The Russian nuclear torpedo Poseidon: how dangerous is it? In Greek mythology, Poseidon was not just the god of the sea. As one of the most moody, ill-tempered and greedy Olympians, he was known to be vengeful when insulted. and was therefore considered the bringer of earthquakes and storms.
It’s somewhat fitting that the Kremlin named one of its new underwater weapons for the Greek god. The Status-6 Poseidon (NATO reporting name Kanyon) was one of six strategic platforms first announced by Russian President Vladimir Putin in a March 2018 speech. It is a Autonomous, nuclear-powered, nuclear-armed unmanned underwater vehicle that was developed by the Rubin Design Bureau.
The weapon’s capabilities have been widely touted by Russia, and earlier this month a popular state TV presenter even warned that Moscow could use the weapon to “wipe Britain off the map “, triggering a nuclear tsunami in retaliation for supporting Ukraine. Dimitry Kiselyov, who appears on a Sunday evening primetime news program on Channel One, has suggested the Poseidon nuclear-powered underwater drone could be used to drown the whole of the UK in a tidal wave of radioactive sea water 500 meters.
Francis Scarr (@francis_scarr), who monitors Russian media, tweeted: “And another nuclear threat to the UK from Dmitry Kiselyov of Russian state television: he says the nuclear underwater drone His country’s Poseidon could cause a tsunami that would “plunge the British Isles into the depths of the sea” and turn them into a “radioactive wasteland” (complete with submarines). »
Some have wondered if the Poseidon could create a real “nuclear tsunami”, but it is believed that it could still cause significant damage to coastal regions.
And another nuclear threat to the UK from Dmitry Kiselyov of Russian state television:
He says his country’s Poseidon nuclear submarine drone could cause a tsunami that would ‘plunge the British Isles into the depths of the sea’ and turn them into a ‘radioactive wasteland’ (complete with submarines) pic.twitter.com/usElgqHeIG
—Francis Scarr (@francis_scarr) May 1, 2022
“It’s a torpedo that has an extremely long range, that can travel at high speeds and then packs that nuclear punch,” David Hambling, a tech journalist who’s written a book on drones, told EuroNews. earlier this month.
“We know that from a lot of work that was redone in the crazy Cold War era to do this thing and create tsunamis with nuclear weapons,” Hambling said. “It turns out that you need a lot of energy to do that – even more than you can get from a nuclear explosion,” he explained, noting that earthquakes were successful. much better at causing tsunamis.
“If it were moved into a harbor and exploded very close to the coast, it would certainly be capable of destroying a town,” Hambling continued. “But it probably wouldn’t do much more damage than that, and it certainly wouldn’t do as much damage as a large nuclear explosion.”
Even though the Poseidon doesn’t quite have the capability to devastate the British Isles, the US Navy sees it as a potentially serious threat.
This week, Admin. John Aquilino, commander of the US Indo-Pacific Command, revealed to House lawmakers that the drone torpedo could be deployed via a new special-purpose submarine dubbed the Belgorod. The new ship could be capable of carrying six Poseidon drones.
Pentagon reports confirmed the existence of the unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) in 2016.
The Poseidon can carry a nuclear warhead with a blast yield of two megatons (MT), and it can reach underwater speeds of 108 knots, significantly faster than traditional torpedoes. More worryingly, the weapons platform is capable of destroying enemy infrastructure, Carrier Strike Groups (CSGs) and other targets. The drones, along with other nuclear-powered submarines, which serve as weapon carriers, are part of Russia’s so-called multi-purpose ocean system.
While this Poseidon may not have the devastating power of its Greek namesake, it should still pose a serious threat to the United States Navy and coastal cities.
Today’s editor for 1945, Peter Suciu is a Michigan writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites. He writes regularly on military hardware and is the author of several books on military headgear, including A gallery of military hairstyles, which is available on Amazon.com. Peter is also a Contributing author for Forbes.