Tashkent-class destroyer

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Esploratore veloce Tashkent, 1936 - san dl SAN IMG-00001374.jpg
Shipyard right elevation drawing of Tashkent
Class overview
Name: Tashkent class
Operators:  Soviet Navy
Preceded by: Leningrad class
Succeeded by: Kiev class
Built: 1937–1939
In service: 1939–1942
Planned: 4
Completed: 1
Cancelled: 3
Lost: 1
General characteristics (as designed)
Type: Destroyer leader
Length: 139.7 m (458 ft 4 in) (o/a)
Beam: 13.7 m (44 ft 11 in)
Draft: 3.7 m (12 ft 2 in)
Installed power:
Propulsion: 2 shafts; 2 geared steam turbines
Speed: 42.5 knots (78.7 km/h; 48.9 mph)
Range: 5,030 nmi (9,320 km; 5,790 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)
Complement: 250

The Tashkent class (Project 20) was a single destroyer leader, built in Italy for the Soviet Navy just before World War II. Three others were ordered from shipyards in the Soviet Union, but they were cancelled before they were laid down as they were too difficult to built with the existing technology in Soviet shipyards.

Design and description[edit]

Unsatisfied with the Leningrad-class destroyer leader, the Soviets decided that they needed foreign design assistance around 1934–1935. The French were not willing to share ship plans so the Soviets turned to Italy, based on their earlier experience with the Italians during the preliminary design work for the Kirov-class heavy cruisers. They requested designs for a high-speed destroyer leader from three Italian shipbuilders and accepted the submission by Odero-Terni-Orlando (OTO) in September 1935. They would build the lead ship, named Tashkent, in their Livorno shipyard and provide assistance for the Soviets to build others in their own shipyards. Three other ships were ordered, although the only ship to receive a name was Baku, before they were all cancelled due to difficulties with adapting the Italian design to Soviet shipbuilding practices.[1]

Tashkent had an overall length of 139.7 meters (458 ft 4 in), a beam of 13.7 meters (44 ft 11 in), and a mean draft of 3.7 meters (12 ft 2 in). The ship displaced 2,893 long tons (2,939 t) at standard load and 2,680 long tons (2,720 t) at deep load. Her crew numbered 250 officers and sailors.[2] The hull was riveted with a raised forecastle and 15 compartments. The hull strength was not up to requirements in Tashkent and was increased for the Project 48 ships.

The ship had a pair of geared steam turbines, each driving one propeller, designed to produce 110,000 shaft horsepower (82,000 kW) using steam from a pair of Yarrow boilers. The turbines were housed in two separate compartments with alternating boiler rooms in a unit system layout.[3] The turbines were intended to give Tashkent a maximum speed of 42.5 knots (78.7 km/h; 48.9 mph) and she reached 43.53 knots (80.618 km/h; 50.093 mph) from 130,000 shp (97,000 kW) during her sea trials, although her armament had yet to be fitted.[4] The ship carried enough fuel oil to give her a range of 5,030 nautical miles (9,320 km; 5,790 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph).[5]

Tashkent's main armament was intended to consisted of six 130-millimeter (5.1 in) B-13 guns in three twin-gun B-31 turrets, one superfiring pair forward of the superstructure and the other mount aft of it. However, the turrets were not ready so three single mounts were used instead. Anti-aircraft defense was provided by six semi-automatic 45-millimeter (1.8 in) 21-K AA guns in single mounts as well as six 12.7-millimeter (0.50 in) DShK machine guns. They carried nine 533 mm (21.0 in) torpedo tubes in three rotating triple mounts. The ships could also carry a maximum of either 76 mines and 24 depth charges.[6] Fire control consisted of a single gunnery director on top of the bridge and an Italian-made fire-control computer, and a rangefinder aft.


The B-31 turrets were still not available in 1941 so the B-2LM turrets that were intended to arm the Kiev-class destroyer leaders and the Ognevoy-class destroyers replaced the single mounts[7] in early 1941. About the same time, the 45 mm guns were replaced by an equal number of automatic 37-millimeter (1.5 in) 70-K AA guns.[4]


Name Builder Laid down Launched Entered service Fate
Tashkent OTO, Livorno, Italy 11 January 1937[4] 28 December 1937[5] 22 August 1941[8] Sunk by aircraft, 2 July 1942 [5]
Baku (yard number 511)[4] Zavod No. 190 (Zhdanov), Leningrad Cancelled[9]
Unnamed (yard number 512)[4]
Unnamed[9] Marti South, Nikolayev?


Tashkent was painted a cobalt blue colour and was nicknamed the "blue cruiser" by Russian sailors. She served with the Black Sea Fleet and fought during the Siege of Sevastopol making 40 supply trips through the German Blockade. On 28 June 1942 she was bombed by Junkers Ju 87 Stukas and managed to reach Novorossiysk but foundered in the port on 2 July 1942. Her gun turrets were salvaged for use in the destroyer Ognevoi

In his memoirs VN Eroshenko stated that: The leader «Tashkent» steamed 27,000 miles, escorted without loss of 17 transports, carried 19,300 people, 2,538 tons of ammunition, food and other goods into Sevastopol. Held 100 live main caliber bombardments silenced 6 batteries and damaged one airfield. Shot down and damaged 13 enemy aircraft. Sank a torpedo boat


  1. ^ Rohwer & Monakov, pp. 45–46
  2. ^ Budzbon, p. 329
  3. ^ Whitley, p. 230
  4. ^ a b c d e Wright, p. 349
  5. ^ a b c Hill, p. 44
  6. ^ Hill, pp. 42–43
  7. ^ Hill, p. 42
  8. ^ Wright, p. 350
  9. ^ a b Rohwer & Monakov, p. 46


  • Budzbon, Przemysaw (1980). "Soviet Union". In Chesneau, Roger. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922–1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. pp. 318–346. ISBN 0-85177-146-7.
  • Campbell, John (1985). Naval Weapons of World War II. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-459-4.
  • Hill, Alexander (2018). Soviet Destroyers of World War II. Oxford: Osprey Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4728-2256-7.
  • Kachur, Pavel (2008). "Гончие псы" Красного флота. "Ташкент", "Баку", "Ленинград" [Hounds of the Red Fleet: Tashkent, Baku, Leningrad] (in Russian). Moscow: Yauza/Eksmo. ISBN 978-5-699-31614-4.
  • Patyanin, Sergey (2009). Korabli Vtoroy Mirovoy voyni. Voyenno-morskoy flot SSSR [Ships of World War II. Navy of the USSR]. "Morskaya Kampaniya" Nr 3(24)/2009, pp. 12–13 (in Russian)
  • Platonov, Andrey (2002). Enciklopediya sovyetskih nadvodnyh korabley. 1941–1945. Saint Petersburg: Poligon, pp. 143–145. ISBN 5-89173-178-9. (in Russian)
  • Rohwer, Jürgen (2005). Chronology of the War at Sea 1939-1945: The Naval History of World War Two (Third Revised ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-59114-119-2.
  • Rohwer, Jürgen & Monakov, Mikhail S. (2001). Stalin's Ocean-Going Fleet. London: Frank Cass. ISBN 0-7146-4895-7.
  • Whitley, M. J. (1988). Destroyers of World War 2. London: Cassell Publishing. ISBN 1-85409-521-8.
  • Wright, Christopher C. (1994). "The Fate of the Tashkent". Warship International. International Naval Research Organization. XXXI (4): 348–360. ISSN 0043-0374.

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