SHIP CLASS: Mihail Kogalniceanu-class
SHIPS-IN-CLASS (3): Mihail Kogalniceanu (F45); Ion C. Bratianu (F46); Lascar Catargiu (F47)
PROPULSION: 2 x Marine diesel units developing 4,400 horsepower and driving 2 x Shafts.
Detailing the development and operational history of the Mihail Kogalniceanu (class) River Monitor Vessel.
Entry last updated on 8/21/2017.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The modern Romanian Armed Forces currently (2017) relies on three river monitors belonging to the Mihail Kogalniceanu-class. The class was built in-Romania-for-Romania and encompasses lead ship Mihail Kogalniceanu (F45) and sisters Ion C. Bratianu (F46) and Lascar Catargiu (F47). The ships were commissioned in 1993, 1994 and 1996, respectively, and all maintain an active status in the Romanian fleet today (2017).
As river monitors, the class is called to function primarily in riverine / close-to-shore settings so they carry very shallow draughts for such work. Their aim is in supporting local ground forces or subduing enemy presences along the shoreline through cannon, machine gun and rocket fire. The ships succeeded the Smardan-class river monitors which also remain in service (five total ships).
The Mihail Kogalniceanu-class displaces 520 tonnes under standard load and 550 tonnes under full load. Overall length is 170.10 feet with a beam of 29.5 feet and a draught of 5.2 feet. Power is from a pair of marine diesel units developing 4,400 horsepower and driving 2 x shafts under stern. Maximum achievable speed is 16 knots in open water. The crew complement numbers between 50 and 60 personnel.
Armament is at the heart of the class, led by 2 x 100mm turreted main guns. This is backed by 2 x 30mm cannon installations in twin-gunned mountings. There are also 2 x 14.5 heavy machine guns set in quadruple mounts and 2 x 40-shot 122mm Multiple Rocket Launch (MRL) system. For close-in air defense, the Strela-2M MAN-Portable Air Defense (MANPAD) Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) launcher is carried aboard. This armament array is very similar to that as carried by Soviet/Russian river boats of similar form and function - allowing the vessel to deal with multiple threat types.
The ship's profile incorporates a low deck line running cleanly from bow to stern. Primary turrets are set over the forecastle and over the stern. The bridge is integrated into the low-profile superstructure seated amidships. Atop this structure is the communications/sensors mast as well as several gun emplacements. The vessel is not necessarily designed for blue water work but can, in some instances, be used as a coastal patrol solution if sea states allow it.