MOSCOW, the Russian Federation (BulgarianMilitary.com) – Yesterday (9th January), a source engaged in the Russia’s defence industry revealed the plans of the Russian Navy to acquire bathyscaphes, which to be used in special operations, learned BulgarianMilitary.com.
According to the statement of the unnamed source, cited yesterday by the state-run media TASS, the Russian Navy intends to buy six transparent bathyscaphes for special underwater operations, which to become part of Russia’s Northern, Pacific and Black Sea Fleets, with each fleet to acquire at least two bathyscaphes.
The information says that, by an order from the Russia’s gas company Gazprom, the Saint Petersburg-based Malakhit Design Bureau will be responsible for the development of the manned deep-water vehicle that to be used in the base case to inspect and troubleshoot underwater pipelines. The Main Directorate of Deep-Sea Research of the Russian Defence Ministry is also interested in the bathyscaphes, according to the source, and it will consider the vehicle to be provided to its special forces as a tool used in performing special submarine operations.
The development of the bathyscaphe, which will carry out tasks in the Northern, the Pacific, and the Black Sea fleets, will cost more than 1 bln rubles ($15 mln). It is envisaged the activities performed by using the vehicle to start within this year.
According to the source in the Russian defence industry, the bathyscaphe that will be equipped with wide range of manipulators and sensors will feature the capability to operate at depths down to 2.5 km. The vehicle will be developed to accommodate 3 crew members. It will have a sphere-like form and a transparent body that will be made of titanium and acryl. The bathyscaphe will be capable to support continuous operations during 24 hours at the least, without interruption. It can be carried by any civilian or naval vessel, the source concludes.
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