SEVASTOPOL, August 19. /TASS/. The Project 12700 latest minesweeper that entered service with the Russian Navy in January this year is sailing through the North Sea towards the English Channel on its way to the home base of Sevastopol, the Black Sea Fleet’s press office reported on Monday.
"The Project 12700 latest oceanic minesweeper Ivan Antonov is making a transit from the Baltic Fleet to the Black Sea Fleet’s main naval base, the hero city of Sevastopol. The warship is currently sailing through the North Sea towards the English Channel for subsequently entering the Atlantic Ocean. This is the first inter-fleet passage for the ship, during which the crew will cover over 5,000 nautical miles and hold a series of shipboard drills in accordance with its designation," the press office said in a statement.
The ship’s crew took part in Russia’s Main Naval Parade in St. Petersburg on July 28, the Fleet’s press office said.
The oceanic base type minesweeper Ivan Antonov is the third built and the second serial-produced ship of this type. The contract for its construction was signed with Russia’s Defense Ministry in April 2014. It was laid down at the Sredne-Nevsky Shipyard in St. Petersburg in northwest Russia on January 25, 2017 and floated out on April 25, 2018. The latest mine countermeasures ship was delivered to the Russian Navy on January 26.
Project 12700 mine countermeasures vessels (minesweepers) have their hull made of glass-fiber reinforced plastic. As its advantage, this solution provides for the ship’s higher strength compared to the steel hull. The hull made of the monolith glass-fiber reinforced plastic has a longer service life than the hull made of low-magnetic steel while its weight is considerably smaller.
Project 12700 warships displace about 900 tonnes and are over 60 meters long and 10 meters wide. They develop a speed of 16.5 knots and have a crew of 44. The warship can use various mine-sweeps, as well as remotely-operated and autonomous underwater drones.