Find a Security Clearance Job!


Zvezda Kh-35
SSC-6 Sennight
SS-N-25 Switchblade 3M24 Uran

The Kh-35E (3M-24E) anti-ship missile are a standardized guided weapon that can be also launched from the Uran-E shipborne missile system, tactical and naval combat aircraft, search and patrol planes/helicopters. The anti-missile system is designed for destroying surface warships with the displacement of up to 5,000 tonnes and sea-going transport vehicles.

The SS-C-6 is designated as "Sennight", an archaic word for the space of seven nights and days, also known as a week. The Kh-35E (3M-24E) missiles can be employed in fair and adverse weather conditions, by day and night, under enemy fire and electronic countermeasures. The missile has low signatures thanks to its small dimensions, sea-skimming capability and a special guidance algorithm, ensuring highly secure operational modes of the active radar seeker.

The Kh-35E (3M-24E) missiles are kept in sealed canisters that ensure high reliability of the systems in adverse weather conditions and cut maintenance costs.

The Bal-E missile system and the Kh-35E (3M-24E) are export versions. The articles without E-index operational with the RF Armed Forced have slightly different capabilities. The state acceptance tests were successfully completed in 2004. New missiles system will be put into service with all the four Navies of the RF.

The Rubezh coastal missile system was put out of service in 2006 and replaced by a new Bal-E mobile coast-based missile system. The first systems of the kind were delivered to Kamtchatka.

It has always been a crucial task to provide the coverage of coastlines, naval bases and other coastal facilities. The history of the Navies of the two previous centuries can give a lot of examples of deploying powerful artillery defence systems on the basis of sophisticated fortifications.

But in modern conditions such stationary systems are rather vulnerable. That is why they are replaced by mobile defence systems equipped with the weaponry and capable of making a precise and massive strike on surface targets from an unexpected location and, having been quickly redeployed in a new area, be ready for the repeated salvo. The Bal-E is one of such coast-based missile systems, aimed at controlling straits and territorial waters, protecting naval basis, coastlines and facilities. It is characterized by high mobility, great combat capability and enhanced lethality. The system comprises a self-propelled command, control and communications post, a self-propelled launcher with anti-ship missiles in canisters and a transporting-reloading vehicle intended for preparing the repeated salvo.

It is not a secret that changing the firing position usually means that much time is needed for the lock-on in a new area, i.e. position finding. Night vision devices, navigation equipment, topographical control and orientation aids ensure fast preparation of the system for completing a new mission. The Bal-E deployment time is 10 minutes.

When destroying boat-type targets the system fires individual missiles. But when the targets are large-size ships (destroyers and the like) it is clear that one missile will not jeopardize their combat capabilities. The designers have made their best. The Bal-E missile system can make a salvo of up to 32 (!) missiles, successively launched in less than 3 seconds. The unit of fire consists of 64 missiles. In other words, the enemy will have to think twice before measuring the strength with such a rival.

Moreover, the system has a number of other advantages, what make it possible to employ it against a wide range of surface targets. The command and control post provides centralized targeting and optimal target assignment between the launchers. The system includes precision channels using active and passive radar aids that enable implementing a flexible strategy for covert surface target acquisition and tracking even under electronic countermeasures.

Provision is made for receiving and using operational data from hight-command posts and external reconnaissance and targeting means. In other words, the Bal-E may act as an individual combat unit and as a part of a centralized system of defence aids.

On 15 February 2012 the head of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation Mikhail Dmitriyev said that Russia and Vietnam were planning to start in 2012 joint production of a modified anti-ship missile. We are planning to build facilities in Vietnam for the production of a version of the Russian Uran [SS-N-25 Switchblade] missile in a project that is similar to joint Russian-Indian production of the BrahMos missile, Dmitriyev said. Russian-Indian joint venture BrahMos Aerospace Ltd, set up in 1998, manufactures supersonic cruise missiles based on the Russian-designed NPO Mashinostroyenie 3M55 Yakhont (SS-N-26). Sea- and ground-launched versions have been successfully tested and put into service with the Indian Army and Navy.

Russias principal new defense product for 2015 was the winged KH-35U Uran missile. Its special feature is its unique self-guided head, which is immune to enemy radar interference. It works in two modes: active, when the missile turns on its guiding head for a split second to find the target, and passive, when it does not scan the space around it to detect the target, but merely perceives the impulses emitted by the target.

The Americans were very interested in this characteristic and wanted to purchase KH-35U self-guided missile heads for their Harpoon anti-ship missiles. The KH-35U attacks the target at the height of about three meters above sea level - lower than the ship's deck, which makes detecting it difficult for radar stations. Considering that all anti-aircraft systems work in the upper hemisphere, even if the KH-35U is detected, shooting it down is still not easy.

Such missiles can be placed on surface ships and in SSC-6 shore missile complexes. This system consists of two commanding machines, four launching installations, each equipped with eight batteries of missiles, and four transport loaders equipped with 32 secondary discharge missiles. It only takes minutes to deploy the complex which is capable of covering 220 miles of shoreline - and for it to find and hit its target.

While Russia wants to project the image that it has the capacity to hit ships in the Danish straits or near the western shore of the Baltic, the organic fire control radar of the Bastion-P cannot see beyond the radar horizon (normally 40 km at sea level). This limits the effective range of the system unless an external (airborne or forward-based) sensor can be used. During the Cold War, Soviet naval doctrine called for maritime reconnaissance aircraft to provide targeting data and mid-course guidance for anti-ship missiles launched by other platforms. Nowadays, with the emphasis on operations closer to home shores, this service is mainly provided by radars mounted on Ka-32 helicopters. In the not too distant future it could probably also be provided by less vulnerable drones.

Join the mailing list

Unconventional Threat podcast - Threats Foreign and Domestic: 'In Episode One of Unconventional Threat, we identify and examine a range of threats, both foreign and domestic, that are endangering the integrity of our democracy'

Page last modified: 10-04-2019 10:17:13 ZULU