Product "Marichka" on the slipway, view from the stern
In recent months, the Kiev regime has been actively trying to develop the direction of unmanned maritime attack vessels. Boats and underwater vehicles with warheads capable of attacking certain targets are being developed, demonstrated and even used. Not long ago they showed another example of this class - the Marichka underwater vehicle. At the moment, this is the largest Ukrainian unmanned submarine, and high hopes are pinned on it.
The existence of the Marichka project became known several weeks ago. Its developer is the AMMO Ukraine organization, which positions itself as a charitable foundation. Previously, she was involved in collecting money and purchasing various equipment for armed groups, and now she is trying her hand at creating equipment. How exactly it was possible to change the field of activity in such a way is not specified.
At the end of August, the development organization published several promotional videos talking about Marichka. They demonstrated a three-dimensional model of this device, indicated its capabilities, etc. In addition, they showed footage of sea trials. The lens captured the launch of the device into the water using a crane, some movements through the water, etc. A few days later a new video from the tests appeared. Overall, it didn't show anything new.
It is curious that in computer animation the underwater vehicle is shown from different angles and in its entirety, while in live filming not all details are shown, and key units are even censored. In particular, the developers did not show the real propulsion system of the Marichka. In addition, unlike graphic materials, the actual internal architecture of the device is not demonstrated.
It is reported that a new type of unmanned vehicle is being tested in one of the remaining ports of Ukraine. How long they will last and when they should end is not specified. At the same time, AMMO Ukraine claims that in the near future “Marichka” will begin to be used for its intended purpose.
With the help of this product they are going to attack Russian targets on the shores of the Black Sea. It is assumed that the ability to move underwater will help the device hide from surveillance systems, as well as bypass barriers and other means of protection. In general, as always, the Ukrainian side is showing great optimism - even excessive for this situation.
Submarine in miniature
The development organization showed the appearance of the product, revealed its possible architecture, and also named some technical features and characteristics. However, other data about the Marichka project is not yet available. The available information allows us to create an overall picture and find the strengths and weaknesses of the new Ukrainian project.
The “Marichka” product is actually a small-sized submarine. The length of the apparatus reaches or exceeds 6 m, the diameter is approx. 1 m. Displacement unknown. At the same time, the weight of the structure allows transportation on a semi-trailer with a towing vehicle.
A simple cylindrical body with a hemispherical head fairing and a conical stern on which the propulsion unit is placed is used. There are two pairs of horizontal rudders on the sides of the hull, and four stabilizer planes at the stern.
The promotional materials contain an interesting image that may show the structure of the device. In the figure, the submarine is shown without the plating of the upper half of the hull. The combat load is placed in the volumes between the frames. In this case, the lower half of the body obviously accommodates the equipment and components necessary for movement.
Demonstration of scale
Apparently, “Marichka” is completely electric. In this case, a significant part of the body is occupied by batteries of significant capacity. The propeller in the form of a propeller or water jet is driven by an electric motor. The speed characteristics of the product are not given, while the range is indicated at 1000 km. The duration of the voyage in this case can reach tens of hours. Working depths are unknown.
It is reported that the device is controlled only by autopilot. Navigation is carried out using GPS satellite signals. Accordingly, in its current form, the submarine can only execute the loaded program and attack only stationary targets at previously known coordinates. Means and capabilities for remote control, additional reconnaissance of targets, etc. none. Perhaps, in the course of further development, the submarine will receive a new set of equipment with expanded capabilities.
Almost half of the internal volume of the hull is allocated for placement of the warhead. It can accommodate hundreds of kilograms of explosives and a fuse. In this case, the submarine becomes disposable and dies when the charge explodes.
At the moment, the cost of one “Marichka” product is approx. 430 thousand US dollars. How the price may change depending on certain circumstances is unknown. Thus, the launch of mass production can reduce it, but dependence on imported components or loss of production capacity will lead to the opposite effect. Moreover, under certain circumstances, the production of submarines may not be possible, regardless of investment in it.
The developers of “Marichka” directly talk about their desire to use such products against Russian targets in the Black Sea. In this regard, it is necessary to evaluate the new Ukrainian unmanned vehicle and determine the degree of its danger.
As presented, this product has important features that, if used correctly, can become an advantage. First of all, these are high performance characteristics, namely the cruising range, which gives quite a wide range of possibilities. The design in the form of a submarine is of great importance: such a device, unlike unmanned boats, is capable of moving secretly. In addition, the cylindrical body, while performing all other functions, can accommodate a larger warhead.
An autonomous control system with satellite navigation, in theory, provides effective control of the vessel and can increase the accuracy of hitting the target. In this case, the control system apparently does not need to constantly maintain communication with the operator. As a result, it does not unmask itself with radiation.
At the same time, “Marichka” is not without its shortcomings, and it can be combated, and fundamentally new means are not required for this. Thus, when moving, the submarine, despite the use of electrical systems, creates a certain noise and other disturbances. They can be identified by staff naval detection systems with subsequent transfer of target designation to fire weapons.
Mesh barriers remain an effective defense against underwater threats. The Ukrainian apparatus will not have enough energy to break through them, and autonomous electronics will not be able to identify such an obstacle in advance and correctly respond to it. Failure to act outside of the intended program can lead to other problems. In particular, it is unclear how the device will behave when signals from navigation satellites are suppressed.
It is unlikely that “Marichka” is distinguished by high stability and survivability. Judging by the materials shown, even individual destructive elements or a shock wave can destroy the integrity of the housing with the subsequent entry of water and the destruction of electrical and electronic components. Detonation of the warhead is also possible. In all cases, the task execution stops immediately.
It should be recalled that the Russian army responded to attacks by unmanned boats by discovering and destroying their assembly sites, storage bases and launch positions. Obviously, this situation will repeat itself with the Marichka product, and a considerable proportion of the devices will be destroyed on the shore.
Thus, Ukraine is again trying to get some new weapon, which will help her fight the Russian army and navy. After numerous failures on the ground and in the air, the Kiev regime is mastering the naval theater. They even create new types of weapons and equipment for him. Another example of this kind was the unmanned kamikaze submarine “Marichka”.
This product is currently being tested, but its creators are already talking about high potential and future effective use. However, the Russian fleet already has all the means to protect against surface or underwater strike systems. In addition, the strengths and weaknesses of such a device are already clear, and the necessary measures are being taken.
It is quite possible that in the near future the Marichka project will leave the testing stage, and such products will try to attack our targets. By this time, the existing defenses will be supplemented and strengthened, which is why the enemy should not expect outstanding results. Like the vast majority of already existing strike systems in Ukraine, such devices will be methodically destroyed.