Military Review

American expert proposes to use UAVs to combat drifting mines

American expert proposes to use UAVs to combat drifting mines

Dr. Scott Savitz, Senior Engineer at the RAND Corporation, which is a strategic research center for the US government, its military and related organizations, spoke about the dangers of drifting mines and the difficulty of dealing with them in an article on the RAND website.

Unlike anchored mines, where their fixed location can be identified and marked, Savitz said, the directional movement of drifting mines depends on ocean currents and therefore their position is changeable.

It is extremely difficult for ships to counter drifting mines because most mine countermeasures are designed to counter stationary minefields, Savitz said. The traditional way of dealing with drifting mines involves sailors on watch, scanning the waters around the ship. Often just visually. When they detect a nearby mine, the ship can turn or use a water cannon to push it away, or attempt to sink or detonate it with a shot. However, it is difficult to detect a dark, semi-submerged object - especially at night, in foggy conditions or in murky waters. Moreover, if the developers of the mine were smart, they adjusted its buoyancy so that it was completely submerged below the surface, making it even more difficult to detect, the expert notes.

According to the doctor, the basic protection against drifting mines today is the same as it was more than a century ago - the crews try to detect potential drifting mines in their immediate vicinity using sailors with binoculars or various sensors, then try to shoot at the mines from the available weapons or avoid them. As an additional tactic, bow rails were sometimes attached to ships so that drifting mines detonated at a distance from the hull, but this, according to the expert, worsens the hydrodynamics of the ship.

As Savitz writes in his article, there is also the risk of a high level of false alarms: fragments can be mistaken for mines, and repeated false alarms can eventually lead to a lull in vigilance.

Weapons aimed at drifting mines must also be able to fire at correct horizontal and vertical angles, which can be difficult to achieve, especially if multiple mines are found. Given these circumstances, the problem of drifting mines is difficult to solve, said Savets.

According to the expert, one effective way to deal with drifting mines is to use unmanned aerial vehicles to detect and classify these objects in the water.

According to him, drones could scan the water space within a radius of several hundred meters around the ship, sending signals in case of detection of suspicious objects. On board such UAVs, various sensors can be installed, including those that are capable of scanning underwater space to a depth of 2-3 meters. The same UAVs could be used to destroy drifting mines, while confirming that they are.

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  1. credo
    credo 2 December 2022 13: 49
    The idea is good, but misses such nuances as sailing during a storm and in ice.
    1. rocket757
      rocket757 2 December 2022 14: 06
      Quote: credo
      nuances like sailing in a storm and in ice.

      In the ice, they themselves explode, baling on the ice ... during a storm, difficult, in all respects.
  2. rocket757
    rocket757 2 December 2022 13: 52
    American expert proposes to use UAVs to combat drifting mines
    The question is ... where can drifting mines come from ???
    1. rotmistr60
      rotmistr60 2 December 2022 14: 00
      The question is ... where can drifting mines come from ???
      This is for Zelensky, he did a lot of things in the Black Sea. In addition, strange as it may seem, anchor mines remained after MV 2, which are torn from anchor during a storm.
    2. kamakama
      kamakama 2 December 2022 14: 01
      The cables break from the storm, from dilapidation, manufacturing defects. Or they screwed up with buoyancy and did not hold the anchor. There are quite a few of these
      1. rocket757
        rocket757 2 December 2022 14: 04
        Who can list the cases of setting anchor mines after the Second World War ???
        Zelebobus does not count, a clinical case, if you look closely.
        1. kamakama
          kamakama 2 December 2022 14: 12
          What the Turks caught at the entrance to the Bosphorus is quite enough to organize a loot sawing company under the auspices of the UN, as with the mine clearance of Yugoslavia. And there are no other interests and cannot be
        2. Shket53
          Shket53 2 December 2022 15: 07
          For Rocket 757 .... try to google the Arab-Israeli wars .... the Israelis tried to lock our (USSR) Mediterranean Squadron in the Egyptian port of Alexandria with mines ... Regards
          1. rocket757
            rocket757 2 December 2022 15: 31
            Well, yes, I remembered that it was there, something like that.
            You could say it's an exceptional case...
  3. your1970
    your1970 2 December 2022 14: 02
    What kind of kindergarten expert ..
    "if smart enough people came up with a mine" ....
  4. Two
    Two 2 December 2022 14: 11
    hi What only Svidomo stupidity does not give rise to! They have already taken care of drifting mines ...
  5. Boniface
    Boniface 2 December 2022 14: 20
    Various sensors can be installed on board such UAVs, including those that are capable of scanning underwater space to a depth of 2-3 meters. The same UAVs could be used to destroy drifting mines, while confirming that they are.

    laughing Well, let's tell me now a fairy tale about it!
    I haven't removed the noodles from my ears for a long time!

    In addition to the optical range and the use of magnetometric equipment (I will not write about the radioactive trace or detection by the CS, setting up the field or the RGAB barrier), an underwater object cannot be detected "on the fly" (from the air)!

    All this in addition to optics, it requires a lot of energy - which the UAV cannot afford!

    But the conditional transparency of water in the Black Sea is relatively high. In the open sea it is 10-18 m in winter and spring, 15-25 m in summer and 15-18 m in autumn. In the coastal zone, conditional transparency decreases in places to 5 m, and in the areas of river mouths throughout the year it does not exceed 4 m (transparency is determined by a white disk with a diameter of 30 cm)
    So the above quote is just an advertising move!

    BUT, such "good intentions" have an obscene continuation, such as obtaining from international organizations the right to monitor "supposedly mines" - allows you to conduct reconnaissance of the coast of the Russian Federation with impunity!

    P.S. the mine in the illustration is chic, anchored with galvanic fuses like our UKSM
  6. Egor53
    Egor53 2 December 2022 16: 06
    "As Savitz writes in his article, there is also a risk of a high level of false alarms: fragments can be mistaken for mines,"

    This Savitz is simply illiterate. He has steel fragments floating in the water. Well, a purely American expert.
    1. Egor53
      Egor53 2 December 2022 16: 07
      From my post, the moderator blotted out the word with ... fool. But the word is purely literary, and in no way obscene.
    2. Eule
      Eule 2 December 2022 20: 19
      The anchor mines of most countries during the Second World War were made very reliable, the galvanic impact fuse is generally a masterpiece - a glass sealed test tube with acid and around reagents that give current when the lead case is bent and the glass breaks. This device is almost eternal, in order for the mine to fail, the body, which is quite thick, must rust through.
      So the mines of the Second World War can theoretically float away from the place of installation and be dangerous even now.
      Quote: Egor53
      fragments float in water

      Such a translator. Obviously, floating wreckage and debris were meant, which indeed will create a lot of false alarms, sailors will be forced to shoot at it, or the ship will evade a suspicious object ..
  7. Fangaro
    Fangaro 3 December 2022 00: 16
    If we exclude the version that there is a mine alarm along the entire route, then isn’t simple bullet shooting at a distance of 80-120 meters with a grid of 0,5-0,8 meters cheaper?