According to Vladimir Yankov, Rear Admiral retired and ex-director of the Diving Training Center in Obninsk, military application of the Dialog hydroacoustic modems seems controversial.
"There’s hydroacoustics named passive, to put simply, sound-locating. And there’s another type, an active one, where a sonar emits signals into space, and it can be located", explained Yankov. "As we see, the project implies active components, so such equipment is by no means covert. And this fact is absolutely unacceptable for divers whose top-of-mind concern is to stay invisible", concluded the expert.
However, the "underwater Internet" may become extremely useful in search-and-rescue operations, says Sergey Kravtsov, a top-qualification diver and a military instructor.
"The advantages are clear and obvious: promptness and online data processing. We lacked such capability before, as there were only hydroacoustic communication systems. They operated non-reliably and depended much on halocline and temperature, even blackouts happened. Definitely, the new system offers far more opportunities", shared the expert.
Nikolai Skrylev, engineer at Morskaya Geodeziya specializing in underwater works, said the innovation was not pioneering.
"German manufacturers (EvoLogics – editor’s remark) do sell acoustic underwater modems with data transmission rate of 62 kbps. Their modems designed for offshore projects are sold worldwide", he says.
Russian-made predecessors of the Dialog modem provided underwater data transmission rate of 3-10 kbps. Abroad, except the aforementioned EvoLogics, similar projects were developed by American L-3 Communications Holdings, Norwegian Kongsberg, British Sonardyne, etc.