The Russian Navy, already one of the largest in the world, has been working to camouflage its warships from prying eyes with a range of high-tech innovations including hidden antennas and special paint jobs.
That’s according to Vladimir Pospelov, a member of the country’s Military-Industrial Commission, who also serves on the state Maritime Board. The expert told RIA Novosti in an interview published on Tuesday that Russian military shipbuilders are employing a range of tools to try to shield their ships from detection, which is of particular importance if they come under fire from targeted weapons and guided torpedoes.
“A ship is not a needle,” he said. “The capabilities of satellite and aerial reconnaissance make it possible to detect any ship.
“As soon as any signal-emitting device is turned on, it will be detected by means of electronic reconnaissance,” Pospelov added.
However, he set out a number of ways in which new vessels are taking advantage of technological developments to minimize their physical and electronic fingerprints. Discussing a new generation of stealth ships, he said that “past versions of destroyers and missile cruisers resembled a hedgehog, studded with dozens of antennas. For corvettes, we have now switched to an integrated mast, meaning that all the arrays are hidden within its shell.
“Another way to reduce the signature of surface ships,” he revealed, “is the use of composite materials and special paints and varnishes.” A number of different finishes can be applied to naval vessels and warplanes in order to absorb radar waves at a certain frequency, effectively shielding them from being picked up by enemy air defenses.
Pospelov also said that, by the 2030s, Russia should have completed work on new groups of fourth-generation nuclear submarines, as well as commissioning two modernized corvettes. Existing upgrades have already been completed to increase the number of launchers on at least one frigate, he said.
Last month, Moscow ordered its sailors to begin large-scale exercises in the Black Sea, as British warships set sail for the volatile region as part of escalating tensions between Russia and the West.
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