Until October 7, few knew about the existence of the Kalibr cruise missiles: in addition to the developers and military specialists involved in the operation, a rather narrow circle of experts and representatives of Rosoboronexport. However, by the evening of that day, after a devastatingly accurate strike by the Calibers on IS targets by the ships of the Caspian Naval Flotilla, everything changed. The whole world started talking about the formidable Russian miracle weapon.
From idea to implementation
It is worth adding more than 30 previous years to the 1, 500 kilometers covered by the "Calibers" on the way to the Syrian terrorist bases. Then, back in 1983, experts from the Novator Design Bureau, under the leadership of General Designer Lev Veniaminovich Lyuliev, began to develop the Alpha anti-ship missile.
The prototype of "Caliber" - cruise missile "Alpha"
In the future, "Alpha" became a kind of "matryoshka", from which at different times the anti-ship missile 3M54, the cruise missile "Granat" and its continuation - the universal system "Caliber" equipped with the KR 3M14, as well as the anti-submarine 91 P1 (RT2) ...
Unique means universal
To the credit of the creators, the Caliber rocket turned out to be universal. As a result, 4 varieties were created - for submarines, surface ships, aviation and coastal units. The tests of the "underwater" variant were completed more than 10 years ago. The next embodiment of the Kalibr cruise missile was the Club-K missile system.
According to many Western military experts, his appearance was, to put it mildly, an unpleasant surprise for them. The fact is that such a formidable weapon was "packed" in standard 20 and 40-pound sea (aka railway and road) containers. And this meant that in the event of a war for enemy ships, a meeting with an inconspicuous "container ship" could be fatal.
At sea and on land
Conventionally, all "Gauges" can be divided into two groups. The objects for the first group were surface objects, and for the second, ground objects.
The first group is designated 3M-54K. These are standard missiles with a penetrating warhead. This group includes three more subgroups of missiles - for firing at ranges (designation KEK), for bench training (TEUD, KEUS, KERM, etc.) and training rockets for practicing loading and unloading (KEGVM, TEGVM).
"Gauges" working on the "ground" are designated 3M-14K (T). Rocket 3M14 is a standard product, also launched from a transport and launch container. As with naval-class products, all of the aforementioned auxiliary missile subgroups are provided here.
It is worth mentioning the products in the name of which the letter "E" is found. We are talking about an export modification, which can be found at all kinds of international arms exhibitions. They differ from the standard "Calibers" of the Russian Army in a much shorter firing range, not exceeding 300 km.
When it comes to the versatility of the Caliber missiles, there are several parameters. All modifications are three-stage, solid-fuel, all have the same diameter - 533 mm (world standard), which allows them to be launched using a universal cylindrical launch module, which is installed on the corresponding carriers.
So, for example, there are 2 options for a surface ship - below deck and on deck. In the first case, it will be a vertical launcher, and in the second, at a certain angle to the horizon. Submarines can launch from their torpedo tubes.
All types of combat "Caliber" (3M-54E, 3M-54E1 and 3M-14E) have the same speed - from 0.8M on the march to 2.9M when approaching the target, flight trajectory and guidance system. There are slight differences in launch weight, warhead weight, and range.
The characteristics of the 3M-54, 3M-541 and 3M-14 missiles are classified information and are not in the public domain. According to some reports, the range of the 3M-14 missile is 2, 600 kilometers.
The Kalibr missile system brilliantly demonstrated its advantages when striking at ISIS military infrastructure in Syria. The missile ship "Dagestan" took part in the operation.