Russia was engaged in a lot of training exercises and shows of strength last year. Its Northern Fleet has now released an explosive compilation video, showcasing its greatest hits. The video shows several large guns, surface-to-air and anti-ship missiles, torpedoes and shells being fired from various vessels.
Some of the weapons on display -- including the ships and aircraft that are seen in the short but intense video set to hard rock music -- were identified by the War Zone (TWZ) in one of its reports. Russia's Northern Fleet is their largest of four fleets and also has control over their most important ship- the Kuznetsov, as well as a major portion of the Navy's "large surface combatants" like the "Pyotr Velikiy".
The Northern Fleet operates in the far north, near and around the Arctic circle, an area that is growing in strategic importance for various powers in the region. Also, some of the world's largest oil and natural gas deposits are found here.
The video opens with the Kuznetsov's flight deck which have the Su-33 and MiG-29K on it. These fighter jets were sent to fight the Islamic State in Syria from the Khmeimim Air Base in Latakia Province. Other clips involving the carrier include it firing a 3K95 Kinzhal surface-to-air missile, which is a Navy variant of the land-based Tor system. The Kuznetsov is also seen deploying anti-missile decoys in one shot.
Of particular interest is the way the 3K95 missiles, also known as the SAN-9 Gauntlet, are arranged inside an eight-tube rotating vertical launcher, rotating and bringing them to the position before they are fired. Pyotr Velikiy and Marshal Ustinov both have long range. S-300 SAMs also have rotating vertical launchers, but TWZ notes that they are significantly larger and make use of a massive worm gear that twists them and places them in position. The S-300 systems on land are handled by large, wheeled transports that erect the launching tubes before firing the missiles.
Pyotr Velikiy launches a huge anti-ship missile called the Shipwreck by Nato. Russia calls it the P-700 Granit anti-ship missile. In between the missile launches in the video, there are several shots of the ships firing their twin 130mm AK-130 main guns, as well as their Kashtan and AK-630, a turreted, six-barrel 30mm cannon.
Another interesting portion of the video shows how a torpedo is launched from the Marshal Ustinov. Placed near the waterline, it is in the form of a hatch that sits flush with the hull and when needed, it opens out and fires torpedoes from a five-tube launcher.