Military Review

Rescue equipment for submariners of the Russian Navy


Submariner with SSP-M equipment

The complexity and danger of the service of the submarine forces impose special requirements on systems and means of rescue. Russian submariners currently have various means of self-rescue at their disposal, and in addition, they can count on the help of the emergency rescue service. All these measures make it possible to evacuate personnel from the damaged submarine and provide them with the necessary assistance.

Self-salvation paths

First of all, the safety and survival of the crew is ensured by the Submariner's Rescue Equipment (SSR), which has been used on domestic submarines for several decades. With the help of the SSP, the submariner can leave the ship and safely rise to the surface. Depending on the means used, rescue is provided from depths of up to 200-220 m.

SSP is available in two versions. The complete set No. 1 includes the SGP-K-1 diving suit, the IDA-59M self-contained breathing apparatus, a belt with a carabiner and the PP-2 parachute system. Completion # 2 uses SGP-K-2 overalls with some differences and the IDA-59M product. The composition of the SSP is determined by the equipment of the submarine's onboard rescue equipment.

Liferaft training 2017

The SGP-K-1/2 diving suits can be used for temporary stay in compartments at pressures less than 1 MPa (10 atm.) And temperatures up to + 50 ° C, however, its main task is to ensure that the submarine leaves the so-called. wet method.

Rescue hatches (with and without air supply unit), torpedo tubes or a robust wheelhouse can be used as rescue devices for wet exit. Hatches ensure the exit of submariners one at a time, while the wheelhouse simultaneously accommodates up to 4-6 people. In all cases, the same method of application is used: submariners in the SSP occupy space in the volume that serves as a lock, after which it is filled with seawater. Further, those fleeing go outside and begin the ascent.

Free ascent is allowed. When SSP No. 1 is used, the maximum rescue depth reaches 220 m. At depths of 60-80 m, the PP-2 system is activated, which limits the rate of ascent and protects the diver from decompression sickness. Completion # 2 allows ascending from only 100 m. Submariners have at their disposal a buoy-view with a buoype for ascent. With its help it is possible to escape from a depth of 100 m. With the help of the rescue service, it is possible to exit from great depths.

Rescue equipment for submariners of the Russian Navy
Pop-up capsule of the submarine "Severodvinsk"

Several years ago, it became known about the development of new SSP-M equipment. An improved diving suit and a modern breathing apparatus are being created for him. Due to the use of modern technologies, it was possible to improve the main characteristics of the components of the equipment and, as a result, reduce the risks for the rescued submariner. It was reported that in 2018 the new SSP will enter service, and by 2020 it will be received by submariners of the Pacific fleet... Then it was planned to start re-equipping the submarine forces of other fleets.

All crew

If the damaged submarine is on the surface, evacuating the crew is not particularly difficult. There are various types of inflatable liferafts on board domestic boats. At the minimum time, they are thrown overboard and put into action, after which the personnel can go to them. Each raft has an emergency supply with all the necessary components on board. The emergency services must then ensure the boarding and provide the necessary assistance.

Collective rescue of the crew in a submerged position is performed using a pop-up rescue camera (VSK or KSV). Such equipment has been used for a long time and is available on all modern submarines of the Russian Navy. VSK is a durable non-self-propelled underwater vehicle with a multi-tiered arrangement of places to accommodate the crew, emergency supplies, rafts, etc. The camera is located inside the deckhouse / retractable railing, at the very top of the sub.

Descent of the AS-34 deep-sea vehicle from the board of the Georgy Titov vessel

To use the VSK, the personnel must carry out a short preparation procedure, after which they take places inside and undock. Due to positive buoyancy, the camera rises on its own to the surface, where you can send distress signals and make the transition to rafts or rescue vessels, as well as provide assistance to victims.

In November 2014, the Ministry of Defense showed the features of the use of VSK. The camera of the submarine K-560 "Severodvinsk" passed the tests. During this event, VSK took on board five submariners and ballast, imitating the rest of the crew. The ascent was carried out from a depth of 40 m and took approx. 10 sec. The test divers did not notice any negative phenomena.

However, the presence of the VSK does not guarantee the safety of the crew. Thus, the crew of the nuclear submarine K-141 "Kursk" during the accident could not use the camera. Submariners with K-278 "Komsomolets" were able to use the VSK, but only five people got into it. In addition, upon ascent, the pressure difference tore out the hatch, and the chamber began to draw water. One submariner was thrown out after the hatch, another was able to get out - three others, including the commander of the ship, drowned along with the VSK.

Rushing to help

The Department of Search and Rescue Operations (UPASR of the Navy) is responsible for rendering assistance to submariners in distress. It has at its disposal a mass of rescue vessels for various purposes, as well as deep-sea vehicles and complexes. Due to the use of certain means, it is possible to evacuate the crew from a sunken boat, provide assistance to submariners on the surface, tow an emergency ship, etc.

AS-34 in independent sailing

Virtually any vessel, from various boats to large specialized units, can lift victims out of the water and ensure the transition from rafts. At the same time, in recent years, special attention has been paid to the creation of specialized rescue vessels capable of providing comprehensive assistance at all stages of the operation and ensuring the operation of other rescue means.

For the evacuation of submariners from a sunken boat by "dry method", deep-sea rescue vehicles (SGA) are used. All naval fleets have at their disposal one carrier vessel with the SGA pr. 1855 Prize. The AS-26, AS-28, AS-30 and AS-34 devices are capable of diving to a depth of 1000 m, docking with the escape hatch, and take on board up to 20 people. and deliver them to the surface. Also built two newer SGA pr. 18720 "Bester" with improved characteristics and capabilities. So far, only the Northern and Pacific fleets have them.

The use of SHA can be difficult. The transfer of the carrier vessel to the accident site and preparation of the dive can take a long time. In addition, technical difficulties are possible. So, during the operation to rescue the Kursk, the Prize vehicle could not dock to the escape hatch due to its damage.

Rescue vessel "Igor Belousov"

Since 2015, the unique rescue vessel Igor Belousov, pr. 21300 Dolphin, has been serving in KTOF. He carries SGA "Bester-1" and a diving bell. A significant part of the internal volume of the vessel is occupied by the GVK-450 deep-water complex. It includes 5 pressure chambers for 120 people. With the help of its regular means, Igor Belousov can raise the crew of an emergency submarine, and then provide decompression and other medical assistance.

Unfortunately, only one vessel has been built on Project 21300 so far, which does not meet the general requirements and wishes of the Navy. The fact is that the GVK-450 complex is the result of cooperation between domestic and foreign industries. The use of imported components is no longer possible, and the development of its own analogues has not yet begun. It is not known how soon the Navy will be able to receive a new ship, project 21300.

Salvation will come

At present, the Russian Navy has a developed complex of means for rescuing submariners from damaged ships, both on the surface and from the depth. Some systems and products have been in operation for decades, while others have appeared in recent years - however, they all solve common problems and give personnel the hope of rescue from any emergency.

Control post of the GVK-450 complex on board "Igor Belousov"

At the same time, there are certain difficulties in the field of means of rescue. So, none of the known systems, as experience shows, does not guarantee one hundred percent rescue of people, and various unforeseen factors and circumstances can lead to unforeseen consequences. In addition, there are quantitative and qualitative problems. For example, the Igor Belousov vessel, with all its advantages, does not yet have sisterships, and their construction is postponed indefinitely.

However, the overall situation is conducive to optimism. New submarines with modern systems are being built, and their reliability is increasing, dramatically reducing the likelihood of accidents. At the same time, the rescue service receives promising products of various kinds that can provide the necessary assistance. The performance and potential of these tools are regularly tested during training events. It is hoped that everything will be limited only to exercises, and they will not have to be used in real accidents.
Photos used:
Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, "Tethys PRO"
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  1. The leader of the Redskins
    The leader of the Redskins 21 October 2020 06: 04
    God forbid submariners to use the kits and equipment indicated in the article only during training!
    Thanks to the author, I, as a land passenger, was interested and, importantly, understandable!
    1. The leader of the Redskins
      The leader of the Redskins 21 October 2020 07: 28
      Honestly, I still did not understand what ... a bad person you need to be to minus the wish for our submariners to always rise from the depths and return home!
  2. Gunther
    Gunther 21 October 2020 08: 30
    Quote: Author
    Several years ago, it became known about the development of new SSP-M equipment.

    Let's hope that defective managers and the Ministry of Finance will not ditch this development, which is necessary for the fleet.
  3. Pashhenko Nikolay
    Pashhenko Nikolay 21 October 2020 08: 33
    I don’t even know where the author’s optimism comes from. The boat should have its own reliable means of salvation. Wait for salvation from outside? Frankly speaking, you can not wait.
  4. Narak-zempo
    Narak-zempo 21 October 2020 08: 52
    Help will come on time.
    Checked by "Kursk".
  5. Andrei Nikolaevich
    Andrei Nikolaevich 21 October 2020 09: 00
    Good luck and trouble-free, our submarine.
  6. Operator
    Operator 21 October 2020 09: 08
    -13 qualifying.
    Protection of the submarine's crew is, first of all, the maximum reduction in its number (up to several people) with full automation of onboard devices.

    The second is the manufacture of all, without exception, internal equipment from non-combustible materials. The third is the rejection of fire hazardous emergency sources of oxygen and carbon dioxide absorbers. The fourth is the rejection of the pop-up rescue module due to its guaranteed jamming in most emergency cases. Fifth, the use of a standard one-liter personal rescue cylinder with a mouthpiece attached to the cylinder (not the horror shown in the photo).
    1. Undecim
      Undecim 21 October 2020 09: 59
      Fifth - the use of a standard personal rescue scuba diving cylinder of one liter volume with a mouthpiece attached to the cylinder
      The use of such cylinders is a direct path to the next world. Don't write about what you don't understand.
      1. Operator
        Operator 21 October 2020 10: 14
        -10 qualifying.
        Stay tuned for a diver with +100 Nitrox dives: a pony tank complete with a regulator

        1. Undecim
          Undecim 21 October 2020 10: 27
          A diver with 100+ dives should understand that he wrote nonsense.
  7. TermNachTer
    TermNachTer 21 October 2020 09: 30
    Rescue from a depth of 200 m in such a suit? I have vague doubts
  8. Operator
    Operator 21 October 2020 10: 29
    Quote: Undecim
    wrote nonsense

    1. Undecim
      Undecim 21 October 2020 12: 28
      See comment below. Can you tell the difference between a pony balloon and a mini Scorkl balloon for blondes, designed for a maximum of 10 minutes and 50 cm depth? Judging by the photo - no.
      1. Operator
        Operator 21 October 2020 14: 11
        Pony cylinders with nitrix are used for emergency ascent of divers from a depth of 45 meters (when ascending with nitrogen saturation of body tissues with a maximum decompression time) and 100 meters (when ascending without saturation with a minimum decompression time - a variant of an emergency escape from the submarine).

        The ascent time of the submarine crew from 100 to 10 meters (stop for decompression) is 1,5 minutes, the decompression time is 5 minutes, the remaining 3,5 minutes is the ascent to the surface and the reserve time.

        PS If you do not know anything about technical diving, please contact us.
        1. Undecim
          Undecim 21 October 2020 14: 52
          What makes me happy is that you will never be allowed to perform rescue operations, otherwise you would have saved up, specialist in technical diving.
          1. Operator
            Operator 21 October 2020 15: 01
            What does not make me happy - that you are "special" in everything in the world.
  9. rudolff
    rudolff 21 October 2020 10: 33
    This whole system of rescuing submariners should not be cosmetically improved, but radically revised. There are questions both to the SSP, and to the IDA, and to the construction of escape hatches, and to the VSK. The stories with Komsomolets and Kursk have clearly shown that the adopted rescue system either does not work at all or does not work properly. And VSK in the whole history has saved only one person, and even then by a miracle.
    1. KERMET
      KERMET 21 October 2020 21: 52
      Yes, I saved, despite the fact that the submariners did everything to prevent this from happening
      1. rudolff
        rudolff 21 October 2020 22: 12
        The Komsomolets crew was not ready. Neither to fight for survivability, nor to go to sea in general. Those who got into the VSK had no idea how to use it. Likewise, those who got out on deck did not know how to properly drop liferafts.
        1. KERMET
          KERMET 22 October 2020 11: 53
          The fact of the matter is that there are more questions about the preparation of the reserve crew and those who allowed them to go to sea than about the design of life-saving equipment
  10. Undecim
    Undecim 21 October 2020 12: 11
    Quote: Operator
    Stay tuned for a diver with +100 Nitrox dives: a pony tank complete with a regulator

    An example of how a "diver with 100+ dives" "hangs on his ears" due to the complete lack of relevant knowledge, but the presence of great aplomb.
    That is, the individual did not even bother to think. that the crew of the submarine does not breathe a special mixture for diving with a high oxygen content (nitrox), but ordinary air with 21% oxygen, moreover, often with a pressure exceeding 1,0 bar. That is, in each specific case, depending on the depth at which the damaged submarine is and the time the crew is under increased pressure, the corresponding decompression mode is determined, which determines how long it takes to ascend to the surface without getting decompression sickness.
    Therefore, the pony or staging cylinder must provide sufficient breathing gas for a fully controlled return to the surface, taking into account the decompression time. Therefore, such cylinders, firstly, have a capacity of 2 to 7 liters, and secondly, they are equipped with a regulator and a lung demand valve.
    And what you have in the picture is a mini-cylinder for amateur diving, designed at best for 10 minutes of swimming at a depth of 50 cm.
    Especially for 100+ Nitrox divers:
    Jumped into the water
    I didn't blow.
    In five minutes
    A lot of blood,
    Little hearing -
    This is an ear barotrauma.
    Everything hurts.
    The bones ache.
    There are nitrogen bubbles in the blood.
    More into the water
    You don't bother
    That is decompression sickness.
  11. Pavel Fedorov
    Pavel Fedorov 22 October 2020 13: 28
    In short, another tale about salvation.
    Personal rescue?
    Well, maybe let's not make you laugh?
    Do you remember Kursk?
    The boat is a floating coffin.
    Her task is to do something (like to fight) and die in unison ...
    The boat will tilt at the pier, and then it will sink right there ...
    Especially with modern Kremlin managers. Why do they need the sun, if their capital is there ??
    1. Aag
      Aag 22 October 2020 21: 11
      Quote: Pavel Fedorov
      In short, another tale about salvation.
      Personal rescue?
      Well, maybe let's not make you laugh?
      Do you remember Kursk?
      The boat is a floating coffin.
      Her task is to do something (like to fight) and die in unison ...
      The boat will tilt at the pier, and then it will sink right there ...
      Especially with modern Kremlin managers. Why do they need the sun, if their capital is there ??

      Please don't lump everything together!
      Managers - managers, so that they were empty. But! IMHO: Every military officer must be ready for self-sacrifice. to the joy of those close to you, yourself, the working people, in general.
      ... This is ideally ... In life, it happens differently, I agree. Incompetence, indifference, desire to bend, - many were destroyed ...