is provided by 12 SA-NX-20 Gargoyle launchers with 96 missiles and 2 SA-N-4 Gecko with 44 missiles.


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