- Russia ordered its new Russian frigate Admiral Makarov just before 2017.
- This ship is an Admiral Grigorovich class frigate. However, plans for its full implementation are in jeopardy.
- Due to problems with larger ships, the Russian Navy is currently dependent on corvettes to complete its missions. However, it is slowly adding frigates to its fleet.
What is the Admiral Makarov?
- The Admiral Makarov, a frigate of the Admiral Grigorovich class that weighs in at 4,000 tonnes, is called the Admiral Makarov.
- The Moskva warship, at 12,490 tonnes, was three times larger.
- Ordered it into the Russian navy at the end of 2017.
- The UK Armed Forces then tracked it as it crossed the English Channel to join Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, the Moskva flagship.
- As part of Moscow’s support for Bashar Assad, Admiral Makarov was involved in Russian operations in the Mediterranean Sea.
- The ship was part of the blockade formed around Ukrainian ports since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. It may also have been involved with some of Moscow’s missile strikes directed at Ukraine.
What happened to the Admiral Makarov?
Anton Gerashchenko was an advisor to President Volodymyr Zalesky. He claimed a Ukrainian missile hit Admiral Makarov on Friday (6th May).
Admiral Makarov BBC news Gerashchenko reported that the warship had been hit by a ‘Neptune missile,’ the same anti-ship missile used to sink the Moskva. It had also burst into flames.According to some, it was in the vicinity of Zmiinyi Island (also known as Snake Island) when the attack occurred.The Russian government has not commented on the alleged strike Dumskaya, a Ukrainian state news website, reported that Russian aircraft and naval ships have left annexed Crimea to help Admiral Makarov.According to reports, the ship has between 180 and 200 people aboard.
On April 13, the Black Sea attacked the Russian cruiser Moskva. Unconfirmed reports claim that the Russian frigate Admiral Makarov also was attacked on May 6. As details emerge, four critical questions arise:
First, was it possible that these vessels, equipped with air defense systems of reputation, were taken by surprise? If so, how did this happen? No evidence has been found to suggest that Russian sailors tried to shoot down Ukrainian missiles.
Second, was there something special about the Ukrainian missiles that made them unrecognisable?
The third and most important is why did neither or both of the ships respond?
Fourth, What role did the US play in the attack against these two ships?
Russian warships have modern air defenses that combine excellent radars with effective interceptor missiles. Two systems are available to the Moskva: the older Osa-MA (SS-N-4), which is supposed to counter inbound missiles, and the S-300F, which is more powerful and can be used for missile and air defense.
The Makarov has the 3S90M UK air defense system with the 9m317m interceptor. These have a very long range of up to 130km (80 miles). The BUK is an essential and deadly air defense cluster that includes radars, transporter or launch tube tubes, interceptor missiles, and missiles. The BUK has a response time of 10 to 15 seconds from target detection.
The anti-ship Neptune Ukrainian missile that hit the Moskva was a subsonic cruise missile capable of sea-skimming and flying at speeds up to 900 km/h (559mph).
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Neptune would take six minutes to reach a target 60 miles from shore. At 20 miles, it takes slightly more than 2 minutes. Although sea skimmers are challenging to spot, Neptune is not stealthy. It is based on the Russian KH-35 anti-ship ballistic missile.
Concerning the Makarov: Given its vulnerability and location, it is reasonable to suppose that it was either a Neptune-made missile or a slow-flying drone like the Turkish-made Bayraktar.
The Makarov and the Moskva had layered defenses that included air defense missiles and rapid-fire guns. MANPAD ground and air missiles were also available, along with the most recent Russian MANPAD, Verba (9K333).
It’s a little presumption that the layers are integrated. The US didn’t, but it should. However, all stations should be alerted if there is a threat.
As far as current information can tell, the Russian ship did not fight back in either case. Why didn’t one or both of them fight, even though there were excellent air defenses (the Makarov was only put into service in 2015), which included radars and electronic countermeasures?
The P-8A controversy
Officials from Ukraine claim that the US helped target the Moskva. Officially, the Pentagon denies this – just as it denied reports that US overhead missiles were targeting Russian generals during the Ukraine war.
In the Moskva case, we can say that there was a P-8A Navy surveillance and anti-submarine-warfare aircraft in the Black Sea in the ship’s vicinity. Are you aiming at all the P-8A did?
The Boeing P-8A, a modified 737 from Boeing, replaces the P-3 anti-submarine surveillance plane. The P-8A, introduced into the US fleet in 2013, can carry sonars to detect submerged ships. It can also launch Harpoon anti-ship missiles and torpedoes.
There is no evidence that P-8A had launched weapons in the case of Moskva. It would be a dangerous move to allow the US to directly enter the Ukraine war without Congressional authorization or public presidential authorization. It is possible to do anything. Sure, the P-8A and Russian warships or submarines would have tested onboard systems against major Russian naval combatants.
BAE Systems has created an extensive AN/ALR 55 electronic countermeasures suite for the P-8A. These systems are brand new and were installed by BAE Systems in the last year or a few months if they were on P-8s in the Black Sea area.
Although the ALR-55 is classified in many ways, it can jam enemy radars and possibly spoof radars. Theoretically, the US Navy P-8A could be connected in real-time or near-real-time to Ukraine’s Neptune operator, and it could blank out the radars of the Russian ships.
It is clear that the P-8A coordinated with the Ukrainians. This could have been via satellite connections or direct communication. Handoffs may also have taken place to NATO and US forces and then to the Ukrainians. What was the P-8A doing instead, shadowing Russian ships in international water, posing a risk of confrontation?
It is impossible to prove that the US Navy used radar jamming against Russian targets. Bad electronics, bad operators, and outside jamming or spoofing are all possible options for Russian ships. Two ships have been hit now, so jamming or spoofing is possible. We will never know the truth.