SSN AKULA Class (BARS TYPE 971)–silence is golden.

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SSN AKULA Class (BARS TYPE 971)–silence is golden.

Berichtdoor Tandorini » 24 dec 2008, 18:57





The Akula/Akula II, they are excellent boats and the Navy's public comparison of Akula IIs puts them at slightly quieter than the 688, slightly less quiet than the 688I and not in the same league as a Seawolf. As for the noise level of Akula II, Janes reported that the latter subs are fitted with active noise-cancellation system which the 688I does not have. You can tell which one is silenter then. There are 3 mods of Akula. The early 971, which is an early Los Angeles equivalent. The 971U, or Improved Akula, which is at least acoustically a 688I equivalent, then there is 971A, or Akula II, which according to some is quieter than the 688I.

Akula differences

How big are the differences (noise level and combat capabilities) among the Akula class boats. As I understand these submarines have been used for more than a decade now and constantly modified. It is true that Sierras were quieter than early Akulas.

There are a thousand sayings and an equal amount of estimates, guesses, knowledge and chaff.

This is my current estimate:
The basic 971 is generally equal to a Flight 1 688 at low speeds with good maintenance. Sonars are overall inferior, but the Russians compensate partially with a non-acoustic sensor suite, a heavier armament (including P-100 missiles and 65cm torps) and a countermeasures suite.

The 971U is probably quieter than a Flight 1 688 at low speeds, but noisier at anything over perhaps 10 knots. Sonars are probably comparable to the early 688.

The 971A is quieter than a 688I at low speeds, noisier at high speeds. Sonars are somewhere between Flight II and Flight III standards.

Sierras were generally comparable to Akulas. However, they dive deeper, reducing cavitation and increasing their choice of water. Also, they are somewhat lighter, which may help thrust to weight ratios somewhat, allowing a slightly lower power from the reactor for the same speed. A Sierra II is probably comparable to a 971U, but with the first Russian spherical sonar, which gives it an advantage in listening on the bow arcs.

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