Russia to Create New Submarine Crew Rescue System

Rubric: Russia, Industry

The Russian defense ministry in the coming spring will launch a tender for the R&D project to design a new submariners salvage system, the two well-informed insiders told Mil.Press Today.

According to the one of them, the future R&D project is related to the mounting of decompression chambers on the available rescue ships and other vessels not equipped for decompression operations.

Interior of the RBK-2200 divers’ decompression chamber

The system will be an addition to the presently operable rescue ships of such classes as Igor Belousov and Alagez having the deep-sea diving systems, said the source. As for him, that project can be implemented much faster than the industry would cope with creation of a Russian deep-sea diving system and building of the second Project 21300 salvage ship.

Another top-ranking official from the Russian defense industry specified that one of these ships would become a Project 141 lifting/mooring ship like, say, KIL-164 operated by the Northern Fleet.

As for him, the said R&D project is based on the Russian industry’s offer presented at the International Maritime Defense Show in 2017. What was shown at the exhibition is the module system designed for assistance and salvage of submarine crews. The project will help to supply rescue ships and other vessels with decompression chambers. Equipped with such a system, the ships will conduct decompression over escaped submariners and rescuers.
In case of successful tests, the system will be especially useful at the Northern Fleet that still has no facilities to save people at 80 meters or deeper, Igor Britanov, an ex-commander of K-219 nuclear sub told Mil.Press Today.
One should consider the ways of evacuation from a damaged sub, stressed the expert. Before getting into the decompression chamber, the people must be evacuated out of the hull, he explained.

Britanov added that a decompression chamber could be put on every vessel, even on a small tug. "But it is essential to modernize our submersibles that even with damaged hull or coaming platform, the submariners could be saved", he concluded.