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Russian cruiser Moskva

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Coordinates: 45°17′42″N 30°52′44″E / 45.2951°N 30.8789°E / 45.2951; 30.8789

Moskva (121)
Russian cruiser Moskva.jpg
Moskva seen from the air in 2012
History
Soviet Union → Russia
NameSlava (in Soviet service), Moskva (from 1995)
NamesakeGlory (1979–1995), Moscow (1995–2022)
Builder61 Kommunara Shipbuilding Plant (SY 445), Nikolayev, Ukrainian SSR
Laid down1976
Launched27 July 1979[1]
Commissioned30 January 1983
DecommissionedSeptember 1990
ReinstatedApril 2000
Identification121
FateSunk by two Ukrainian R-360 Neptune anti-ship missiles on 14 April 2022[2][a]
NotesFlagship of the Black Sea Fleet
General characteristics
Class and type Slava-class cruiser
Displacement
  • 9,380 tons standard
  • 11,490 tons full load[3]
Length186.4 m (611 ft 7 in)[3]
Beam20.8 m (68 ft 3 in)[3]
Draught8.4 m (27 ft 7 in)[3]
Propulsion4 COGOG gas turbines, 2 shafts 121,000 shp (90,000 kW)
Speed32 knots (59 km/h; 37 mph)[3]
Range10,000 nmi (19,000 km; 12,000 mi) at 16 knots (30 km/h; 18 mph)
Complement419 enlisted men and 66 officers[4]
Sensors and
processing systems
  • Voskhod MR-800 (Top Pair) 3D search radar
  • Fregat MR-710 (Top Steer) 3D search radar
  • Palm Frond navigation radar
  • Pop group SA-N-4 fire control radar
  • Top Dome SA-N-6 fire control radar
  • Bass Tilt AK-360 CIWS System fire control radar
  • Bull horn MF hull mounted sonar
Electronic warfare
& decoys
  • Rum Tub and Side Globe EW antennas
  • 2 × PK-2 DL (140mm chaff / flare)
Armament
ArmourSplinter plating
Aircraft carried1 Ka-25 or Ka-27 helicopter

Moskva (Russian: Москва, lit.'Moscow', [mɐskˈva]), formerly Slava (Слава, 'Glory'), was a guided missile cruiser of the Russian Navy. The ship was the lead ship of the Project 1164 Atlant class, named after the city of Moscow. The flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, with a crew of 510, Moskva was considered the most powerful warship in the Black Sea region.[5]

The cruiser was deployed in military conflicts in Georgia (2008), Crimea (2014), and Syria (2015).[6][7] Beginning in February 2022, she led the naval assault during the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, until her sinking on 14 April 2022.[8][9]

History

Slava c. 1983

As Slava

Slava was laid down in 1976 in Shipyard 445 of the 61 Kommunara Shipbuilding Plant in Mykolaiv, Ukrainian SSR, launched in 1979, and commissioned into the Soviet Navy on 30 January 1983. Between 18 and 22 November 1986, the ship visited the Greek port of Piraeus.

Slava played a role in the Malta Summit (2–3 December 1989) between Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and US President George H. W. Bush.[10] She was used by the Soviet delegation, while the US delegation had their sleeping quarters aboard USS Belknap.[11][12][13] The ships were anchored in a roadstead off the coast of Marsaxlokk. Stormy weather and choppy seas resulted in some meetings being cancelled or rescheduled, and gave rise to the moniker the "Seasick Summit" among international media. In the end, the meetings took place aboard Maxim Gorkiy, a Soviet cruise ship anchored in Marsaxlokk Bay.[14]

Slava returned to Mykolaiv in December 1990 for a refit that lasted until late 1998.[15] On 15 May 1995, the ship was formally renamed Moskva.[16]

As Moskva

Moskva in 2009
Moskva in 2012

Recommissioned into the Russian Navy in April 2000, Moskva replaced the Kynda-class cruiser Admiral Golovko as the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet.[17]

In early April 2003, Moskva, along with the frigate Pytlivyy, Smetlivy, and a landing ship departed Sevastopol for exercises in the Indian Ocean with a Pacific Fleet task group (Marshal Shaposhnikov and Admiral Panteleyev) and the Indian Navy.[18] The force was supported by the Project 1559V tanker Ivan Bubnov and the Project 712 ocean-going tug Shakhter.

Moskva visited Malta's Grand Harbour in October 2004, and the Ensemble of the Black Sea Fleet performed at a concert at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta for the occasion.[19] In 2008 and 2009, she visited the Mediterranean and participated in naval drills with the ships of the Northern Fleet.[20]

In August 2008, in support of the Russian invasion of Georgia, Moskva was deployed to secure the Black Sea.[21][22] During a brief surface engagement, the Georgian Navy scored one missile hit on Moskva before being overwhelmed.[23] After Russia's recognition of Abkhazia's independence, the ship was stationed at the Abkhazian capital, Sukhumi.[24]

On 3 December 2009, Moskva was laid up for a month at floating dock PD-30 in Sevastopol for a scheduled interim overhaul which comprised replacement of cooling and other machinery, reclamation work at the bottom and outboard fittings, propulsion shafts and screws, clearing and painting of bottom and above-water parts of the ship's hull.

In April 2010 it was reported that Moskva would join other navy units in the Indian Ocean to conduct exercises.[25] In August 2013 the cruiser visited Havana, Cuba.[26]

In late August 2013, Moskva was deployed to the Mediterranean Sea in response to the build-up of US warships along the coast of Syria.[27] During the Russian invasion of Crimea in 2014, Moskva blockaded the Ukrainian fleet in Donuzlav Lake.[28]

On 17 September 2014, Moskva was deployed to the Mediterranean Sea, taking shift from guard ship Pytlivy.[20]

In July 2015, Moskva visited Luanda, to strengthen military cooperation with Angola.[29] From the end of September 2015, while in the eastern Mediterranean, the cruiser was charged with the air defences for the Russian aviation group based near the Syrian town of Latakia that conducted the air campaign in Syria.[30] On 25 November 2015, after the 2015 Russian Sukhoi Su-24 shootdown, it was reported that Moskva, armed with the S-300F surface-to-air missile system,[31] would be deployed near the coastal Syria-Turkey border.[32] In 2016, she was replaced by sister ship Varyag in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.[33] On 22 July 2016 Moskva was awarded the Order of Nakhimov.[34]

Upon return from her deployment in January 2016, Moskva was to undergo a refit and upgrade but due to lack of funds her future remained uncertain as of July 2018.[35][36]

In June 2019, Moskva left the port of Sevastopol in the Black Sea to test her combat systems and main propulsion.[37]

In February 2020, Russian Orthodox officials said that a very "rare and important" Christian relic purported to be a part of the True Cross on which Jesus was crucified was to be placed aboard the ship.[38][39]

On 3 July 2020, Moskva completed two and a half months of repairs and maintenance intended to allow her to remain in service until 2040.[40][41] The first post-repair deployment was scheduled for August 2020; however, in reality, she only began to prepare for the deployment in February 2021.[42][43] She was at sea on exercises in March 2021.[44]

2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine

Moskva, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, helped lead the naval assault during the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.[8][9] She was the most powerful surface vessel in the Black Sea region at the time.[5]

In February 2022, the cruiser left Sevastopol to participate in the attack on Ukraine.[45] The ship was later used against the Ukrainian armed forces during the attack on Snake Island, together with the Russian patrol boat Vasily Bykov.[46] Moskva hailed the island's garrison over the radio and demanded its surrender, and was told "Russian warship, go fuck yourself". After this, all contact was lost with Snake Island, and the thirteen-member Ukrainian garrison was captured.[47] Slava-class cruisers are built for both air and sea superiority, and have no land-attack missiles. Moskva mainly stayed behind other Russian warships, providing air cover for military demonstrations of amphibious landings with Odesa as the apparent target.[48]

Sinking

External image
image icon Moskva on fire and listing to port the morning after the attack, 14 April 2022.

Ukrainian presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych and Odesa governor Maksym Marchenko said their forces hit Moskva in the late hours of 13 April 2022, with two R-360 Neptune anti-ship missiles, and she was on fire around 7 p.m. local time (GMT+3).[49][50][51]

On 14 April 2022, the Ukrainian Southern Command said that Moskva had capsized and was beginning to sink.[52] The Russian Ministry of Defence said a fire caused a munitions explosion.[53] The same day, the Russian Navy attempted to tow the damaged ship toward Sevastopol, but she sank in the Black Sea, 100 kilometres (62 mi) from the coast of Odessa.[54] Moskva is the largest Russian warship to be sunk in combat since World War II, and the first of a similar size since ARA General Belgrano during the Falklands War in 1982.[55][56]

According to the Lithuanian defense minister, there were 485 crew members aboard, including 66 officers. He also said that a Turkish ship responded to a distress call and saved 54 crew members at 2 a.m. local time.[4] Russia stated one sailor from the Moskva was killed and 27 were missing, while 396 crewmembers were rescued.[57]

The wreck of the ship has been officially declared an underwater cultural heritage site of Ukraine.[58]

Notes

  1. ^ Not acknowledged by Russia.

References

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External links