The Russian newest Black Sea frigate Admiral Essen joined the navy’s permanent task force in the Mediterranean Sea after transiting the Strait of Gibraltar.
According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, Admiral Essen is joining sister ship Admiral Grigorovich to carry out their Mediterranean Sea tasks. The two frigates are likely to support Russian operations in Syria.
Project 11356 frigates are armed with Kalibr-NK cruise missiles and the Shtil-1 medium-range surface-to-air missile system. The frigates are designed for anti-ship and anti-submarine warfare in the high seas, and anti-aircraft actions both independently and as an escort ship. Measuring 124,8 meters in length, the frigates displace 3620 tonnes.
The frigates embark one Ка-28 or Ка-31 helicopter in hangar and feature the Russian-built Fregat-MAE-4k General detection and target designation radar designed for detection of air and surface targets and output of target designation data to firing units.
Admiral Essen was commissioned into the navy in June 2016.