American silent sea wolf tracks the tests of a new Russian submarine
WARSAW, (BM) – The nuclear submarine USS Seawolf, Seawolf type, arrived near the Tromso base in Norway on August 21, 2020, officially to give the crew a rest, learned BulgarianMilitary.com citing Defence24. On this occasion, the Americans explained why a strike submarine of this class operates in the Atlantic, despite its permanent base over the Pacific.
Read more: Top 5 best submarines in the world
As it turns out, USS Seawolf is now subordinate to the 6th Fleet, under the command of the 8th Submarine Group 8 and the commander of the 69th Task Force 69. Officially, the presence of this nuclear unit is to increase the possibilities of submarine warfare for US naval forces in Europe.
“The relocation of the USS Seawolf from Bangor, Washington to the US 6th Fleet demonstrates the global reach and commitment of the Underwater Force to provide a permanent and covert submarine around the world to carry out our unique missions with unparalleled readiness. Our submarine soldiers are the best in the world at underwater operations and are equipped with unmatched abilities designed to strengthen our navy and multiply the effectiveness of the Joint Forces in competition and conflict” Vice Admiral Daryl Caudle – Commander of the US submarines said.
The placement of one of the three Seawolfs built in the 6th “European” Fleet may indeed be surprising. It is a ship which, due to her combat capabilities and stealth, was considered the best in its class in the world at the time of construction.
Introduced into service in 1997, it no longer arouses such admiration when it comes to weapon systems, if only because there is no vertical launch launcher for the Tomahawks – like the currently built Virginia nuclear submarines. Still, the armament of the eight 660 mm bow torpedo tubes, 50 torpedoes and rockets, is impressive.
In addition, the excellent grades of stealth have not changed. It is still believed that they may be the most silent submarines in the world. And perhaps this is exactly why one of the Seawolfs suddenly started operating in the North Atlantic.
It is a good starting point to track and work out the newest Russian nuclear submarine “Kazan”, project 885M, type “Yasen-M”, which is just completing state research based on the Russian Northern Fleet and is to be put into service there in 2020.
Its staff is not yet trained enough to be able to compete underwater with the crew of an American submarine seasoned in operational missions. Additionally, the American unit moves faster under water than its Russian counterpart, which makes this kind of task even easier.
Taking advantage of this, the Americans may try to supplement their base of acoustic signatures with a new type of ship, which is very different from the prototype of the project 885 – “Severodvinsk” (the construction of which began 16 years earlier than the “Kazan”), which was already put into service.
Acting pragmatically, the Americans may also want to “get to know” the newest French nuclear-powered submarine type Barracuda, which has just started a shipbuilding trial. This is of course an allied unit, but its data should also be in the resources of the US Navy database. Seawolf ships are ideal for similar operations. Even in spite of such possibilities, the Americans had to stop the program of building these units, at the very beginning.
“The arrival of Seawolf complements our already solid submarine warfare capabilities and testifies to our continued commitment to maritime safety and deterrence throughout the region.” Rear Admiral Anthony Carullo – Commander of the 8th Submarine Group said.
The history of Seawolf-class submarines is very similar to that of the futuristic Zumwalt-class missile destroyers. Despite the fact that in both cases it was planned to introduce about thirty such units, not found anywhere else, in the end it ended with the construction of three ships of each type. The technical solutions used on these ships turned out to be too expensive and it was finally necessary to find a cheaper and less sophisticated solution.
In the case of the Seawolf type submarines, it ended with the introduction of two units of this type in addition to USS Seawolf: USS Connecticut (SSN 22) and USS Jimmy Carter (SSN 23).
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