Though much smaller than the Buyan-M missile boats which have performed so well in Syria, the Karakurt missile ships, dubbed Uragan (Hurricane), will boast convincing firepower and will be able to operate way away from shore.
Unlike its predecessor, the 500-ton Scorpion gunboat, the Project 22800 Karakurt corvette displaces 800 tons of water and carries an impressive arsenal of state-of-the-art artillery and missile systems, including a multipurpose launcher capable of firing Kalibr cruise missiles up to 2,500 kilometers (over 1,500 miles) and Onyx supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles.
The AK-176 automatic cannon in the ship’s forward section is digitally operated and is capable of firing up to 125 72 mm shells a minute 16 kilometers away.
The Karakut will also carry the Pantsir-M, a naval version of the Pantsir-S1 combined surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery system, and the all-new Germes-K missiles with a UAV-based homing system.
The corvette can simultaneously engage four targets with as many missiles.
“The Karkurts cost much less to build than destroyers and cruisers, but their firepower capability is almost as impressive as theirs,” military expert Dmitry Boltenkov told Izvestia.
“They also take just one year to build, which means that within the next few years Russia will have a powerful group of missile-carrying ships capable of operating both in littoral zones and way away from shore,” he added.
Its operating range is around 2,500 nautical miles and sea endurance is 15 days.
The corvette also has improved seaworthy characteristics.
Seven Karakurt-class missile corvettes are currently under construction, and the Navy plans to have at least 20 such ships in the coming years.
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