The modern Soviet Navy as of the early 2050s operates a vast fleet of modern, highly-advanced submarines. Although the USSR's electronics technologies are in some ways inferior to their NATO equivalents, the Soviets' designs also incorporate a number of advanced features which the West is either unaware of or unable to replicate.
Electroreactive Hydrostatic FluidEdit
The major advanced component of Soviet submarine designs is an electroreactive hydrostatic fluid which the ships use for their ballast rather than water. This fluid changes its viscosity and density under the influence of an electrical charge in direct proportion to the amount of electricity it is subjected to - a property known as the 'Winslow Effect'. This allows Soviet submarines to alter their depth without having to take on external water, and the fluid becomes more resistant to pressure as more electricity is applied to increase the sub's depth.The other primary advanced feature is the construction of the hull. The exterior hull is composed almost entirely of carbon nanofibers in the form of long interwoven strands or tubes, giving the boats an organic, whale-like appearance - as though they were made out of black artificial muscles. The exact composition is a variety of different carbon constructs, including a layer of interlocking buckminsterfullerene (or 'bucky-ball') constructs: cage-like structures of interlinked carbon atoms resembling soccerballs. Not only does this make for an incredibly resistant exterior, but it is also quite flexible - able to contract and flex and absorb enormous amounts of pressure. It also permits the ship to change its depth rapidly without risk of damage, as the hull is much more pliable than one made out of simple metal.
Revolyutsiya-class Submarine (NATO Reporting Name: Tyranus)Edit
The Revolyutsiya-class Ballistare the backbones of the Soviet Navy's vast submarine fleet. They are massive boats, considerably larger even than the old Akula-class Submarines (NATO Reporting Name: Typhoon). They have a surfaced displacement of approximately 55,000 metric tonnes, roughly equivalent to the U.S.'s first generation Forrestal-class Supercarriers.
Each of these boats is 237 meters long - of similar dimensions to an old-fashioned battleship. Each has a main battery of 24 VLS (Vertical Launching System) cells capable of deploying any of the Soviets' most modern SLBMs (Sub-launched Ballistic Missiles). This number of launchers is proportionately lower, for the size of the vessel, compared to older designs. However, each cell is a cold-launch revolver mechanism employing a rotating drum that can rapidly deploy three missiles. The missiles are 'cold-launched' (i.e. deployed from their tubes without igniting their engines) using magnetic acceleration technology, permitting the arsenal to be deployed from extreme depths.
Additional armament comes in the form of banks of smaller launch cells for the Soviets' newest generation of all-purpose modular medium-sized missiles - which can operate as missiles, torpedoes or a combination of both (i.e. multi-stage delivery sequence). They are configurable as offensive or "point-defense" torpedoes (i.e. can intercept incoming torpedoes or missiles and detonate in close proximity), as SAMs, Anti-ship Missiles or surface-attack missiles. Rounding out the compliment are eight torpedo tubes, all located in the bow, which can also be used for launching the all-purpose missiles.
Revolyutsiya-class boats have a high degree of automation - although not as much as their NATO counterparts - and thus have relatively small crews for their size: approximately 200 personnel. They carry sufficient supplies as standard to remain submerged without resupply for about a year. Their highly-advanced atmosphere systems draw what little oxygen cannot be recycled from sea water and, in contrast to most Soviet designs, there is ample interior room to accomodate the crew.
Energy is provided by a pair of compact fusion reactors. In this regard, Soviet technology is superior to its western equivalent. Despite the vessels' immense size and staggering power requirements, their powerplants are quite small. Motion is accomplished through four magnetohydrodynamic "caterpillar drives", which electrify water and magnetically "pull" it through the length of the vessel to provide propulsion. The technology by which the Soviets reduce the 'signature' of these propulsion mechanisms - curbing the easily-detectable gases and noise - is not well understood. The energy consumption of these thrusters is also immense, and the technology has never been properly replicated by NATO. However, they are extremely fast as well as less noisy than conventional propellers, but also produce considerable amounts of 'wake' when operating at higher speeds and thus can only really be used to full effect when the possibility of detection is not a concern. For truly 'silent' running, the Revolyutsiya-class submarines also have more conventional pumpjets. These cannot develop anywhere near the same acceleration as the magnetic drives, but produce no detectable signature apart from disturbances in the water.