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New spy-sub operates in northern waters

New spy-sub operates in northern waters 11.06.2009
Russia's top-secret special purpose submarine, B-90 Sarov, is reportedly operating in northern waters from the Northern Fleets bases on the Kola Peninsula.

The first details about the brand new spy-sub were revealed in 2007 when a city official in the city of Sarov posted detailed information about the sub's existence on the city's own website. That info was removed, but too late to stop the info from being spread on other websites, like the UK based Telegraph.

Afterwards, both the Russian navy and the defence ministry denied the existence of the new submarine, only named by its Project number 20120.

Then again, nearly two years after the embarrassing information leak, new information again appears in Russian media. At the very end of a recently published article by RIA Novosti, information about the top-secret submarine is written. The article says the submarine by some is said to operate in northern waters as a spy-vessel belonging to Russia's Northern Fleet.

One of the unique features of the spy-sub is its ultra-small nuclear reactor aimed to charge the subs batteries, so it can stay much longer underwater, totally silent, than normal diesel-electric submarines. This is most important for a submarine aimed for spy-voyages not to be detected by foreign vessels, submarines, or detection systems on the seabed.

Norway's military intelligence operates a special purpose built vessel in the Barents Sea, named Marjata, which the Russians says carry detection equipment onboard.

The spy-sub B-90 Sarov was built in Nizhny Novgorod, but transported via Russia's inner waterways, to the Sevmash yard in Severodvinsk were it was equipped with its engines and nuclear reactor.

During the Cold War, the Northern fleet operated several special purpose submarines aimed for underwater spy operations.

Source: www.barentsobserver.com. Photo: Northern Fleet submarine crew (Thomas Nilsen)

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