HUSKY: Russia's Next Generation Attack Submarine
Russia has formally begun work on its next generation HUSKY Class (Хаски) attack submarine (SSN). Like other recent classes of attack submarines it is being developed by the Malachite design Bureau in St. Petersburg in the Baltic. It will likely serve in the Northern and Pacific fleets.
The HUSKY Class nuclear powered attack submarine (SSN) will supersede the Project 971 AKULA Class SSN from the 2030s. By that time the AKULA design will have been in service for about 50 years. It is also viewed as a cheaper alternative to the newer Project 885 YASEN Class SSGN which has been in very slow development for the past 40 years with the second boat (Project 885M YASEN-M) only launched on the 31st March 2017.
YASEN Class SSGN
The most credible images come from the Malachite Design Bureau although the actual design has not been established. They show a submarine resembling the AKULA Class but with X-form aft planes and a longer and more blended sail. In fact the hull looks essentially similar size and shape to the AKULA. The lengthened sail appears to be extended further forward relative to the AKULA, rather than behind. This leaves room for a 3 or 6 cell Vertical Launch System (VLS) behind the sail. It is probable that each cell will carry multiple Kalibr land-attack cruise missiles.
Malachite Design Bureau model - Click for high resolution:
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In a break from the YASEN which features a spherical bow sonar array like US Navy boats, the model of the HUSKY has the torpedo tubes in the bow pointing directly forward with the sonar below it. The sonar dome appears smaller than the AKULA, pointing to the use of a more modern conformal array. Long flank arrays are also shown.
Note that it does not have a pump jet (propulsor). Although some Malachite designs have shrouded propellers (‘kort nozzles’), none have been built with a pump jet. Currently the Rubin design bureau appears to prefer pump jets and Malachite prefers more conventional screw-back props.
Other images - confirmed not HUSKY
Although credible and linked to Malachite, the above model is unconfirmed as the HUSKY. Other speculative images found on Russian sites show a sleeker boat with spherical sonar array in the nose (judging by the shape of the sonar dome), individually housed cruise missile vertical launch tubes behind it (like on later Los Angeles and early Virginia Class US Navy SSNs), and pump jet propulsion. This image is confirmed to be unrelated:
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