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Underwater "Fighter Sub's": Possible?

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posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 07:28 PM
Would it be possible to have small subs that can act and maneuver as Fighter Planes but underwater instead?

They would be carried by Assault Ship's and can be used to protect the likes of large vessels such as Aircraft Carriers/SSBN's etc. It would be more agile, fast and stealthy against Sonar's, alongside being less bulky in shallow waters/narrow rivers etc.

The weapons could range from:

* Mines/Mine laying
* SAM's for anti aircraft duties on surface
* Ideal for clandestine missions
* Sneak beneath enemy vessels and launch missile/magnetic mine etc
* Underwater capable missiles(If possible)
* A slightly bigger version could be used as the next SEAL delivery vehicle

As for the powerplant im not so sure. But if the sub is hit/damaged etc, The cockpit can act as an escape pod(A la F-111 Aardvark).

[edit on 17-7-2008 by Cutaway]

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 07:37 PM
Well, interesting post but it is for the time being a dream or wishful thinking. As far as I know such Sub does not exist as of yet. The more advanced sub out there right now is probably the Astute Class from England. Will there ever be one that will have the same technology as you talk about, maybe in another 100 years and it is a long time to be waiting for.
Unless of course, it is of Alien origin.

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 08:17 PM
Wouldn't there be too much resistance from the water? For an engine to create high speeds under water it would have to be massive and then it would be too heavy, no? Plus turning it at high speed would put massive stresses on the hull, so that would have to be very strong again adding more weight.

I bet there's a limit to speed based on weight and resistance?

It would take technology we don't have yet.

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 08:21 PM
Modern SSN's do indeed manuver like fighters albiet at slower speeds. The Russians did have a ultra fast SSN known in the west as the Alfa class. With its titanum hull it could dive deep too, but its reactor was so overpowered it coul dbe heard for miles off thus reducing its effectiveness.

The issue with small subs is one of propulsion, range, and endurance

posted on Jul, 17 2008 @ 08:56 PM
Supercavitating torpedo's overcome the resistance factor by ejecting a small portion of the thrust they create out of the nose of the weapon creating a thin skin of gas and bubbles..which they travel within. It may be possible to modify a submarine to give it a one time DASH capability with rocket motors to push it out of harms way and perhaps disrupt a conventional torpedo. If the Russian Shkval rocket torpedo system could be scaled up then why not.
The NOISE would absolutely give away your position..but if your facing the Shkval you have very few evade it travels at a speed that precludes conventional tactics. Rockets are great but once you light one up your moving....I think having a 300kt dash would be a useful feature..whether a sub today could withstand the pressures...and stresses...I dont know.
Personally I think the day of manned missile subs should be on the wane.
Automated subs and submerged bases would be much prefferable. Thats my 2cents worth..sorry Swabbies

posted on Jul, 18 2008 @ 06:30 AM
If I remember correctly, John Lear talked about such kind of submarines which the US Navy has in his last interview with Project Camelot. I believe it was in part2 though I'm not 100% sure.

posted on Jul, 18 2008 @ 07:37 AM
I'm wondering if anyone remembers the tv show "Seaquest DSV"...from the 90s, I think...?

I recall they had large, carrier-type- submarines that operated as well....carriers and science vessles, as well as basically battleships, they were kinda shaped like a giant squid(hello 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea). They also had Destroyer/Heavy Assault type submarines that were very wide, kind of B-2 Bomber shaped, and very flat, relatively speaking...But was most interesting was they had a single-manned sub, that for most of the show was a project of one of the characters, that was small, kinda fish/dolphin-shaped, and literally swam, at quite high speeds.... far as I'm aware, I recall reading about it in a science magazine, the third type, inspired by fish, is actually really under development.

posted on Jul, 18 2008 @ 08:23 AM
There used to be a website called 'deepangel' that discussed such a scenario. It was sadly fiction but suggested that the engines would be variations on hydrogen rockets, basically splitting seawater and recombining it.

The noise was theorised to not be so much of a problem, as the sub-fighters would be fast enough and manourerable enough to negate this. The speed of sound underwater is about 1500m/s (3000 knots), so if they managed to go quicker than that they would arrive at a target and be gone before the noise arrived, effectively breaking the sound barrier underwater. You have to get away from thinking deep and silent.

Sadly this is a long way of, but DARPA are already looking into it, sadly at nowhere near the speeds we would like to see.


[edit on 18-7-2008 by paperplane_uk]

posted on Jul, 18 2008 @ 09:57 AM
Artwork from SeaQuest DSV

Artwork from DeepAngel

ATS Discussion on Submarine Aircraft Carrier

[edit on 7.18.08 by toreishi]

posted on Jul, 18 2008 @ 12:24 PM
you must have a absolute reliable depth control system in use here at these speeds. One mistake errant instrument and you can go below the design crush depth in a couple of seconds...and it would be all over.
This is not a project for lightweights.

A number of aircraft were lost in the early days along with thier pilots in testing out the terrain following nap of the earth type radar...early models. Some tests in laboratory conditions others in actual combat. Many of these aircraft simply augered into the ground.

This system would be no less dangerous. Speed is not everything. Nonetheless you must have an absolute reliable depth control system at these speeds.


posted on Jan, 26 2009 @ 05:19 PM
Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but I found this while searching for this exact same topic. There are a few spin-off web series based on the SeaQuest DSV universe. Now, the performance characteristics of said "Subfighters" is grossly in excess of what they would actually be, but they used an "advanced" kind of hydrojet. I'm not sure how much better than normal underwater propellars that would be, but I think the difficulties of creating supercavitation for something the size of a subfighters (if you assume it's a similar size to, say, a small aircraft) is quite difficult.

Let's also remember that speed is relative to how fast everything else can go underwater, and just because you have weapons which can outrun the craft you're in, doesn't mean you necessarily don't bother building the craft. Afterall, in the early days of military aviation, did they say "oh, hell, we shouldn't even bother building aeroplanes for use in combat because they couldn't possibly break the sound barrier and bullets can"? Of course not.

If a subfighter had a well defined role to play, then it would be built. It's not at all technically unfeasible, as it could easily use a combination of ballast and hydrofoils (let's not forget that water is a fluid just like air and so lift still applies; it could be used in the opposite direction), and as for crush depth it would probably be used for things in shallower water, leaving deep sea missions to larger vessels. It could carry torpedoes the same way that some more modern fighters (i.e., the F-22) carry their ordinance (in a closed bay; in this case torpedo tubes built into the fighter), or even use guns firing supercavitating bullets (although this is much more difficult than just using torpedoes; perhaps you could design miniature torpedoes that could be fired from the thing?). All this is entirely possible within the foreseeable future (there isn't really any sci-fi to the tech). The problem with the concept is in the role it would play. If it has no role, it won't be built. There would be no point.

On a side note, this type of technology would probably only be developed if there was extensive ocean colonization, as there was on SeaQuest DSV.

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