The Algerian Navy's 18-year-old, Russian-built Koni-class (Project 1159) frigate Rais Korfo was sent to St. Petersburg, Russia, in the spring of 1997 for a modernization overhaul originally to have been completed in August 1998. Russian financial problems stalled the effort, however, and the 1,670-ton, 313-foot ship did not depart the Baltic until mid-November 2000. The most significant visible alterations are the replacement of the obsolete MR-302 (NATO Strut Curve) surfaceand air-search radar with a lightweight, mechanically stabilized Pozitiv-ME1.2 three-dimensional search radar, and a second MR-104 Rys (Drum Tilt) gun firecontrol radar in place of the MR-105 Turel' (Hawk Screech) atop the pilothouse. Two twin 533-mm torpedo tube sets were added on the main deck abreast the stack, and a new electronic warfare suite was fitted. A second Algerian Koni is to begin a similar refit this spring, and the third ship will follow later.
By A. D. Baker III