Russian submarines exchange torpedo fire in Baltic exercises

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Despite the challenges of the Ukraine War, the Russian Navy continues to show its power with its submarines. A report by state news agency TASS revealed that the Russian Navy announced that the submarines “Novorossiysk” and “Dmitrov” recently carried out a training exercise in the Baltic Sea, showcasing the skills of its diesel-electric submarines. The press release stated: “In the Baltic Sea, after anti-submarine exercises, the ‘Novorossiysk’ crew performed a torpedo attack using practice ammunition [without a warhead].”

During the exercise, the submarines practiced combat scenarios against each other. The press service reported that the crews worked on maneuvers to avoid enemy attacks and improve intra-ship operations during both training and combat tasks in the anti-submarine exercise. They also conducted drills to detect and track submarines representing a hypothetical enemy. After their torpedo-launching exercise, the submariners continued with their planned combat training in the Baltic Sea.

These drills are crucial due to rising tensions between Russia and NATO in the Baltic region. Recently, Russia tried to change the maritime border in the eastern Baltic Sea, causing more tension with NATO, but the plan was later withdrawn.

Russian submarines exchange torpedo fire in Baltic exercises
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

It’s interesting how Russia uses its submarines to show power and send messages to its rivals. This was clear when Russia’s Kazan, a nuclear-powered submarine, visited Cuba with other ships for a military drill in the Caribbean.

During its journey, the Russian nuclear submarine got close to the US coast. Traveling from Norway to Cuba, the Russian group, led by the frigate Admiral Gorshkov with Zircon hypersonic missiles, was closely monitored by a NATO P-8 ‘Poseidon’ anti-submarine aircraft.

The submarine was also spotted near Scotland’s west coast on its way to Cuba. This area is near the HM Naval Base Clyde at Faslane, which is home to the UK’s nuclear submarines and other Royal Navy ships.

Western nations, including the United States, dismissed concerns about the Russian submarine being nearby. Still, its close presence in the U.S. raised fears of possible spying.

This port visit occurred while the U.S. watched closely amidst rising tensions in the Ukraine-Russia conflict, with NATO increasing its involvement. Also, the mere 90-mile gap between Cuba and the U.S. didn’t help ease these fears.

Novorossiysk and Dmitrov are two important submarines in the Russian naval fleet, each with unique features. Novorossiysk is part of the Project 636.3 Varshavyanka-class [Improved Kilo-class] submarines, while Dmitrov belongs to the older Project 877 Paltus [Kilo-class] submarines. Both are diesel-electric attack submarines but have significant differences in size, technology, and weapons.

Novorossiysk is about 73.8 meters [242 feet] long, with a beam of 9.9 meters [32 feet] and a draft of 6.2 meters [20 feet]. It displaces around 3,950 tons when submerged. The submarine uses two diesel generators and an electric motor, allowing it to reach speeds up to 20 knots underwater and 17 knots on the surface. Its operational depth is around 300 meters [984 feet] with a maximum depth of 400 meters [1,312 feet].

Dmitrov is slightly smaller, measuring 72.6 meters [238 feet] in length, with a beam of 9.9 meters [32 feet], and a draft of 6.2 meters [20 feet]. When submerged, it displaces about 3,076 tons. It uses two diesel generators and an electric motor for propulsion, allowing speeds of up to 17 knots underwater and 10 knots on the surface. It operates at depths of around 240 meters [787 feet] and can go as deep as 300 meters [984 feet].

Novorossiysk is equipped with advanced sonar, including the MGK-400EM sonar suite, enhancing its detection abilities. It also boasts modern navigation and combat systems, making it strong in anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare. The submarine carries various weapons, like 18 torpedoes and Kalibr cruise missiles, launched from six 533mm torpedo tubes. These missiles give Novorossiysk a powerful standoff attack capability against both land and sea targets.

Dmitrov, while older, still has good sensors and combat systems. It has the MGK-400 sonar suite and similar navigation to Novorossiysk. Dmitrov can carry 18 torpedoes, launched from its six 533mm torpedo tubes, but it cannot launch cruise missiles like Novorossiysk, which limits its usefulness in modern combat.

In summary, both Novorossiysk and Dmitrov are diesel-electric attack submarines. However, Novorossiysk is more modern and powerful, with better sonar, navigation, and combat systems, plus the ability to launch Kalibr cruise missiles. Dmitrov is smaller and older but still capable, with good torpedoes and reliable sonar. These differences show the evolution of Russian submarine technology and the different roles these submarines play in the navy.


Bulgarian Military

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