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      Submarine SS-533
Project 1710 / Beluga Class
 
 
 
 
 
 

The Beluga had her beginnings in 1960 when Malachite engineers recommended creating a submarine to examine the means of reducing a submarine water resistance or drag, the same concept as the albacore in the U.S. Navy. The proposal was well recieved by the Navy and by the Siberian Department of the USSR Academy of Sciences, which was engaged in research of underwater shapes. The project recieved pleminary approval and, as an early step, a large, buoyant-ascent model known as Tunets (Tuna) was constructed for research into various means of controlling the boundary layer, including the use of gas infusion and polymer ejection.

The 37 3/4-foot (11.5 m) model Tunets was designed by Malachite and built by the Siberian Department for testing at an acoustics range near Sukhumi on the Black Sea. Model tests with polymer demonstrated a decrease of 30 to 40 percent in total resistance to provide more than a 12 or 13 percent increase in speed.

The technical design for the Project 1710 / Beluga submarine was developed in 1975, and the Admiralty-Sudomekh yard began construction. The lengthy interval was caused by having to overcome the opposition to the project by some scientists at the Krylov Research Institute who considered that all data required from the project could be obtained from laboratories. the diesel-electric Beluga was completed at Leningrad in February 1987 and transferred through inland waterwaya to the Black Sea for trials.

The Beluga`s hull form is a body-of-revolution with a length-to-beam ratio 7:1, similar to that of the USS Albacore. The hull - with a low-profile faired-in sail - reveals a very high degree of streamlining with fully rectable bow planes. A large sonar is provided in the bow section with fully rectactable bow planes. The submarine has a system for delivering a polymer solution to the boundary layer flow over the hull, appendages, and propeller. The propeller and shaft are configured to permit changing the axial distance between the propeller and hull, providing reserchers with the opportunity to investigate the effects of polymer on the thrust deduction factor. There is extensive interior space for research equipment.

After arriving at Balaklava on the Black Sea, in sea trials the Beluga demonstrated the perfomance promised by her designers. Halting research was the shortage of funds within the Russian Navy. During her relatively period of trials, the Beluga did provide important insights into submarime hydrodynamics as well as scaling data to improve the accuracy of predictions based on model tank testing. Among the Beluga`s notable achievements were a bette understanding of submarine hull shaping and the effectiveness of polymers on both hull drag and propulsion efficiency.

Submarine SS-533 was laid down in the SSZ "Sudonekh" in Leningrad on 22 January 1985 (number #01620), launched on 05 October 1986, and commissioned on 19th December 1987 into the Black Sea Fleet.

The submarine SS-533 was used in tests with 1988 on 1997.

Decomissioned in to 2002, scrapped in Inkerman, Sevastopol, in summer 2002.

Commanders:
- E. Zdanevich;
- R. Bondarev;
- A . Peshko;
- S. Boldyrev.

Specifications
Builder: Baltic Shipyard, Leningrad, Russia
Year: 1985
Displacement:

1,407 Tons Surfaced / 2,500 Tons Dived

Speed: 15 knots Surfaced / 26.6 knots Dived
Dimensions:

64 x 9 x 5.8 meters / 210 x 29 1/2 x 16 1/2 feet

Dive Depth: 300 meters
Propulsion: 1 Electric Motor (5500 hp)
1 Shaft/Propeller
1Electric "Silent Run" (50 hp)
1 Diesel Generator (680 hp)
Crew: 29
Sonar:

MGK-400M Rubikon-M active

Armament: None
 
             
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