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Project 885 Yasen / Graney / Granay - Severodvinsk class

With the collapse of the USSR and the loss of a significant part of the industrial potential, Russia again faced the problem of a shortage of nuclear submarines. The design of the multi-purpose nuclear submarine (ICAPL) 885 / 885M "Ash", despite all its advantages, turned out to be extremely expensive and difficult to build. In total, it is planned to build at least seven Project 885 / 885M boats, possibly as many as nine, to replace the nine aging boats of the much larger Project 949A Antey / Oscar II class. Further production would be needed to cope with the conditions of rapid obsolescence of the nuclear submarines of the third generation of projects 971, 945 / 945A available in the Russian Navy.

H I Sutton @CovertShores maintains that "Sev's are SSGNs to replace OSCAR-II, Laika replaces SSNs.... SSGN vs SSN ... distinction is increasingly meaningless in RuN terms. Similar in west. Are Virginia and Astute SSGNs....?" This new Yasen ["Ash", as in the tree] submarine design is a further derivative of the Project 971 Akula. Russian analyssts claim the Russian nuclear submarine Project 885 "Ash" had about half the price of the American Virginia class, and surpassed the US submarine in many tactical and technical indicators. The Yasen-class sub is estimated to cost approximately US$1.6 billion, while the Virginia class ships are said to cost $2.7 billion per unit.

The crew of the Russian boat is 64 sailors against 120 in the Virginia. the Russian nuclear submarine dives 150 meters deeper - 600 meters [2000 feet] instead of 450 meters [1500 feet]. At equal running speed the 885 "Ash" has greater autonomy compared to the Virginia.

Compared with the Virginia "Ash" equipped with more powerful weapons. The Russian nuclear submarine of project 885 has ten torpedo 533-650 mm caliber tubes with torpedoes "Physicist" and "Hard". On the boat there are eight vertical launchers for four missiles each, completed by "Onyx" and "Calibre" cruise missiles. The Yasen class can be outfitted with either 32 Oniks supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles or 40 Kalibr-PL anti-ship, anti-submarine and land attack cruise missiles. In total the American boat carries 12 Tomahawk-type missiles and 26 torpedoes, and four torpedo systems [the Block V boats will have a total of 40 Tomahawks]. In the long term, "Ash" will cruise sea-based missiles with a range of 5,500 kilometers, twice the range of the best modifications of the flight of the American Tomahawk.

It is believed that the noise level of the American Virginia submarines is lower than the Russian boats. In order to achieve this indicator, the American submarine uses new coating system isolated decks and new construction of the power plant. However, according to Russian experts, in comparison with the fourth-generation Russian submarines of Project 885, the noise level of the American Virginia is about the same.

The original idea of the "universal silos" was a design with a multi-task profile, making it possible to change the profile of weapons loaded to adjust to several missions. It features a significant cruise missile capability with eight vertical launch tubes for RKB-500 aft of the sail. The multipurpose Severodvinsk nuclear submarine program, being built under the 855-Yasen Program, was to carry eight launching devices with 24 P-100 Onyx high-precision stealth anti-ship cruise missiles. Subsequently it was reported that the Severodvinsk will be armed with 24 SS-N-26 Oniks missiles arranged in eight triple SM-315 launchers. [Other reports suggest it carried twenty SS-N-17, but this seemed improbable].

One sourcess suggest that the Project 885 Yasen (Granay) is just a replacement for the 949A Antei [NATO Oscar II]. This would make the Yasen an "aircraft-carrier-killer". By this account, the main difference between the earlier 949A Antei [NATO Oscar II] and Project 885 Yasen consists in the later's ability to strike both coastal and warship targets with new supersonic cruise missiles. Another account, consistent with official Russian statments, suggests that the Yasen was to be just the follow on of the 971 Schuka-B (NATO Akula), and was not designed as a replacement of Oscar-II.

The hull is made of low magnetic steel, with a spherical bow sonar. According to Western intelligence estimates, the Severodvinsk was assessed as probably being only slightly quieter than the improved Akula. It would have with expanded missions with better anti-submarine capabilities (the first Russian spherical sonar, much improved sensors of other types, data fusion techniques, etc). Trial operation of the first multi-purpose missile submarine Project 885 "Ash" - "Severodvinsk" - fully demonstrated the inherent characteristics of the creators of it, general director of St. Petersburg Maritime Engineering Bureau "Malachite", designed this submarine, Vladimir Dorofeev, said in an interview 18 March 2017 with Tass. "In general, the result of the trial operation of the ship, of course, positive characteristics, once incorporated in the ship turned into objective indicators - the number of actual firings, torpedo launches and they say that." Ash was a "fully hosted a warship" - he said.

Russian analyst Mikhail Lukanin told Radio Sputnik that the Project 885 Yasen class is impressive. Armed with cruise, antiship and anti-submarine missiles, the highly autonomous nuclear-powered multipurpose attack submarine is a force to be reckoned with. It is fast, silent and deep-diving. Thanks to its unique features, the Yasen class "came as an unpleasant surprise to the United States," Lukanin observed. "Americans are concerned that our silent subs could largely neutralize [Washington's] ballistic missile defense system.... Russia has traditionally pursued a defensive strategy. All Russian weapons serve for defensive purposes. The Americans, on the other hand, adhere to an offensive approach that is based on suppressing an adversary with their might".

The NATO's reporting name for the Yasen ["ash tree"] project is GRANAY [also seen as GRANEY]. An ash tree can be identified by its distinctive leaves and bark. Ash trees have several leaves per leaf stem and the leaves are located directly across from each other. The totally unrelated Project 877, designated the Kilo by Western intelligence, is a much smaller non-nuclear diesel-electric submarine developed in two parallel projects - the Granay for the Soviet Navy and the Warshavyanka for export. The provenance of this designation is completely obscure. In Russian, "graney" is the instrumental singular of "gran'", which means boundary, verge, brink, etc. So graney would be "by means of a boundary." Granay, a populated place in in Saint-Etienne, Rhne-Alpes, France, Europe, is also known as Grand Granay. Bounded by the districts of Tirunelveli to the north and the east, Kanyakumari was once termed as The Granay of Travancore. The narrow Graney River leads to the town of Scarriff, Ireland. The River Graney issues from Lough Graney in the barony of Tulla, and passing through Lough O'Grady, falls into Lough Derg at Scariff bay.

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Page last modified: 13-01-2020 18:53:34 ZULU