Article Goals and Objectives of the Russian Navy: Strategic Deterrence we considered the only task - to ensure the deployment and protection in the protected "bastions" of strategic missile submarine cruisers (SSBNs). The fulfillment of this task allows at the strategic level to ensure the security of the state from a large-scale war, including the use of nuclear weaponsthreatening the very existence of the Russian state.
At the same time, despite the ability of the strategic nuclear forces (SNF) to provide protection against a full-scale invasion and a massive nuclear strike, there are threats of local conflicts, including with powerful, technologically advanced powers, with strong armed forces, as well as the threat of a limited conflict with the participation of superpowers, which include the United States and, perhaps, China. And the use of nuclear weapons in these conflicts can bring more negative consequences than benefits.
Based on this, the country needs modern and high-tech general-purpose armed forces, one of the most important components of which is the navy.
It is obvious that our country has limited financial, production and technological capabilities. These capabilities are not only significantly inferior to the capabilities of the United States in conjunction with the NATO countries, but also the United States separately, and in some competencies we lag behind other members of the alliance.
As we said in the previous article, this means that we will not be able to achieve victory over the united fleet NATO and even the US Navy, especially when using "symmetrical" weapons and tactics.
What can we count on?
Fleet and space
First of all, let us voice one important thesis, which, in the author's opinion, will determine the appearance and capabilities of not only the Navy, but also the Air Force and Ground Forces in the medium term:
Reducing the cost of launching a payload (PN) into Earth's orbit, achieved with the help of reusable launch vehicles (LV), as well as progress in microelectronics and competencies obtained in the creation of commercial artificial Earth satellites (AES) intended for the deployment of global satellite Internet communication systems , will allow the leading powers in the next 20 (+/- 10) years to deploy in orbit such a number of military and civilian intelligence, command and communications satellites, which will ensure the observation of the entire surface of the planet in 24/365 mode.
As of March 24, 2021, the Starlink global communications system has 1383 satellites, their complexity is comparable to the complexity of radar satellites for Earth sensing
This means that any large targets, such as surface ships or mobile ground missile systems (PGRK), can be tracked by the enemy around the clock and all year round.
Combined with the ability to retarget long-range weapons in flight, large mobile targets will become as vulnerable targets as stationary targets.
At an intermediate stage, when, taking into account the constantly increasing number of reconnaissance satellites, as well as maneuvering platforms such as the X-37 and Dream Chaser Cargo System with the Shooting Star module, capable of quickly changing orbit and carrying a variety of reconnaissance means, a situation of uncertainty will arise when it will be impossible to determine whether a surface ship / naval strike group (KUG) / aircraft carrier strike group (AUG) is detected and tracked or not.
The possibilities of space reconnaissance means and their prospects are considered by the author in articles Find an aircraft carrier: space reconnaissance и Capella Space's All-Seeing Eye: Harbinger of the Satellite Intelligence Revolution.
At the same time, one should not rely on the possibility of destroying reconnaissance satellites - this is an extremely difficult and expensive task, which was discussed in the articles Достучаться до небес и Orbital Cleaners... This task can be solved only with the use of comparable, or even more resources than will be spent on the deployment of reconnaissance satellites. Conventional nuclear weapons are also likely to be ineffective, special neutron charges will be required (a lot of expensive neutron charges), and their use is guaranteed to mean the beginning of a nuclear war.
The capabilities of satellites will complement the so-called "atmospheric satellites" - stratospheric unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), which are discussed in the article Find an aircraft carrier: a view from the stratosphere.
Numerous satellites and stratospheric UAVs can completely dispel the "fog of war" over the planet's surface
There is some form of denial - the Americans did not fly to the moon, the Falcon-9 launch vehicle is unprofitable, Starlink does not exist, the Earth is flat, and so on ... However, the author has no doubts about the realism and feasibility of all the above technologies and complexes. Their influence on the format of warfare on land, on water and in the air will be colossal. If SpaseX manages to implement a fully reusable super-heavy rocket Starship in the format in which it is conceived, then the consequences of this are still difficult to imagine.
Ignoring the factor of "all-seeing space" can lead to the fact that in the construction of the armed forces strategic miscalculations will be made, which will make them irreversibly vulnerable and incapable of fighting the enemy.
What conclusion follows from the above?
A critical element of the combat capability of the armed forces of the Russian Federation in general and the Navy in particular is the ability to ensure parity in space with the leading powers in terms of intelligence, command and communication (RUS) assets.
The importance of this task is comparable to the importance of maintaining nuclear parity. So, oddly enough, but the capabilities of the Navy (as well as the Air Force and Ground Force) will be determined by the possibility of creating a reusable launch vehicle with a low cost of launching a launch vehicle into orbit and the possibility of large-scale production of inexpensive reconnaissance, control and communications satellites. And this, in turn, will require the creation of a new reliable and efficient rocket engine (most likely on a methane + oxygen fuel vapor) and industrial production of radiation-resistant electronic components.
The creation of advanced space assets of the RUS will allow the Russian Navy to make the most of the capabilities of long-range missile weapons and, in particular, to promptly destroy about half of the enemy's fleet.
Fleet on the shore
About half of the enemy's fleet is almost always "on the shore". This is due to the operational stress coefficient (KO), which characterizes how much time surface ships and submarines spend on combat duty, and how much in their home bases, performing maintenance / refueling / repair / loading weapons / rest / crew change, etc.
For most fleets of the world, on average, KOH is about 0,5 (50%), that is, half of the ships are located in their basing areas. For many countries, in particular for the Russian fleet, the KOH is much less than 0,5. In wartime or pre-war times, the COP will inevitably be increased, but this will inevitably affect its decrease in the future - equipment and crews will simply be worn out.
When they talk about the possibility of destroying SSBNs standing in the base, they mean precisely the shooting of stationary ships, for which even anti-ship missiles (ASM) are not needed, high-precision cruise missiles (CR) with a much longer range can be used.
The photo taken in 2015 shows how four Project 667BDRM SSBNs are simultaneously in the Gadzhievo base - K-51 Verkhoturye, K-84 Yekaterinburg, K-18 Karelia and K-407 Novomoskovsk, and also one SSBN K-535 "Yuri Dolgoruky" project 955
It is the surface ships and submarines of the enemy stationed at the base that should become target number 1 for the Russian Navy and Air Force.
The best means for striking NK and submarines standing in the base are nuclear submarines with cruise missiles (SSGN) of the promising project 955K, multipurpose nuclear submarines (MCSAPL) of project 855 (M) and strategic bombers Tu-160 (M).
Use of SNF aircraft in the interests of the Navy
The Tu-160 (M) strategic missile-carrying bombers belong to the Russian Air Force, not the Navy, but should be actively used in the interests of the Navy, since their role in nuclear deterrence is minimal, and it is a crime to develop their resources for bombing militants in Syria. Previously, the author considered equipping the Tu-160 (M) with missiles of the "Dagger" complex in the article Hypersonic "Dagger" on the Tu-160. Reality or fiction?. According to information from the TASS agency, obtained from a source in the military-industrial complex, this possibility is also being considered by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation..
Placing missiles of the "Dagger" complex on strategic bombers-missile carriers Tu-160 will create a long-range complex with the highest speed of reaction to threats. With the fastest approach to the target with a cruising speed of 1,5M, the total radius of destruction of the Tu-160M "Dagger" complex will be 3000-3500 km. This mode will provide a minimum response time to a threat and will allow you to act in the interests of the three fleets. The maximum time - from the moment of takeoff (excluding the preparation time of the aircraft for departure) to the moment of hitting the target at a distance of 3000-3500 km - in this mode will be approximately 2-2,5 hours
However, the placement of the "Dagger" on the Tu-160 is not critical, it may be aviation version of the complex "Caliber", and anti-ship missiles based on the KR X-101, and "Zircon". In the context of solving the problem of defeating NK and submarines in the base, the modernization of the Tu-160 (M) for the use of anti-ship missiles is not required at all, they can use the standard X-101 for this, the flight range of which, according to various estimates, varies in the range from 3000 up to 5500 kilometers.
In addition, you should not get hung up on the Tu-160 (M), both Tu-95MSM and PAK-DA can do this. Cargo aircraft equipped with equipment for dropping cruise missiles can be considered as a cheap alternative to specialized strategic missile bombers - this issue was considered in the article The evolution of the nuclear triad: prospects for the development of the aviation component of the strategic nuclear forces of the Russian Federation.
In the 08.08.08 war, Georgian boats were sunk by special forces, but, in an amicable way, cruise missiles launched from coastal aircraft of the Navy or Air Force aircraft should have done this without unnecessary risk.
Nevertheless, strategic bombers have one drawback - the enemy can potentially track their take-off from airfields and, having guessed the intentions to withdraw the ships from the base, bring the air defense (air defense) systems to increased combat readiness.
SSGN and SSNS
Despite the strengthening of the anti-submarine capabilities of our adversaries, SSGNs and ISSAPLs have a great chance to reach the missile launch range unnoticed and remain so even after the launch of the CD, provided that there are no enemy KUG or AUG, early warning aircraft (AWACS) nearby.
As we said in the previous article, Project 955K SSGNs, if created, will complicate the enemy's task of tracking SSBNs while they are simultaneously withdrawn from the base due to the similarity of acoustic signatures. But this task is not the main one for them: The main task of the Project 955K SSGN is to deliver massive anti-ship missile attacks on the enemy's AUG and KUG, as well as to deliver KR strikes against targets on enemy territory... The latter include the NKs and submarines standing in the base.
SSBN project 941 "Akula" could be upgraded as carriers of a huge number of cruise missiles on the model of the converted American SSGN "Ohio", turning them into mighty submarine "arsenal ships", but this opportunity was missed
Speaking about such an adversary as the United States, it can be assumed that it is capable of organizing a sufficiently effective anti-submarine defense (ASW) and air defense of its coast and naval bases (naval base) in particular. But, firstly, with the launching range of the missile launcher of the order of 3000 kilometers or more, their carriers can be located far enough, outside the dense PLO. Secondly, launched missile launchers can be performed using low-visibility technology, and the density of their launch will not allow destroying all of them. In addition, missile launchers can be launched along a complex route bypassing air defense zones, for example, using a flight over part of the enemy's territory, attacking his naval base "from the inside". In the case of the use of hypersonic missiles, the enemy may simply not have time to react because of their short flight time.
A hypersonic rocket 3M22 "Zircon" at a speed of 4-8M will cover a distance of 1000 kilometers in 7-14 minutes, while it does not need to search for targets with a seeker (HSS), when firing at the NK and submarines standing at the pier, their coordinates are sufficient
And finally, if such an adversary as the United States is forced to spend huge resources on the defense of its coast, then this can already be considered a bloodless victory - "They do not need the Russian coast, and they do not need the Arctic."
The same task should be met by the creation of the promising universal submarine mentioned in the previous material, the weapons compartment of which should be adapted to accommodate various weapons, including submarine ballistic missiles (SLBMs). Its increased capabilities to overcome anti-submarine lines will allow the enemy to create a threat of a sudden decapitating attack of SLBMs along a flat trajectory, forcing him to strengthen the defense of his lines.
A universal submarine capable of carrying an SLBM will force potential adversaries to pay more attention to their own defense - to the detriment of their offensive capabilities
To increase the effectiveness of the CD strike against NK and submarines in the base, as well as anti-ship missiles against the enemy's KUG and AUG on the high seas, existing and promising long-range weapons must necessarily have the ability to retarget in flight.
For example, if we launch a subsonic cruise missile from a distance of 3000 kilometers at targets detected by reconnaissance satellites, then during the flight, which is about three hours, the NK or submarine can be relocated or put out to sea. In this case, the possibility of retargeting the CD will allow it to retarget to another object, eliminating the senseless loss of expensive ammunition.
Ideally, the RC and anti-ship missiles should be able to transmit not only their coordinates, but also the optical / radar image obtained by the onboard seeker. This will allow them to be used as a disposable reconnaissance UAV-kamikaze, which was previously discussed in the article Find an Aircraft Carrier: Drive Hunt.
The ability to retarget the KR / RCC in flight, and even more so to receive data from their GOS, require the presence of a developed RUS satellite constellation, which was mentioned at the beginning of the article.
If by inflicting a massive blow on the NK and submarines of the US Navy, standing in the naval base, we can only "pat" them, then the fleets of other countries, which have a much smaller number of warships, weaker anti-submarine and air defense, the worst KO, can be inflicted such damage from which they can no longer recover.
For example, a blow to the NK and submarines of Turkey, standing in the base, can be inflicted by SSGNs from the Mediterranean Sea and Tu-160 (M) / Tu-95MSM / PAK-DA from the mainland of the Russian Federation. The ships remaining in the Black Sea can be destroyed by tactical coastal aviation. (We do not consider the intervention of the United States and NATO, we believe that the conflict was started by Turkey, and NATO will only provide it with information support).
The situation is the same with Japan. With all the power of their naval forces, they cannot have 100% KOH, and the anti-ship missile raid on the naval base cannot be repelled by any air defense. Consequently, a significant part of their fleet can be destroyed "remotely" without engaging in direct combat.
In the next article, we will consider how and how the Russian Navy can completely or partially destroy the second half of the fleet of potential adversaries.