Rafael showcases its torpedo countermeasures for submarines at Pacific 2017
At Pacific 2017, Rafael is also showcasing its submarine anti-torpedo systems: Shade, Scutter and Torbuster. Doron Levi, Marketing and Business Development Director for Naval Warfare Systems at Rafael, told MONS: “When an incoming torpedo is detected by a submarine, there are two things the Commander can do: manoeuvring and sending out a counter-measure. These are all human made decisions. We decided to offer systems that can facilitate and improve this decision-making either automatically or semi-automatically.”
Shade is the first step in the process. It is a torpedo defence suite that protects submarines from attacks by all types of acoustic homing torpedoes. “It consists of three components,” continues Mr. Levi: “A defence programmer that analyses threats and selects a pre-programmed response; a launcher controller that enables the selection and firing of torpedo countermeasures; up to 32 launchers for firing up to 32 decoys.”
In terms of decoys, Rafael offers the Subscut. Launched from the signal ejector of any submarine, the Subscut detects active acoustic transmissions, resulting in Countermeasure selection and generation of the appropriate deception signal for transmission, including Doppler effects, target highlights, and target self-noise. “However, torpedoes are becoming more and more intelligent and some have a long autonomy, as such it sometimes become inevitable to send another counter-measure that can end the run of the torpedo by disabling its electronics and motors,” says Mr. Levi.
To this end, Rafael has developed the Torbuster. Launched from an external launcher, it propels itself at a safe distance from the submarine and seduces the torpedo by transmitting specific acoustic signals. When the torpedo approaches the decoy, at the closest point of approach, it self explodes and neutralises it.
Scutter is already in use with the Royal Australian Navy on the ‘Collins’ class, as well as with the US and the Israeli navies.