Russia/United States

Russia’s Poseidon unmanned underwater system could autonomously avoid U.S., NATO defenses

Russia’s new nuclear-powered Poseidon unmanned undersea vehicle (UUV) system will be able to autonomously avoid enemy defenses on its stealthy way to targets, according to a report by TASS.

The oceanic multipurpose system is designed to skirt U.S. and NATO undersea detection networks while delivering conventional or even nuclear weapons to targets.

“On its way to a target, Poseidon will be able to avoid and overcome any antisubmarine barriers and other enemy defense systems due to the fully automated operation system,” a Russian defense source told the state-owned news agency.

The source added that the UUV’s operational depth will exceed 1 km and that “new technical solutions will ensure a maximum speed of 200 km/hr.”

“Altogether, the intellectual and performance characteristics of the vehicle will make it invulnerable and secure a guaranteed target destruction,” he noted further.

TASS noted further that the Poseidon, a system designed for many missions, will also include a special purpose nuclear submarine and unmanned underwater vehicles.

The source repeated that “the vehicle from the system is intended not just for strategic tasks, but for destruction, for example, of enemy carrier groups.”

The multi-purpose system Poseidon will include a special-purpose nuclear submarine and unmanned underwater vehicles on board. The source reiterated that “the vehicle from the system is intended not just for strategic tasks, but for destruction, for example, of enemy carrier groups.”

TASS said it could not independently verify the source’s information.

Still, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Saturday that a key testing stage for Poseidon was completed.

In December, a defense industry official told TASS that testing of the UUV’s nuclear power system was taking place as part of sea trials. The official said the nuclear reactor was mounted on the hull of the operating vehicle for testing.

In March 2018 during his State of the State Address, Putin said that the Poseidon systems will be equipped with conventional and nuclear payloads and will be capable of destroying an enemy’s carrier groups, ports, and other infrastructure.

Also known as “Status 6” and by the NATO code name Kanyon, Russian state TV has said that it may be able to deliver a thermonuclear cobalt bomb of up to 100 megatons against enemy naval ports and coastal cities.

The U.S. Nuclear Posture Review included information about the Poseidon, noting that Moscow is in the process of developing a “new intercontinental, nuclear-armed, nuclear-powered, undersea autonomous torpedo.”

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