Russia is close to completing its first STEALTH warship

Russia is close to completing its first STEALTH warship capable of avoiding detection by enemy vessels

  • Warship armed with cruise missiles, AA missiles and artillery, state media said 
  • Sleek design and radar-asorbent coating will enable Mercury to dodge detection
  • Hull is complete and she will be delivered to the navy next year, RIA reported 

Russia is close to completing its first stealth warship that will be capable of avoiding detection by enemy vessels, state media reported on Tuesday.

The hull of the Mercury naval corvette, dubbed Project 20386, has been built and the vessel is expected to be delivered to the navy next year, RIA reported.

The warship will be armed with cruise missiles, anti-aircraft missiles and artillery, as well as being capable of hunting down submarines.  

The Mercury will have a radar-absorbent coating as well as a sleek design with minimal protrusions and crevices on her surface to help avoid detection, according to the Kremlin mouthpiece. 

An artist’s impression of the Mercury, dubbed Project 20386. The hull has been completed and it would be delivered to the navy next year, according to Russian state media

Russia has incorporated stealth technology such as a radar-absorbing coating into some of its navy vessels, but those ships have not had full stealth technology, RIA said.

Vladimir Putin had invested heavily in the navy in recent years, though the Defence Ministry’s projects have been beset by Western sanctions. Political ties with the West are at their worst since the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union.

Before the annexation of Crimea in 2014, it was reported that Russia was going to axe plans for a stealth vessel altogether.

The Izvestia daily newspaper quoted a military source in 2013 who claimed the ship was going to be too expensive, with costs running to 18 billion rubles (£175 million), and that the weaponry proposed was ‘excessive.’

The source said the Kalibr cruise missiles were unnecessary. 

And in April, Russia’s premier defence journal, The Military Review, ran an article which shredded the Mercury project. 

The report also cited lack of equipment to kit the vessel out and design flaws. 

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