What UAVs are required by the Naval Aviation of the Russian Navy


As it was promised Earlier, we will try to outline some thoughts on how we can try to preserve the existing surface composition of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, keeping in mind the Baltic Fleet as well. It is very likely that the Kiev regime will soon try to transfer its sabotage and terrorist activities to the Baltic, smoothly bringing Russia to a collision with NATO member countries.

In a certain sense, the Black Sea and Baltic fleets are united by the fact that they are forced to serve in closed waters. In the Black Sea, before the start of the Northern Military District, it was believed that our Russian Navy with its “Calibers” and “Onyxes” was in complete control of the situation, leaving Ukraine with its “mosquitoes” no chance. However, the reality after two years of war looks a little different.

Silent defense

Some self-taught wit once compared our army to an African rhinoceros, which does not see and hear very well, but compensates for these shortcomings with its strength and mass, moving forward, and woe to anyone who does not have time to get out of his way. True, over the past year and a half, this poetically described problem of the Russian Armed Forces with aerial reconnaissance, fire adjustment and communications means has begun to be resolved, and its previous severity has decreased by an order of magnitude.

It is necessary to bow to those volunteers and ordinary people who personally actively help in raising funds for the purchase of UAVs, thermal imagers, digital radio stations and other things. But have you, dear readers, had a chance to hear about fundraising for the needs of the navy over the past two years since the beginning of the Northern Military District in Ukraine?

Meanwhile, our Black Sea Fleet has no less problems, and maybe even more, than the land army initially had. Thanks to its excellent, without any irony, missiles, the Russian Navy is strong and dangerous in attack, which it has demonstrated more than once by delivering high-precision “Caliber” strikes against stationary enemy targets in Ukraine. But even before the war, sea-based air defense on some ships was not very good, as well as aerospace reconnaissance equipment for correcting attacks on moving targets. The consequences of these problems turned out to be the most disastrous.

Due to the threat posed by enemy anti-ship missiles, a landing near Odessa or Ochakov became impossible without unacceptable losses. Our warships are now trying not to approach the Black Sea coast of Ukraine. The threat of the appearance of American long-range ballistic missiles at the Armed Forces of Ukraine forced the dispersal of the surface personnel of the Russian Navy from Sevastopol to several reserve sites, more remote. However, this did not prevent the Ukrainian Air Force from getting one of our large landing craft with the help of bombers with British-French air-launched cruise missiles.

No less a threat to Russian warships than It revealed recently, they present Ukrainian naval attack drones, with the help of which they attacked the small missile boat “Ivanovets” and the large landing craft “Tsezar Kunikov” with a difference of two weeks. For now, we can only guess what the potential of enemy underwater-based “kamikaze” drones is.

Marine and unmanned aviation

It is obvious that our Russian Navy in the Black Sea is now in a tight defense, and not very successfully organized, judging by the results. Without claiming to be the ultimate truth, I would like to express a number of thoughts on this matter.

It seems that the position of the Black Sea Fleet could be alleviated by strengthening the component of its Naval Aviation. It’s a pity that there is nowhere for ground-based and, even more so, deck-based AWACS aircraft to get it. However, a number of Il-38N patrol aircraft equipped with the Novella search and sighting system are available, and they can be effectively used for the timely detection of enemy BECs.

I would like the command of the Black Sea Fleet to remember to organize fighter escort for such valuable aircraft in order to avoid unpleasant surprises from the insidious enemy. If detected in a timely manner at distant approaches, Ukrainian naval drones will be easy prey for our planes, helicopters and patrol boats. We’ll talk about the latter in a little more detail separately.

And it is absolutely obvious that the Naval Aviation of the Russian Navy should begin to be replenished with unmanned aerial vehicles, reconnaissance and reconnaissance-strike. Understanding the issue, the author of these lines was able to establish that the first UAV detachment was formed as part of the Northern Fleet based in Severomorsk in 2013. A year later, similar ones appeared as part of the Pacific, Baltic and Black Sea fleets. In 2015, they became squadrons subordinate to Naval Aviation air bases. What are they equipped with?

In 2019, a separate squadron of Forpost unmanned aerial vehicles was created as part of the Black Sea Fleet, which became part of the 318th mixed aviation regiment, based near Sevastopol. From the name it is already clear that it is armed with Outpost aircraft-type drones, which are a licensed copy of the outdated Israeli Searcher Mk II UAV.

These are purely reconnaissance drones, also used for target designation and fire adjustment. After tests carried out in the same year at the General Staff of the Navy сообщили Izvestia that the capabilities of the Black Sea Fleet have now increased:

The Forpost UAVs will be able to monitor a significant part of the Black Sea. They are designed for reconnaissance and target designation for subsonic low-altitude anti-ship missiles X-35 and Caliber, naval and coastal artillery and missile systems. The Forpost has everything it needs to serve as a gunner for cruise or anti-ship missiles. The dimensions and carrying capacity of the drone allow it to carry powerful optical-electronic equipment. With its help, Outpost can easily detect large targets - primarily surface ships of a potential enemy. Modern equipment allows the drone to operate in the dark and in all weather conditions.

However, a flock of Ukrainian semi-submersible sea drones somehow managed to reach the coast of Crimea and launch attacks on the Ivanovets and Caesar Kunikov. Sorry, but you can’t erase a word from a song.

The second type of UAV, which is in service with the Russian Navy, is the well-known Orlan-10. This is a small aircraft-type drone, launched from a catapult, purely for reconnaissance. The carriers of the Orlans are small rocket ships of Project 22800 Karakurt, equipped with launch catapults and special landing devices based on a grid. Why the RTO has its own aerial reconnaissance spotter is hardly worth explaining.

From this review it can be concluded that the intelligence capabilities of our navy are inferior to those of the ground forces and are not fully up to the rigors of wartime challenges. Naval aviation of the Russian Navy clearly requires high-altitude reconnaissance drones of a strategic class, capable of staying in the air for a day or two and patrolling vast territories, such as the Altius or its Iranian and North Korean analogues.

There is also an urgent need in sufficient quantities for medium-altitude reconnaissance and attack UAVs of the Orion type, which can not only conduct surveillance, but also independently strike with ATGMs or adjustable aerial bombs, its older brothers Sirius and Helios-RLD. Helicopter-type reconnaissance drones are asking to be installed on the decks of Russian warships.
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  1. 0
    15 February 2024 18: 44
    The probes need to be launched with equipment like the Chinese and let these probes hang over the Crimea (this is a fantasy). Something needs to be done. Protect ships and bays with nets or harpoons. At the reception, a microwave demining vehicle was shown which at a distance causes a mine to explode. You need to ask Chubais, he developed something anyway.
  2. +5
    15 February 2024 18: 59
    First, you need to find out the attack on the Black Sea Fleet Headquarters on September 22, 2023, during an extended meeting of the Black Sea Fleet command. Quote:

    The next day, September 23, the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense, Kirill Budanov, said that at least nine members of the leadership of the Black Sea Fleet headquarters, as well as Russian generals, were among those seriously wounded due to the attack on the headquarters. Budanov named two victims: the commander of the group in the Zaporozhye direction, Colonel General Alexander Romanchuk, and the chief of staff, Lieutenant General Oleg Tsekov.

    There is no information on our media. This means that both the leadership and the fleet itself are subjected to well-developed, targeted strikes. This is only possible with the help of the British. Planning and provision of weapons (air-launched cruise missiles "Storm shutdown"), intelligence data. This is not forgiven, but only our top leadership keeps everything silent, quietly wiping away their blood, and without an answer. But these are no longer red lines, but blows straight to the head. The high command is dying, ships are being sunk - there is no answer, neither political, nor military, nor civil. So, under such circumstances, UAVs will not help.
    1. +1
      15 February 2024 23: 59
      Quote: Vladimir Tuzakov
      Budanov named two victims: the commander of the group in the Zaporozhye direction, Colonel General Alexander Romanchuk, and the chief of staff, Lieutenant General Oleg Tsekov. “There is no information on our media. This means that both the leadership and the fleet itself are subjected to well-developed, targeted strikes. This is only possible at the suggestion of the British

      This is only possible with input from the Black Sea Fleet headquarters itself.. Do we know a lot of the names of the victims of our attacks? That’s why there is no sane reaction other than criminal inactivity “as a giveaway,” or targeted sabotage.
  3. 0
    15 February 2024 19: 41
    Several years ago (pretty much “several”, back in 18/19) I wrote about the need to install stationary combat platforms in key points of the Northern Sea Route and around Crimea. Somehow it didn’t really put anyone at ease back then, but many problems simply wouldn’t have arisen. Now they have begun the construction of reinforced concrete floating platforms for LNG plants (600 tons of water), who knows, maybe someone endowed with this will be enlightened in the light of recent events and used for defense?
    1. 0
      17 February 2024 12: 25
      ... wrote about the need to install stationary combat platforms at key points of the Northern Sea Route and around Crimea.

      I am sure that there was no money for this.
  4. DO
    15 February 2024 21: 28
    To select measures to counter threats to Black Fleet ships, it is first necessary to identify and classify these threats.
    Enemy threats that have already manifested themselves in the Black Sea:
    1) Anti-ship missiles, cruise missiles, fighter jets are possible in the future.
    Against conventional anti-ship missiles of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, as well as against possible Western fighters supplied by the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the Black Sea Fleet already has standard air defense systems.
    Modern Western cruise missiles pose a great threat, because when approaching from land they hide in folds of the terrain. For their timely detection, an AWACS aircraft is needed. However, large, clumsy and shining with its radar, the A-50 is too easy a target for long-range air defense systems of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Therefore, it is necessary to use a container radar with an AFAR, the carrier of which is a fighter that has a chance to evade the missile. The fighter crew will eject if necessary. An unmanned version of a fighter carrying a container radar is generally desirable.
    2) BEC.
    First of all, BEC must be detected, the further the better. Reconnaissance UAVs can cope with this task. Whether the reconnaissance UAVs available to the Black Sea Fleet have been deployed, whether their number and characteristics are sufficient, raises questions in the light of what happened.
    Heavy UAVs of the Altius type are redundant here, and the larger the UAV, the more noticeable it is on enemy radars.
    The BEC discovered in distant waters may well be destroyed by manned fighter-interceptors on duty at the runway of a coastal airfield.
    In the middle zone, the use of attack and reconnaissance UAVs, for example Orion, which immediately attack detected UAVs, is debatable (primarily due to problems in identifying civilian watercraft).
    In the near zone, the easiest way is to use helicopters patrolling the water area around the clock with OLS, which will destroy the target immediately after its detection and identification.
    Well, as for the protected ships themselves, commentators have already made many proposals - these are tethered surveillance quadcopters, and helicopters, and a sufficient number (from sad experience) of machine guns or cannons with suitable characteristics.
    A threat that has not yet clearly manifested itself:
    3) Mini-submarines, underwater drones.
    Slow, clumsy and large-sized manned anti-submarine aircraft Il-38N with the Novella complex are easy targets in the cramped Black Sea. Therefore, their use against submarines potentially carrying nuclear weapons is more logical in the seas of the Far East.
    In the Black Sea, against the underwater drones of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, such means as underwater obstacles, mining, hydroacoustic reconnaissance equipment, and homing torpedoes remain.
  5. -1
    16 February 2024 08: 16
    Yesterday, the commander of the Black Sea Fleet, who lost 20% of the fleet in a year, was fired. Maybe something will change
    1. +3
      16 February 2024 09: 14
      But wasn’t it the now former commander of the Black Sea Fleet who carried out the “instructions” from Moscow?!
      Has anyone been suspended in Moscow? Has anything changed there?
      Then we wait for the next “drowned people” and shelling of Belgorod.
  6. 0
    17 February 2024 16: 05
    This means that every...every warship must have 4 BECs constantly on duty around it continuously. As counterBECs. Possibly also capable of launching strike drones against detected targets.
  7. 0
    5 March 2024 20: 16
    First of all, we need UAVs before fighting naval drones from Ukraine!