PhotogaleriesKALIBR cruise missiles gallery 2024-01-252024-01-29 Javier (3M54E1 image). The Kalibr missiles come from two failed projects carried out between 1975 and 1990. One consisted of the development of the 3M10 strategic nuclear cruise missile by the design bureau Novator, and the other was the development of the Alfa anti-ship missile by Biryuza OKR. Both projects were canceled due to delays, design problems and finally the collapse of the USSR in 1990. Despite the setbacks, work continued and during the 1993 International Aviation and Space Show (MAKS-93), the Kalibr cruise missile was officially presented. The new missile was offered to cover different types of threats and could be launched from practically any air, land or naval platform, allowing great flexibility of use. Since then numerous variants of the Kalibr missile have been made, both for the Russian Navy and for the export market. (3M14AE image). The Kalibr cruise missile family is distributed in three main variants called 3M14 Biryuza (land attack), 3M54 Kalibr (anti-ship) and 91R (anti-submarine). Furthermore, within each variant there are different types of missiles, depending on the launch platform and the type of targets. The Kalibr family offers supersonic and subsonic missiles, both differing in that the supersonic ones have a second propulsion stage that boosts the missile during the final approach to the target, while the subsonic missiles have a greater range. Missiles can be differentiated according to their designation, since those with the suffix “1” are subsonic and the variants with suffix “E” are those intended for export. In the West the 3M14 land attack variant is known as “SS-N-30A” and the 3M54 anti-ship variant is known as “SS-N-27 Sizzler” according to the NATO designation. (Club-K image). The missiles also have a designation that indicates the type of platform from which they are launched. Russian submarine-launched 3M14K missiles carry the “Kalibr-PL” marking, while warship-launched 3M14T missiles carry the “Kalibr-NK” marking. In addition, a new range of missiles called “Kalibr-M” (improved) is under development, which can be launched from air, land and naval platforms. Export variants bear the “Club” marking and generally have lower capacities than the Russian variants. The variants used by surface ships are launched from vertical launching systems (VLS) and those for submarine (underwater) launch all have a diameter of 533mm and are launched from torpedo tubes. The air launched variants can go inside a container that is disposed of after launch and the coastal defense variants are launched from concealed containers and from 8×8 heavy trucks. (91RE1 image). The variants of the Kalibr missile that are in service with the Russian Navy are the submarine-launched 3M14K (land attack), 3M54K (anti-ship) and 91R1 (anti-submarine), and the warship-launched 3M14T (land attack) and 3M54T (anti-ship). The variants for export are quite extensive and include air-launched “Club-A” missiles (3M54AE – 3M54AE1 – 3M14AE), “Club-K” (3M54E2 – 3M54KE – 3M54KE1 – 3M14E1 – 3M14KE – 3M14KE1) launched from disguised containers that can be installed on trucks, merchant ships or trains, “Club-M” for coastal defense (3M54E2 – 3M54KE – 3M54KE1 – 3M14E1 – 3M14KE – 3M14KE1) launched from a 8×8 truck, “Club-N” launched from warships (3M54TE – 3M54TE1 – 3M14TE – 91RTE2), “Club-S” launched from submarines (3M54E – 3M54E1 – 3M14E – 91RE1) and “Club-T” for coastal defense (3M54E2 – 3M14E1) launched from a 8×8 truck. (Club-M image). These missiles have been designed to share as many components as possible to facilitate their manufacturing. Mainly, there are differences between the boosters, (different in those launched from submarines than those launched from ships), and the warheads, heavier in the subsonic variants. The land-attack variants have an estimated range between 1,500 and 2,500km, the anti-ship variants between 220 and 650km, the air-launched variants about 300km, the anti-submarine variants between 40 and 50km and the coastal defense variants have 220km against ships and 300km against ground targets. However, the range question in the land attack variants is always surrounded by controversy due to political issues. (91RTE2 image). The Kalibr cruise missiles have been designed using all the technological advances seeking maximum efficiency and capacity. Its cylindrical airframe is built with composite materials and designed to minimize radar cross-section and improve its aerodynamics during flight. The 3M14 and 3M54 series missiles are equipped with a turbojet engine while the 91R anti-submarine missiles have a multi-stage solid-fuel rocket engine that gives them great thrust and acceleration. The supersonic variants reach a terminal speed of Mach 2.9 while the subsonic variants have a speed of Mach 0.8. The Kalibr can fly at a maximum altitude of 1,000 meters, but normally fly between 50 and 150 meters high. The anti-ship variants fly towards their target about 20 meters above the waves. (3M14E image). The anti-ship Kalibr missiles are guided during flight by an inertial navigation system (INS) and for the terminal guidance phase they carry an active radar seeker to find and destroy the target. The Kalibr land attack variant use an inertial/doppler guidance system in flight along with a GPS/GLONASS navigation receiver system to ensure correct positioning as well as to make corrections in flight. The anti-submarine Kalibr have an inertial guidance system linked to an acoustic target seeker. It is ensured that these missiles are capable of making sudden changes in trajectory during flight in order to avoid being shot down by enemy defenses. (3M14E image). The Kalibr family have different warheads depending on the variant. The land attack variants have conventional 450 kg high explosive warheads or 50 kiloton thermonuclear warheads (Russian missiles only). The anti-ship versions have conventional 200 or 400kg high-explosive warheads and the anti-submarine missiles have a 500kg warhead containing a high-speed homing torpedo with a sonar target seeker. These missiles are quite accurate and it appears that the Russian land attack variants guided by GLONASS (GPS) have a CEP of 2-3 meters while the export land attack variants without GPS guidance have a CEP of about 50 meters. (3M14T image). The Russian Navy uses Kalibr missiles on Akula, Kilo, Lada, Oscar II and Yasen class submarines, Buyan-M, Gremyashchy and Karakurt class corvettes and Admiral Gorshkov, Admiral Grigorovich and Gepard class frigates. These missiles have been exported to Algeria, China, Iran and Vietnam (Club-S variant) which carry them on their Kilo class submarines and to India, which carry them in their Sindhughosh class submarines (Club-S variant) and Talwar class frigates (Club-N variant). (3M54E image). Since their appearance in the mid-90s, Kalibr missiles have been incorporated into the Russian Navy progressively, but it was not until October 7, 2015 when they were used in combat for the first time during the Syrian Civil War. That day, 26 3M14T (Kalibr-NK) land attack missiles were launched against 11 targets located in Idlib, Aleppo and Raqqa from about 1,500km away. In total, it is estimated that the Russian Navy fired around 100 Kalibr missiles from October 2015 to February 2018 during the operations in Syria. (3M14T image). Despite their debut during the Syrian Civil War, the Kalibr missiles have become known worldwide following the Russian intervention in Ukraine, which began in February 2022. Since then, it is estimated that between 300 and 400 missiles have been launched. According to a report from the Ukrainian MoD, Russia launched about 230 missiles in the first 7 months of war, until October 2022. As a consequence of the economic sanctions and embargoes imposed on Russia by the international community, the launch of these missiles during 2023 has been minor due to manufacturing problems. However, attacks with Kalibr missiles have continued, mainly against energy facilities.