The Russian Navy is introducing an innovative system to train its pilots to conduct anti-submarine warfare (ASW) operations. This will include duel combat between pilots and submariners on special simulators which imitate real combat conditions. Anti-submarine aircraft crew members will therefore be trained in submariner centers.
The training of antisubmarine pilots under the new method will begin in 2019 in the Naval Academy center in Obninsk, the main Navy commandement said. The idea to jointly train antisubmarine crews and submariners appeared long ago, but there was no technical capability to implement it, Rear Admiral, ex-commander of a submarine and Hero of Russia Vsevolod Khmyrov said.
"Computer technologies provided such a possibility. It is a major advantage for combat training. The Navy currently combines heterogeneous forces - surface warships, submarines and aviation. Joint training and the knowledge of each other’s tactic will make the fleet more effective. Naval pilots and submariners will understand the logic of the adversary," he said.
The Naval Academy trains and retrains crews of submarines of all classes. Servicemen are trained in all specialties, including commanders, weapons experts, communication and acoustic experts, and navigators. A complete crew is trained and 17-24 crews are trained each year. There are sixty men in a diesel-electric sub and 170 in a nuclear one. Naval cadets also study there. Submarine officers upgrade skills there for four months after five years in a naval school.
The center has classrooms with real and imitated devices used on submarines of various types. Simulators imitate the operations of the coning tower and bridge. The torpedo class teaches the design of modern torpedoes and antisubmarine missiles. The center in Obninsk trained submariners who launched Kalibr cruise missiles in Syria. The center was initially created to train crews of nuclear submarines. Its main simulator imitates a nuclear reactor and control, servicing and verification equipment. Computerized simulators were supplied in the past years to train bilateral combat of pilots and submariners.
"Pilots and submariners have to know joint actions against adversary groups of warships, search and destruction of submarines and strikes at coastal objects," expert Valentin Selivanov said. "They have to study theory and experience of a joint search, the targeting rules and joint strikes. Such operations demand good cohesion. Pilots and submariners have to identify a warship and select weapons for destruction. The information goes to the commander who orders an attack," he added.
It was decided in 2019 to upgrade Il-38 antisubmarine aircraft operational in the Northern fleet and two regiments of the Pacific fleet in Primorye and Kamchatka. The onboard equipment will be fully replaced. The modernization of the Il-38 fleet has to be completed in 2025, the Izvestia said.