Military Review

Undermining the Nord Stream. One of the versions

Undermining the Nord Stream. One of the versions

Submarine of the Navy of the USSR BS-486 project 940 ("Lenok")

On the night of September 26, 2022, in the Baltic Sea at a relatively small distance from the island of Bornholm (Denmark), as yet "unidentified persons" blew up three of the four existing lines of the Nord Stream gas pipeline.

I began my officer service as a commander of a group of aquanauts on a Soviet special submarine of project 940 (Lenok), and I am quite familiar with the technologies for performing various diving operations, including undermining underwater pipelines.

In order to get closer to the truth, let's first try to figure out what underwater technical work needs to be done and what technical means to use to carry out this event.

We know that the depth of the sea in places of explosions is from 84 to 74 meters. It is also known that the gas pipeline is laid on the bottom soil, made of large-diameter steel pipes with a steel wall thickness of about 35 millimeters, and is covered with a concrete protective lining on the outside. In order to cut it as shown on television shootings, a linear factory (not home-made) shaped charge with a capacity of just over 250 kilograms is needed, laid in a circle around the pipe.

The gas pipeline has a security zone 1 meters wide (000 meters on each side of the center line of the gas pipeline), in which anchoring and other actions that pose a potential threat to the pipeline are prohibited. The pipeline is not marked on the water surface. In order for the ship, even knowing the exact coordinates, to find it, it is necessary to perform a technical (using a hydroacoustic search station, or a remote-controlled uninhabited underwater vehicle - ROV) or diving additional search. At the same time, it is prohibited to anchor ships in the protected zone of the pipeline.

From all of the above, it follows that in order to lay a charge on the pipeline in those places where explosions have been carried out, a vessel with a deep-sea saturated diving complex on board is needed. The fact that the divers worked precisely in the mode of saturated diving is indirectly indicated to us by the corridor of depths at which the explosions were committed. A corridor of 10 meters allows divers to work without changing the mode.

In addition, the vessel must be equipped with a dynamic positioning system and sonar search equipment. That is, it must be able to find an object and hold a place above it without anchoring. It is either a military submarine rescue vessel or an offshore deep sea underwater technical work vessel.

The deep-sea diving complex of saturated diving is a pressure chamber (with all household amenities), in which, being under pressure corresponding to the depth of the forthcoming work, using an artificial gas mixture for breathing, corresponding to a given depth, people live - deep-sea divers (aquanauts). This technology of deep-sea diving descents is widespread all over the world. It allows more than an order of magnitude to increase the productivity of divers. Here, divers live and work under the pressure of the depth of work, and decompression is carried out only after the completion of the diving descent.

The duration of the diving descent by the method of saturated diving depends on the depth of work, in the general case it is 25 days. To deliver divers under water to the place of work, a diving bell is used - a special vertical pressure chamber, into which divers in diving equipment go and which, without changing pressure, delivers them to the depth for direct work. At the same time, two divers (working and safety) in diving equipment through the hatch located at the bottom of the chamber enter the aquatic environment for work, and the third one, providing, without equipment, remains in the bell to ensure the work of the first two: controls the cable-hose bundles of divers, to which the respiratory mixture, water for heating, telephone and television cables are supplied, regulates the temperature of the coolant for heating divers, and so on.

But no one has seen such vessels in the protected zone of the pipeline since the completion of its construction. And it is very difficult not to notice them with the modern total control of navigation in the Baltic.

German version. Yacht

There is a version that the installation of charges and undermining of pipelines was carried out from a yacht, by a crew of six people, of which two were divers. But this version does not withstand even light criticism. After all, "do not drop anchors" applies to yachts.

It can be assumed that the yacht had a source of electricity capable of operating a portable sonar, and she surveyed the pipeline area. And having found a pipe, she dropped a small buoy with an anchor to mark the place.

And further under the water, along the buoyrep, a diver should go to a depth of 80 meters. He should be wearing insulated diving suits, a diving compass, a hydroacoustic communication station, a diving breathing apparatus - scuba gear or a rebreather, and a huge bundle of cylinders with gas mixtures for decompression in the water during a slow exit to the surface after work.

The task that he must complete is to find the pipe, because it is not a fact that the anchor of the buoy fell to the ground in the immediate vicinity of it, and fix the trigger line on it - a cable that serves as the shortest path for the diver from the surface to the object, and also serves to supply diver from the surface of the charge elements. A buoy is fixed at the second end of the cable, since it cannot be attached to the yacht, because the yacht will stop drifting, and this will be noticed. It is very difficult to go down to the ground along the buoy and then find a pipe in these underwater twilight. But, having found the pipe, the diver must fasten the trigger line to it, which means making a dig under it with a knife and hands to secure the trigger line by circling around it.

It should be noted that the duration of the work of a diver in such equipment at a depth of 80 meters is very limited. This is, under the most favorable set of circumstances, 20–30 minutes, after which it is necessary to start a long ascent to the surface, with decompression in the water along the ascent. Decompression will take at least 6 hours. Of the tools, this diver has only a knife, therefore, for this work, he will need at least 1 hour. Therefore, the first diver will leave for decompression, having started work, he will be replaced by the second one, who also will not have time to dig under the pipe. The result of the day will be the started digging under the pipe. Then a break in diving for a day, so as not to get decompression sickness. And the buoy will remain on the surface of the water, and someone will probably become interested in it and rip it off, and next time you will have to start all over again.

In addition, there is no place to buy a factory-made shaped charge; it is made strictly according to the characteristics of the object being blown up. In addition, with this method of diving descents, one diver simply cannot fix a linear charge on a pipe with a diameter of 1,3 meters.

Thus, the German version of an allegedly pro-Ukrainian trace disappears as unreality.

American version. "Jimmy Carter"

There is also the American version, and it is more plausible, but upon closer examination, there are too many inexplicable nuances.

After all, as already mentioned, no one has seen a specialized ship-carrier of a deep-sea diving complex for saturated diving in the area. And for divers working in light diving equipment without the use of deep-sea diving complexes and weighing themselves with a bunch of cylinders with breathing mixtures with various inert gases in order to undergo decompression under water in shortened modes, which are very complex and still very long, work on undermining pipelines is very dangerous and extremely difficult to implement.

And here the answer to the question, “from which carrier the divers worked,” gives article hydronaut, historian of hydronautics Vladimir Ashik in the newspaper "Izvestia" dated March 14, 2023 "Traces at the bottom", in which Vladimir Mikhailovich talks about the US nuclear sabotage submarine "Jimmy Carter".

As I already wrote, I started my officer service on about the same, but Soviet submarine. Like the Jimmy Carter, she also had a deep-sea saturation diving complex, but was diesel-electric, which was largely inferior to the Jimmy Carter. Although the main purpose of this boat was to assist the crews of sunken submarines, she could do the job of covert mining of underwater pipelines very easily. There were two such boats in the Navy: one for the Pacific Fleet, the second for the Northern Fleet. But the Pacific in 2000 was sold to China, and the North Sea in 2005 was cut into metal.

The technology for installing charges on pipelines like the Nord Stream for divers of such boats is not very complicated. The boat, having received the task, introduces its divers into a saturation diving mode corresponding to the planned depth of work. Covertly, being in a submerged position, a sonar search station finds a pipe and, in the case of Jimmy Carter, it stands on special "legs" in parallel, and in the case of "Lenk" it is even easier. He stands on the stern and bow special anchors (guides) above the pipeline, perpendicular to it, the exit from the diving complex in this case will be just above the pipe, which will greatly facilitate the delivery to the pipe of the property and equipment necessary for the work of the diver.

A special submarine does not need a diving bell. Here, divers, who are in a pressure chamber under pressure from depth, put on diving equipment, enter a special compartment of the pressure chamber, it is called the receiving and output compartment, equalize the pressure in this compartment with the outboard one and open the diving shaft - a vertical pipe with a diameter of 800 millimeters, and go overboard through it . Then, after 30 minutes, the soil under the pipe is washed away with a hydromonitor, they spend about an hour hanging a linear shaped charge around the circumference of the pipe, after 20 minutes they connect an acoustic explosive machine with a slowdown of the executive signal and go into the boat.

And the boat moves to the next pipe, where the event is repeated.

Our president, referring to surveys conducted by Gazprom, told the media that at a distance of 30 kilometers from the explosion site towards Denmark, a certain beacon was found on the ground near the pipeline. Considering the Jesuit planning methodology practiced in the American leadership, it is quite possible that next to this “beacon”, under the pipe, a concentrated charge of kilograms of 500 power is buried. And the "beacon" is an acoustic explosive machine, patiently waiting for a signal. For deep-sea divers of the sabotage nuclear submarine Jimmy Carter, such work is not difficult to perform.

By the way, the "legs" of "Jimmy Carter", in the places of his work, should leave specific traces on the bottom soil by which he can be identified.
Photos used:
1. personal archive. 2. -
41 comment

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  1. Vladimir_2U
    Vladimir_2U 24 March 2023 05: 02
    Yes, Amer's ears were immediately visible behind the explosions, and now the "legs" have also been added ...
    1. Civil
      Civil 24 March 2023 07: 25
      Well, there were so many articles about the great construction and breakthrough of Nord Stream-2. The end result is an infamous ending. Who will answer? Who will return the money?
      1. Akuzenka
        Akuzenka 24 March 2023 08: 27
        Who will answer? Who will return the money?
        No one will answer unless forced to answer. And no one will return the money if they are not forced to return. But I highly doubt they will. Everyone already knows everything, but the "chewing gum" about how it was done only for the masses.
  2. parusnik
    parusnik 24 March 2023 05: 26
    "We built, built, and finally, we built!" (c) "Abdul, set fire to it!" (c)
  3. Ross xnumx
    Ross xnumx 24 March 2023 05: 49
    We do not need to study the legs of Jimmy Carter, but issue ultimatums to restore the system or begin to act according to a given scheme.
    Stop begging and begging ... It's time to move on to adequate solutions ...
    There are a lot of objects in different seas and oceans, the disabling of which will be painful for any terrorist state.
    As for the investigation, NOBODY can prevent Russia from conducting it. 2-3 ships approached the accident site and check ... And let only one "bad guy" blather something against or dare to threaten ... Why did the IVS with the LPB leave nuclear weapons to us?
    1. AdAstra
      AdAstra 25 March 2023 13: 48
      Let's fantasize. We set an ultimatum and did not fulfill it, what will we do next?
  4. tlauicol
    tlauicol 24 March 2023 06: 08
    Submarines pass these straits on the surface. Too small. This would be known
    1. tralflot1832
      tralflot1832 24 March 2023 09: 09
      You can also get to the Baltic Sea through the Kiel Canal.
      1. tlauicol
        tlauicol 24 March 2023 09: 30
        Quote: tralflot1832
        You can also get to the Baltic Sea through the Kiel Canal.

        Can. And also on the surface. The list of last year's Baltops ships is known.
        I am for the version of working with spacecraft and divers
    2. nedgen
      nedgen 24 March 2023 20: 39
      Quote: Tlauicol
      Submarines pass these straits on the surface. Too small. This would be known

      In your opinion, the place of detonation at 75-80m is shallow for a submarine? Even a nuclear submarine is enough 25m to get to the periscope depth
      1. tlauicol
        tlauicol 25 March 2023 08: 20
        Quote: nedgen
        Quote: Tlauicol
        Submarines pass these straits on the surface. Too small. This would be known

        In your opinion, the place of detonation at 75-80m is shallow for a submarine? Even a nuclear submarine is enough 25m to get to the periscope depth

        In my opinion, the submarine will not pass the straits unnoticed
        1. water
          25 March 2023 17: 22
          It must be assumed that an American special submarine, when performing a combat mission, will always pass unnoticed by NATO-controlled straits.
          1. tlauicol
            tlauicol 25 March 2023 17: 39
            Quote: watermark
            It must be assumed that an American special submarine, when performing a combat mission, will always pass unnoticed by NATO-controlled straits.

            How so?
            1. water
              25 March 2023 18: 16
              The usual fairway. At the same time, all tracking systems documenting information will be disabled for prevention. And will be included after its passage. The relevant NATO services will take comprehensive measures for this.
              It’s not noticeable for our boats to slip through there, but they simply don’t want to notice the American one.
              1. tlauicol
                tlauicol 26 March 2023 04: 58
                We will have to turn off all cameras in cars, (there are bridges everywhere), disperse people from the banks, curtain windows tightly, stop shipping, fishing, drones and private aviation. And much more
                And why, if it is possible to deliver more and easier on a ship?
  5. ycuce234-san
    ycuce234-san 24 March 2023 06: 17
    But no one has seen such vessels in the protected zone of the pipeline since the completion of its construction. And it is very difficult not to notice them with the modern total control of navigation in the Baltic.

    Most likely, some kind of marine robots were used, which simply do not need it - no special vessels, no pressure chambers, no working hours, no good weather - and they could be controlled from a satellite and they could move far on their own.
    Modern robots do not yet have a snorkel with a diesel engine - but sooner or later someone will come up with this simple idea - and then they will be able to work directly from the port and not from the ship.
    1. Vladimir80
      Vladimir80 24 March 2023 09: 20
      I’ll support you, I also don’t really trust versions with divers, the 21st century is in the yard ... Cameron looked at the Titanic at 2 kilometers deep ... equipping a “robot” with a manipulator that allows you to install explosives is not a problem for a technologically developed country (USA, British, Norway, etc.)
      1. Yuriy53
        Yuriy53 24 March 2023 10: 18
        Cameron looked at the Titanic at a depth of 2 kilometers.
        Guys, you in kind think what you write,
        Cameron looked at the Titanic while sitting with a cup of coffee in a rather large vessel, which stood almost above the Titanic, and due to its great depth, had an automatic geo-positioning system.
        1. Vladimir80
          Vladimir80 24 March 2023 13: 16

          everything seemed to be the same
        2. tralflot1832
          tralflot1832 24 March 2023 13: 25
          And this ship was Russian, Mstislav Keldysh. Cameron rented it quite often.
  6. Lech from Android.
    Lech from Android. 24 March 2023 06: 22
    The author did not say anything about the Norwegian combat swimmers ...
    I recommend to go through the information world for awarding orders and medals to this category of military personnel ... including the Americans from the moment the SP-1 and SP-2 were blown up. smile
    An indirect sign of their participation in this terrorist attack.
  7. Roman Bubnov
    Roman Bubnov 24 March 2023 07: 39
    In general, it is a completely plausible version, but the fact that Amer or Norwegian or even British divers could do this is already particular. And all of the above have special equipment, and boats are available and not necessarily nuclear, the main thing is the presence of a pressure chamber on board and equipment for underwater work
  8. expert
    expert 24 March 2023 12: 19
    Finally, calmly, intelligibly presented information (versions).
    Thanks to the author, I read it with great interest. hi
  9. 16112014nk
    16112014nk 24 March 2023 12: 31
    Quote: Tlauicol
    Submarines pass these straits on the surface. Too small. This would be known

    Minimum depth of the Danish Straits:
    Oresund - 38 m.
    Kattegat - 124 m.
    Skagerrak - 809 m.
    If you can’t go underwater, but really want to, then “exceptional is possible.
    And Scholz was informed about this sabotage.
    1. agond
      agond 24 March 2023 12: 53
      The author points out the need to use a factory-made linear shaped charge weighing 250 kg (in the form of a ring on a pipe), or maybe everything was simpler, an ordinary charge weighing, for example, 1 ton was blown up next to the pipe (without any digging under the pipe), by the way, schemes were published a pipe bent to one side, that is, as if from a lateral impact.
      1. ZAV69
        ZAV69 24 March 2023 17: 55
        Yes, in general, they wrote about depth charges with an accuracy of almost half a meter. I threw this and that ....
    2. tlauicol
      tlauicol 24 March 2023 18: 36
      Eressun depth 7-20m. For the rest, it is also incorrect at times. The Skagerrak belongs to the North Sea. Kattegat rests on small puddles
      1. water
        25 March 2023 17: 31
        Quote: agond
        The author points out the need to use a factory-made linear shaped charge weighing 250 kg (in the form of a ring on a pipe), or maybe everything was simpler, an ordinary charge weighing, for example, 1 ton was blown up next to the pipe (without any digging under the pipe), by the way, schemes were published a pipe bent to one side, that is, as if from a lateral impact.

        The pipe has a straight cut. This happens only when cutting steel with a well-calculated cumulative. charge. And the pipe turned and bent under the influence of jet thrust created by the gas flowing out of it under a pressure of 200 kg / cm2.
        The use of a charge with a capacity of 1 ton and laid on a pipe can only bend it. Painfully the wall of the pipe is thick.
    3. dump22
      dump22 28 March 2023 02: 24
      Oresund - 38 m.

      Sorry, but that's not true.

      Great Russian Encyclopedia 2004–2017

      Danish Straits (Baltic Straits), a system of straits between the Scandinavian and Jutland peninsulas. Connects the Baltic and North Seas. Includes the straits of the Small Belt (length 130 km, width from 0,5 to 41 km, the smallest depth in the fairway 11,9 m), the Great Belt (120 km, from 11 to 78 km, 11,3 m), Øresund (Sund) (102 km, from 3,4 to 49 km, 8 m), Kattegat (270 km, from 60 to 160 km, 17 m) and Skagerrak (225 km, from 60 to 155 km, 53 m).
  10. Mikhail3
    Mikhail3 24 March 2023 13: 20
    As far as I understand, the largest area of ​​the seabed is covered with a layer of bottom sediments. Simply due to the fact that dust brought by the wind from the surface and the remains of organisms that live in the upper water layers are constantly falling down. Somewhere this layer is larger, somewhere less, but it is present almost entirely. Bare rocks are possible only where there are strong currents or vertical slopes.
    The technology of laying pipelines under water, as well as laying bottom cables for communication and power supply, provides for cutting through sediments with a pipe or cable so that the object being laid drowns in sediments and is thus protected by them. To get to the pipe, it is necessary to erode the deposits, spending huge power and having specific equipment.
    In the article about deposits, there is not a word at all. Are they not in the Baltic? Or is it easy to find an area open for some reason? The first version of the explosion was that the explosives were placed under insulation on the pipe-laying vessel. This version seems to me personally the most adequate. Or not?
    Can someone comment professionally?
    1. water
      25 March 2023 17: 49
      The pipe lays along its laying route in different ways - depending on the level of calculated threats. In these places, it is laid directly on bottom sediments; under the weight of its weight, it has sunk into them by about 0,3 meters. Accordingly, in order to dig under the pipe, you need to work with a hydraulic monitor.
      And it is not so easy to lay explosives under the pipe insulation, and it is pointless. It is not so easy because the insulation is applied at the factory, and only the joints are insulated on the pipelayer and this process is mostly automatic with a lot of control. And the charge around the pipe with a thickness of 8 centimeters is not enough to undermine it.
      1. Mikhail3
        Mikhail3 27 March 2023 18: 38
        The level of threats was initially high. The risk of pipe explosions was mentioned at the laying stage. Putting a charge in a joint is no worse than between joints. You can also take a chainsaw, cut a ring around the pipe lying on the pipelayer rack, lay 200 kilograms of explosives (it all depends on the width of the ring, and there are few restrictions on this), and then wrap the explosives over branded insulation prepared in advance. Pour in quick setting sealant and seal. A team of specialists work for two hours. It is only necessary that the change of the pipelayer looks in the other direction, and this is not difficult to organize. Explosives, of course, will be wrinkled on laying rollers, but this will not affect its fighting qualities.
    2. Alexey Alekseev_5
      Alexey Alekseev_5 26 March 2023 20: 27
      Here I thought with my short mind and came to the conclusion. The pipe was blown up from the inside. Even at the stage of welding, explosives were planted inside. Therefore, they began to put hydrobuoys nearby. Norway, flying by, only activated these buoys .. At the right moment, it crashed.
  11. sergej_84
    sergej_84 24 March 2023 14: 23
    And here the answer to the question “from what carrier did the divers work” is given by an article by hydronaut, historian of hydronautics Vladimir Ashik in the Izvestia newspaper dated March 14, 2023 “Traces at the bottom”, in which Vladimir Mikhailovich talks about the US nuclear sabotage submarine “ Jimmy Carter."

    After this paragraph, you can not read the article, since it is clear that the author, positioning himself as a former submariner, does not know the issue at all.
    USS JIMMY CARTER is essentially a Seawolf-class submarine extended by 30 meters. Her draft is 11 meters. The depth of the Darss Sill, which determines the size of ships passing through the Danish Straits, is 18 meters. A submarine of this size in a submerged position cannot pass through the Danish Straits.
    1. Mikhail3
      Mikhail3 24 March 2023 21: 38
      Quote: sergej_84
      completely unaware of the issue.

      Maybe he was a political worker on a submarine)
  12. cpls22
    cpls22 24 March 2023 15: 36
    As far as I remember, there was a long gap between the explosions - two on the night of September 26, and one in the evening of that day. This is seismological data.
    As for the traces of the "legs" - such an assumption is very controversial - as a result of the explosion, everything should have been demolished there.
    For some reason, no one even considers the version with the participation of the British, as if a taboo has been imposed ..
  13. 75 Sergey
    75 Sergey 24 March 2023 17: 31
    Somehow the author is directly trying to convince that this submarine is straight through the NLP article.
    Of course, the technical details are interesting to me, but the main thing is who did it, and then how.
    And the United States has more than enough motivation
    1. water
      25 March 2023 18: 23
      The author presented a version based on the necessary set of actually existing forces and means for the unconditional fulfillment of the task.
  14. Alexey Alekseev_5
    Alexey Alekseev_5 26 March 2023 20: 20
    I am tormented by vague suspicions. But could this explosive have been installed in the process of welding the pipe. Trust our olegars with the last thing. Miller could have known .. For a small bribe. What kind of dog did they drop the buoys ... If they didn’t know the places of the bookmarks in advance. take for beats
  15. stankow
    stankow 27 March 2023 11: 19
    The most competent article since the beginning of the year on VO! I'm staying for two more months. wink
  16. dump22
    dump22 28 March 2023 02: 19
    Absolutely unrealistic! Is the author really a sailor?!

    The US submarine "Jimmy Carter" is a huge colossus with a total displacement of 12 tons and a length of 138 meters. Her draft in the surface position is 13 meters.
    She simply will not be able to "climb" unnoticed into the Baltic Sea, but she must first pass through the Danish straits. And the depth of the fairway of the Great Belt Strait (the deepest of the three) is no more than 20m, you won’t pass it under water!