Despite being born for a long time, the Slava-class cruiser of the Russian Navy is still considered an extremely scary “monster” on the oceans.
There are currently three Slava-class cruisers in service with the Russian Navy, the Moscow cruiser is the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet; Varyag cruiser is the flagship of the Pacific Fleet, the remaining cruiser, Marshal Ustinov, operated in the North Sea Fleet.
Back in the 1960s, at the height of the Cold War, the Soviet Union planned to build the Kirov-class battlecruiser to counterbalance Western aircraft carriers. However, these nuclear-powered battlecruisers have huge operating costs, therefore, the Slava class was born as a less expensive conventional alternative. The Slava class, otherwise known as the 1164 Atlant project.
The Slava-class has an overall length of 186.4m (611.54 ft), a beam of 20.8m (68.24 ft), a draught of 8.4m (27.55 ft) and the displacement is 12,490 tons. The vessel can accommodate from 476 to 529 crew members including the small air detachment. The design of Slava-class as common as any other warship, an upward-sloping bow, behind the bow is the superstructure and at the stern is a small helicopter landing deck that served the operation of a Kamov Ka-25 or Ka-27 navy helicopter or similar.
The Russian cruiser is equipped with a powerful weapon system. Featured in this cruiser’s weapon system are the 16 P-500 Bazalt long-range supersonic anti-ship missile launchers, with a range of 550 km and up to 700 km for the P.1000 improved variant. These missiles are capable of carrying a conventional warhead weighing 1 ton or a 350 kiloton nuclear warhead. At mach 2.5, this is considered one of the most effective anti-submarine and anti-carriers weapons in the world today.
In addition to the anti-ship weapons system, the cruiser is also equipped with a modern long-range surface-to-air missile system. In particular, 8 S-300F long-range air-to-air missile launchers, anti-aircraft combat range is 150km and 30km for ballistic missiles. Two OSA-MA surface-to-air missile systems, one at the front and the other at the rear, have a maximum range of 15 km and a maximum altitude of 12 km.
With comprehensive defense capabilities, the Slava-class cruiser is considered the pride of the Russian navy. In the event of a conflict, the Slava class will be the first Russian warships to enter the war. Once these warships launched fire, the possibility of the enemy being completely destroyed is possible.