Why should NATO be afraid of Russia’s Yasen-M class nuclear submarines?

The Russian Defense Ministry said on September 16 that the Yasen-M class nuclear submarine launched a missile in the harsh Arctic environment, a move that took place within the framework of military exercises aimed at controlling Check military readiness in this area.

The live-fire exercise, using Granit and Oniks anti-ship missiles, was conducted in the area around the Chukotka Peninsula, in northeast Russia.

According to a statement by the Russian Defense Ministry, the exercise involved a large number of nuclear-powered submarines, including the Novosibirsk submarine of the Yasen-M class.

The submarine moved under the ice before emerging in the Chukotka Sea and launching missiles.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the Novosibirsk and other submarines successfully aimed at simulated enemy warships from a distance of more than 400 km.

The test was part of the Umka-2022 Arctic exercises, jointly conducted by the Russian military and the Russian Geographical Association (RGO).

The commander of the Russian Navy, Admiral Nikolay Yevmenov, directed the exercise from the reconnaissance ship Marshal Krylov.

Russian defense officials have come to test how the weapons systems work in Arctic conditions. It is known that the Russian shipyard Sevmash launched the Novosibirsk nuclear submarine, the first of which was mass-produced under Project 885M Yasen-M in 2019.

Yasen-M is the latest generation of multi-purpose nuclear submarines, considered one of the most powerful ships of the Russian military.

This vessel is 120m long, has a displacement of 13,800 tons, and is capable of operating at a depth of 520 m. The ship moves underwater at a speed of 31 knots with a crew of 64 people. In terms of weapons, each Yasen-M class submarine is equipped with 8 vertical launch tubes with 32 P-800 Oniks anti-ship missiles or 40 3M-54 Kalibr cruise missiles, and 533 mm torpedo tubes.

The above weapons allow Yasen-M class submarines to deal with the entire fleet of enemy warships alone. In addition, they can still be equipped with Rk-55 Grannat nuclear missiles with a range of over 2,500km. Each of these missiles carries a warhead with an explosive yield of up to 200kt. In addition, although it has not been made public, the Yasen-M submarine is said to be able to carry the Zircon hypersonic anti-ship missile that Russia is developing, which can be fired from the Oniks or Kalibr launch tubes.

The ship is also capable of deploying unmanned torpedoes carrying Poseidon nuclear warheads, capable of wiping out any near-shore bases. Apparently, this is a mobile arsenal of Russian oceanic weapons enough to destroy any city within its range. Nuclear ballistic missile submarines are considered a steel punch in the oceans of the great powers. However, at present, they are only of a deterrent nature. The use of these weapons in modern warfare is very rare. In fact, the recent wars are all small conflicts and conventional wars using conventional weapons, where the attack cruise missiles are crowned.

The US is a leader in equipping cruise missiles for nuclear attack submarines. Immediately after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, realizing that it was not necessary to maintain a large number of Ohio-class nuclear ballistic missile submarines, the United States modified some of these ships to switch to missiles Tomahawk cruise. The nuclear missile launcher has been modified by the US to carry seven Tomahawk cruise missiles. Realizing the effectiveness of this combat method, Russia also immediately launched the Yasen-M class nuclear attack submarines equipped with Kalibr cruise missiles. According to military experts, Russia’s Yasen-M class submarine is one of the world’s leading attack submarines and a worthy rival to the US’ Ohio-class Tomahawk missile submarine.

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