In a race for nuclearisation and developing better military technologies, many countries are investing highly in the R&D (Research and Development) of advanced weapons. 16,300 nuclear weapons are distributed among nine countries in the world. Russia being one of the major superpowers continues to grow its nuclear stockpile. Therefore, it has recently introduced underwater drones for the purpose of nuclear payload delivery.

The most powerful nuclear weapon ever created

Drones have proven to be weapons of the future. From drones which can aim, identify and fire at enemy targets to exploding drones which have attempted an assassination. It could be said that drones might be future soldiers. Thus, the efficiency of UAVs is unquestionable. The Russian navy is in plans to deploy 32 Poseidon underwater nuclear drones. These drones have been reported to have more than a 100 megaton yield which is far greater than Russia’s own record-breaking hydrogen bomb, Tsar Bomba. Poseidon could have the capability to completely obliterate western ports.

To put it into perspective, Tsar Bomba is known as the most powerful nuclear weapon ever created and detonated by humankind. The Poseidon nuclear warhead outdoes the 27,000 Kg Tsar Bomba. This drone is 6 feet in diameter and is 65 feet long. It weighs 100 tons and has become the biggest torpedo ever developed.

Graphic illustration of the grey colored, 6-feet long Poseidon Torpedo.
A graphic illustration of the underwater nuclear drone

Four submarines fitted with the Poseidon drones will join the Northern and Pacific Russian fleets. Additionally, each submarine can fit up to 8 such drones which are specifically designed to destroy enemy naval bases. Furthermore, these drones can travel at a speed of 70 knots (80 miles per hour). The Poseidon is also referred to as an unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV), autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), or simply an intercontinental-range, nuclear autonomous torpedo. This autonomous drone can maneuver seamlessly underwater and strike the target with the utmost precision. Also, they were previously known by the Russian codename Status-6 Oceanic Multipurpose System.

A perfect formula for destruction

A ‘special-purpose nuclear-powered submarine‘ is currently under construction at the Sevmash Shipyard in Severodvinsk, a port city on Russia’s White Sea. It will be one of the Poseidon carriers. Russian President, Vladimir Putin announced the fleet of nuclear drones in his ‘state of the nation’ speech last year. He spoke of an array of new nuclear weapons invulnerable to enemy interception. Given its intensity, the Poseidon drone can create a tsunami wave up to 500 meters (1,600 ft) tall. This would contaminate a wide area on an enemy’s coast with radioactive isotopes, namely the Cobalt-60. These drones are also said to be immune to anti-missile defense systems such as anti-ballistic missiles, laser weapons, and railguns. They are cloaked with stealth technology to elude acoustic tracking devices.