Skip to comments.Russia's New 90R1 Sub-Killing Rocket Will Challenge NATO's Underwater Supremacy
Posted on 07/02/2017 5:06:42 AM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
Splav, a Tula, Russia-based company specializing in multiple rocket launcher systems for land and naval applications, has unveiled a new guided projectile for the RPK-8 Zapad ('West') anti-submarine rocket launcher system. Independent Russian military analyst Vladimir Tuchkov explains the ins and outs of the upgraded rocket.
The new rocket, designated the 90R1, is being featured at the St. Petersburg International Maritime Defense Show, which wraps up Sunday. Earlier this week, Splav's press office confirmed that the projectile had already been put into production, and is starting to enter service aboard Russian Navy ships.
Splav also showed off another system, the Magnesit-MN, at the defense show. That rocket, also fired by the RPK-8, features hydro-acoustic elements providing surface ships with protection against homing torpedoes.
Commenting on the capabilities the new rockets will provide the Russian Navy, independent military analyst and Svobodnaya Pressa contributor Vladimir Tuchkov wrote that it's important to note, first of all, that they are wedded the RPK-8, an anti-submarine warfare system with a long and proud history. "The RPK-8 is a relatively new antisubmarine weapons system, adopted in 1991," the expert recalled. "The system was a deep modernization of Smerch-2, developed three decades earlier. The effectiveness of Smerch-2 as a means of anti-submarine warfare was not very high. It was used mainly to repel enemy torpedo attacks, since it was equipped not with self-guided torpedoes, but depth charge bombs. Smerch-2 was created by the well-known Moscow Institute of Heat Engineering, which would subsequently go on to develop the Topol mobile land-based ICBM carrier."
CC BY-SA 4.0 / HUNINI / RBU-6000
The RBU-6000 anti-submarine rocket launcher
The Splav Scientific Production Concern adopted from Smerch-2 its twelve 212mm launch barrels to create the RBU-6000 anti-submarine rocket launcher. That system featured a new, remotely directed fire control system, and more importantly, rocket projectiles instead of depth charge bombs. The upgrade did not lead to a loss of functionality, however, and both the RBU-6000 and its RPK-8 upgrade are capable of launching Smerch-2's RGB-60 depth charge bomb rounds.
The RPK-8's 90R and its 90R1 upgrade's rockets consist of two parts: the rocket itself, plus a separating gravitational diving projectile.
Tuchkov explains: "The rocket is aimed at its target (vessel or torpedo) using information about its location received from the ship's sonar station. After splashdown, the gravitational projectile separates and, with the aid of an acoustic homing head, finds its target and directs itself toward it. The 90R has a contact fuse." The 90R1, meanwhile, features an inductive noncontact fuse what goes off when the projectile reaches a certain predetermined distance from its target, thus further improving its efficiency.
According to the expert, the 90R and 90R1 guided rounds increase the ASW system's effectiveness 8-10 times compared to its Smerch-2 predecessor, "whose bombs were launched, figuratively speaking, by blind luck." The 90R has a range between 600 m and 4.3 km, and a depth of up to one km. The range of its acoustic homing head is 130 m. The 90R1 is believed to feature improved range, although these have yet to be revealed in open sources. In any case, Tuchkov noted that "it can be assumed that designers did not increase its depth characteristics, since 1,000 m is beyond the limits of any NATO submarine or torpedo."
The analyst writes: "The 90R has advantages over traditional torpedoes in use against submarines. Because its gravitational projectiles lack an engine, they can move without being tracked by enemy sonar. They can be detected with the help of active sonar, but this mode of operation by an enemy vessel gives away its location even further. Moreover, it doesn't make much sense anyway: As a rule, major underwater targets are targeted by volleys of twelve rounds at once, and due to the reflection of the sonar waves from all twelve projectiles, a complex interference pattern is obtained, making it impossible to accurately determine the position of attacking warheads."
The RPK-8 has a response time is 15 seconds, with a single-salvo kill probability of 0.8. A single 90R projectile weighs 112.5 kg, including its 67 kg gravitational projectile, and 19.5 kg warhead.
The same missile casing is used on the Magnesit-MN. That system is tasked with creating false targets for acoustic-guided enemy torpedoes. It has the same 4.3 km range, and weighs 115 kg. Its acoustics systems were developed by the St. Petersburg-based Akvamarin Corporation.
Tuchkov writes: "After splashdown, the projectile sinks to a depth of 25 meters, and produces interference for a period of eight minutes, enough time to counter an enemy torpedo attack. The Magnesit-MN is capable of operating in two modes as a generator of interference for guided torpedos, and as an imitator of acoustic signals typical for surface ships. In the first case, enemy torpedoes are disoriented; in the second, they rush to a false target i.e., to the Magnesit-MN."
Furthermore, the analyst explained that the Magnesit-MN's interference-generating systems can be used without the missile shell, dropped into the water by helicopter, for example. Ultimately, Tuchkov emphasized that at their core, the RPK-8 and its 90R, 90R1 and Magnesit-MN projectiles are a ship defense system designed for close-quarters combat.
"However, offensive weapons designed to destroy subs at great distances also exist, and can be based on a variety of platforms, including ships, subs, and aircraft," the analyst added. Among them is the 91R1 Kalibr, launched from a submerged position from depths of up to 150 m.
"The rocket is fired from a standard 533 mm torpedo tube. Its exits the water using a solid propellant accelerator. Then the main engine is turned on. The missile is guarded to its target using an inertial guidance system. In its anti-submarine missile capacity, its payload is carried in a mini-torpedo. When the missile reaches the point specified in its flight program, the torpedo disconnects and parachutes down to sea level, turns on its engine and begins its search for the target with the aid of sonar."
The 91R1 has a maximum flight range of 50 km, and a speed of 700 m/s (top-notch in this class of weapon). Prelaunch preparation time is 10 seconds. One salvo can launch four missiles. The homing sonar is capable of detecting targets at distances up to 2 km. For comparison, Tuchkov noted that the equivalent US anti-submarine missile is the Lockheed Martin RUM-139 VLA, which entered into service in 1996. Installed aboard surface ships, that missile has a range of 28 km, a flight speed of 330 m/s, and uses inertial guidance. The Mk-46 torpedo is its standard warhead introduced into the Navy in 1964 and upgraded five times since.
"However, all of these upgrades did not bring it up to par with the APR-3 Orel ('Eagle') torpedo used in the Russian 91R1," the analyst wrote. "The maximum speeds are incommensurable 65 vs. 45 knots. Maximum depth is too 800 vs 450 m. The Orel also has a higher range. All of this is predetermined by the fact that the 91P1 has a starting weight of 2,100 kg, while that of the RUM-139 VLA is 640 kg."
Doesn’t matter, we spend 5 times as much as Russia on our military, therefore our weapons are superior.
At least that is the claim of the Neocons, many of whom post here and are just dying to start a war with Russia.
We’ve had ASROCs like this for decades. We didn’t fire them from “Gatling gun” launchers, but best I can tell from the article, the capabilities are similar.
I wonder if the Russian version works.
NO WAR WITH RUSSIA!
No, it will not. They will have to find them first, and they will not do that either.
You should have stayed there is things were so great.
Your royaltynAss: Please go back to Russia! We don’t want you here and take your adopted kids with you.
Wait until the Dems find you...
Just kidding - I’ve actually heard a lot of good things about Russia, from people I know who have been there. Very safe, very nice people, and quite inexpensive. And incredible history.
LOL, you smoked out a couple of neocons. Nice job!
The technology both for detection and destruction keeps improving. Always wondered how surface ships can hope to remain undetected in the era of satellites. Each ship due to its machinery emits a distinct electro-magnetic resonant signal which can be detected from space. Once a technologically sophisticated enemy knows where they are, can you protect them indefinitely?
Soros is selling lies from Ukraine and McCain is reselling them here.
There are competing pipeline plans for Syria and Trump just claimed we would dominate world energy. I don't blame the Euros for preferring us to Putin as an energy supplier but is war the only answer they can ever come up with? All they have is a hammer it seems.
War with Russia would be fun though! Hey China and Iran will be backing them..and hmm, on our side will be Israel and er, maybe Poland and a few other postage stamp sized euro countries. I don't expect Canada, UK or France to be with us and even if they were, that they would be much help.
I just bought a new stand up paddleboard and cut my hours at work for the summer. Me and my pups are going to spend all the time we can on the crystal clear lakes here in northern Michigan this summer. I don't believe for one minute that we can survive the insanity of Iran and China when they neocons finally get their war with Russia. Live now is my new motto.
My first thought as well, but this system is not just a torpedo on a rocket. It also has an anti-torpedo variant that provides several minutes of what is termed ‘interference’ in the article. That isn’t something I’m aware an asroc ever provided. Only anti-toro stuff I knew of were sound generators.
satellites: in a real war the first target ...
Serbia, like Syria, had long been a "younger brother" country to Russia. It's the Orthodox Christian thing, which btw, Soros declared to be a medieval faith that should be wiped off the planet.
This time Russia won't back down. Mark my words. And enjoy your summer.
No kidding. This is NOT the world of 20 years ago, when the Russians were a basket case and we were on top of the world. This is the Russia of TODAY, where they have spent close to 20 Years MODERNIZING their military, as this article shows, and hundreds of other articles on hundreds of other new weapons systems. I doubt we’re matching 10% of what they’re deploying. Last weekend (or maybe a bit before) when we shot down the Syrian plane, it took us 2 SHOTS. The first missile was MISSED because it tricked by the upgraded Russian flares. Again, this was a Syrian plane and it took 2 shots. We didn’t know that the Russians upgraded their flares, making our ‘smart’ missiles much dumber. 20 years ago, easy kill, this time, we had to get closer, with a second type of missile.
If the Neocons want WW3, the least they can do is allow OUR MILITARY to be upgraded first, so we have some chance of at least putting up a reasonable fight.
Russia is our natural ally against islam.
We defeated Nazism together...
“This time Russia won’t back down. Mark my words. And enjoy your summer.”
I agree - Russia is not about to back down to anyone, and why should they. They’ve had the field to themselves for decades, thanks to our NEOCON types, who thought that cutting the defense budget somehow makes a strong military.
...and that’s not fair. I’ve been to Northern Michigan...much, much, nicer than Texas in the summer, for sure!
The knee jerk jerks jerked!
“Fish on” is apropos.
Russia is also our natural ally against the globalist NWO plot. Unfortunately, we seem to be working with the globalists and against the Russians.