North Korea says it has added a nuclear submarine drone to its military arsenal capable of generating radioactive tsunamis, penetrate coastal waters, eliminate entire fleets and destroy ports and infrastructure. The system, dubbed the “Haeil (Tsunami in Korean) Nuclear Unmanned Underwater Vehicle”, has been in development since 2012 and would be similar to the Russian system known as Poseidon, unveiled by Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2018.
The autonomous underwater weapon known as the Poseidon, called Canyon in the United States, is essentially a nuclear-powered torpedo and the ability to carry a warhead nuclear power of up to 100 megatons, although according to other information it would be 2 megatons, still about a hundred times the destructive power of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs. It is considered a drone because it is capable of autonomous navigation or remote control, which makes it possible for it to be redirected or even stopped before reaching its objective. Technically it is one of the largest torpedoes ever built with a length of 24 meters, about twice the length of a ballistic missile and about thirty times the size of a standard torpedo.
It is estimated to have a range of at least 10,000 km, a speed between 70 and 108 knots (129 and 200 km/h) and ability to dive to a depth of a thousand meters. The Poseidon is one of the strategic weapons that Vladimir Putin unveiled in a speech in 2018. In his speech, the Russian president pointed out that the range of the torpedo would be unlimited, that it could operate at extreme depths and at speeds many times higher than that of any submarine. or other torpedoes. The official Russian news agency TASS noted in January this year that the Poseidon is the first set of “unstoppable” nuclear-capable super torpedoes.
For his part, the television presenter Dmitry Kiselyov, close to Putin, graphically pointed out that the underwater drone was capable of causing a tsunami that could drown the UK under a tidal wave of 500 meters of radioactive seawater. An apocalyptic image that does not hide one of the great advantages of the weapon, its ability to circumvent the ballistic missile systems deployed in Europe. According to experts, deploying underwater weapons creates an imbalance that allows Russia to bypass the Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System. The US satellite network is geared toward locating and tracking ballistic missiles, and has little ability to detect what is happening under the sea.
In addition, according to reports, the design of the Poseidon allows it to emit low heat and travel quietly, which also allows you to circumvent microphone systems and ships deployed to protect the territory from submarine attacks. The K-329 Belgorod nuclear submarine, which has been serving the Russian Army since July 2022, is the ship that can carry the Poseidon underwater drones. This makes it, in addition to the largest submersible in the world, also the most lethal. The Belgorod is a variant of the Oscar-II class of the Russian submarine fleet, designed for special operations.
Its incorporation into the Russian submarine fleet it occurred in July of last year coinciding with the war in Ukraine and a major military concentration in the Arctic region. Its dimensions are 178 meters in length (length), 15 meters in beam (width) and a tonnage of about 30,000 tons. It can reach a speed of 130 km/h and carry up to six of the massive Poseidon drones. It is estimated that with its deployment, the Russian Navy could have a total of 73 nuclear submersibles in the near future, more than those of the United States and China.
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