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Egypt receives Russian P-32 missile boat: spokesperson

Al Bawaba

Egypt’s military spokesperson said Saturday Russia had delivered the Egyptian navy a new B-32 class missile boat, the most modern in naval armament, according to a post on Facebook.

The missile boat comes within the framework of a military cooperation protocol between the two countries boosted after President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi had come to power. One ship is in service. In 2014, Egypt showed interest in the acquisition of the P-32 (Project 12421 Molniya) missile boat but the contract was signed in 2015.

In July 2015, the missile boat headed to the Mediterranean Sea and arrived at the port of Alexandria at the end of the month. The P-32 was handed over to the Egyptian navy on the 10th of August after participating in the inauguration of the New Suez Canal.[6]
The missile boat of Project 1242.1 is a further development of the Molniya (Lightning) family boats, developed for export. It differs from its predecessor (Project 1241RE boats) in that the outdated P-20 missile system [SS-N-2 Styx] has been replaced by the Moskit-E ( SS-N-22 Sunburn) missile system which fires supersonic antiship missiles, and that the new Garpun-Bal multirole radar system has been installed.

Trials of the first boat of the class have already been completed. The Project 1242.1 Molniya Missile Boat is intended to engage combatant ships, amphibious ships, and other vessels at open sea. It has the variety of weapons with surface-to-surface and surface-to-air capabilities. The unique radar system covers the missile entire effective range, tracing concurrently 15 targets, and assigns six designated targets under intensive EW environment. The gun fire control system detects air and surface targets, performs automatic tracking, and computes firing data. The radar which is used to detect surface targets provides fire control system with designation data for five targets at a time. The boat is also fitted with active radar jammers and IFF radar. The missile boat is equipped with the full set of navigation and communication equipment, powerful gas turbine power plant , air-conditioning and ventilation systems to provide efficient operation in any climatic conditions.

Russia has tested and put into production a new missile vessel, "Molniya ", armed with four Moskit missiles. The Molniya is a follow-on to the successful Soviet Tarantul-class missile boats. The St. Petersburg-based design company, Almaz, has developed an export version of the Molniya boat. The unique Russian missile boat "Molniya " is available in a tropical modification. The vessel can destroy surface ships, transport and landing facilities in a coastal zone and out at sea.

With its comparatively inconsiderable displacement of 550 tons, "Molniya " is equipped with four "Moskit" supersonic anti-vessel missiles. The first launch of Russia's newest supersonic anti-ship missile, the Moskit SS-N-22 Sunburn, was conducted from an export Molniya fast missile boat at the Feodosia test range late in October 1999. The boat has a radar missile target designation complex. It's the latest achievement in radio-electronic systems of this purpose. With its high noise-proof features, it can observe 15 targets simultaneously and define target destinations of six.

The complex can reach targets 500 kilometers off. Besides strike missile guns, the boat has anti-aircraft missile weapons and automatic artillery installations. It has 12 portable anti-aircraft missile complexes "Igla" meant to hit air targets in conditions of natural visibility. The on-board rapid-fire artillery guns are meant to destroy air, surface and coastal targets. They can also be used to liquidate floating mines. "Molniya " also has two launchers and combined-interference shells to protect targets from anti-boat weapons with different guidance systems.

The boats' relatively small size enables them to blend in with coastal merchant and fishing traffic, making them difficult to locate and target. With a skilled operator, Russian-built patrol craft armed with Sunburn antiship missiles would be a significant threat to any seagoing adversary. The boat's high navigation characteristics allow it to use weapons in stormy weather with wind force 5 and ensures safety in the sea with wind force 8. Thanks to its sophisticated weapons, high running features, the boat can control a total area of water up to 5 thousand square nautical miles. The boat's speed is up to 38 knots, sailing range up to 2,400 miles, crew 44 members.

The missile boat of Project 1241.8 has been developed on the same basic platform as the Project 1242.1 boat. It differs from the predecessor by the missile armament only: it carries 16 Kh-35 [SSN-X-25 Switchblade] missiles of the Uran-E system instead of 4 missiles of the Moskit-E (SS-N-22 Sunburn) system. The Uran-E missile characteristics are similar to those of American Harpoons, but the missile boats of Project 12418 carry twice more missiles on board. The boats can be delivered to customers one year after signing a contract.

A group of Egyptian navy officers have been dispatched to Russia to get training courses on this new missile boat, the spokesperson added.
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