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Radar Patrol Ship (RLD)

The appearance of qualitatively new military equipment at the beginning of the second post-war decade opened up the prospect of creating surface ships of fundamentally new types and classes with sharply increased offensive and defensive capabilities. A radar patrol [Radiolokacionnyy Dozor - RLD] ship is a special design with enhanced radar. It is forward deployed to build up (or create) a radar field in the direction of the most probable air flight, the actions of their aircraft, along the route of the convoy or the landing squad, solving other problems. Designed for radar tracking.

Radar Picket is a radar-quipped station, ship, submarine, plane or vehicle used to increase the radar detection range around a force to protect it from a surprise attack, usually an air attack. The radar picket can also be equipped to direct friendly fighters to intercept the enemy. During the Cold War, the U.S. Navy expanded the concept of radar patrol. The wartime radar picket destroyers (DDR) were retained, as well as additional DDRS, destroyer escorts (DER) and submarines (SSR) were converted and built 1946-1955. The concept was that each group would have a carrier of radar pickets deployed around it for early warning of a growing Soviet-class air-to-surface missile attack threat.

A Soviet ship was used as a radar patrol for the first time at the beginning of World War II on the Black Sea Fleet in the region of Sevastopol . An experienced Redut-K radar was installed on the Molotov cruiser . From June 22 to November 1, 1941, the cruiser was based in Sevastopol, participating in the air defense of the Black Sea Fleet. On June 24, telephone communication was established between the ship, the fleet headquarters and the command post.Air defense, due to which the data of the Redut-K station were reported to the fleet headquarters by cable. The station sometimes worked 20 hours a day, but it never failed.

Twenty T43-class minesweepers were converted to the KVN-50 class of radar patrol vessels between 1955 and 1959. The modification involved replacing the stern gun turret with a Rest-A or Big Net radar knife. Most were withdrawn in 1970 or relegated to training duties, with the latter recalled in 1987. Another 14 T43-class minesweepers were converted to Project 258 KVN-6 class radar patrol vessels between 1973 and 1977 with Kaktus radars. Some of them were later changed to Project 258M ships with Rubka (NATO: Strut curve ) radar.

Three T58-class minesweepers were converted into a ship radar picket between 1975 and 1977, replacing aft 57mm turret guns with the Rest-B Knife radar.

Four Wwhiskey-class submarines were converted to Project 640 radar patrol boats between 1959 and 1963 by installing a sail radar boat in an enlarged wheelhouse. They were known in NATO as the "Whiskey Canvas Bag" made of canvas coverings often placed over the radar when NATO aircraft arrived. Although U.S. submarine radar patrols were designed to protect the fleet, the 640 project was designed to provide warning of air raids on Soviet coastal territory.

Three other projects were canceled before transformations were made.

  • Project 959 - further conversion of the T58 class minesweeper with upgraded radar
  • Project 962 - the fourth type of cruiser after KRESTA I, KRESTA II and Kara design
  • Project 996 - Transformation of the Sovremeny Destroyer Class

In the building of Project 58, a radar patrol ship was designed and laid down - Project 62, but construction was quickly stopped. And the ship turned out to be very good, because the experience of ships of projects 58 and 61 was taken into account. Subsequently, over the course of several decades, attempts were made to build radar patrol ships with staff functions, but they did not build a specialized ship.

By the mid-1960s, the development of over-horizon radar made the barrier forces and guard- class radar ships obsolete. Ground systems then had the opportunity to see further their immediately deployed radar systems.

Some official data, for obvious reasons, remain mostly classified for official use or are classified and responsibility for their disclosure is criminally liable. But there is a curious gap in the public literature, since the discussions of other kindred systems and programs of this epoch are dreadfully voluminous. Surprisingly, there was not a single modern decent special consolidated reference book about domestic radio-technical means of monitoring and warning the navy of the second half of the 1940s - 1950s. And they, as you know, it was then that they went massively into development and into service. In fact, all that is available is sections in general books on the history of the development of radar technology, such as this and that, eg. Unfortunately, they are usually either a Soviet or a small-departmental publication. Both circumstances impose understandable restrictions on the completeness of information, or its availability. And unofficial sources have a different number of errors and inaccuracies, sometimes reaching to the level of fables and fairy tales.

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Page last modified: 23-01-2020 17:46:55 ZULU