Russian Navy fortifies Sevastopol with underwater rocket system in response to Ukrainian drone threats

Amid escalating maritime tensions marked by Ukrainian drone assaults against the Russian naval intelligence ship, Ivan Khurs, the Russian Navy has reinforced its nautical defenses surrounding the strategically significant Sevastopol port in Crimea.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 BM-21PD or DP-62 "Damba" Multiple Launch Rocket System. (Picture source: new_militarycolumnist)

This bolstered defense involves a seldom-seen strategy: the deployment of the BM-21PD or "Damba", a distinctive variant of the BM-21 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS), capable of launching the unique underwater PRS-60 missiles.

The BM-21PD, derived from the 9K51 "Grad" MLRS, is a specialized naval system designed with maritime application in mind. Primarily, it serves to deter potential seaborne threats, safeguarding key naval pathways and mooring areas.

The unique feature of this system is its combat vehicle, the BM-21PD, which stands as a testament to naval adaptability. Equipped with a power rectifier, it can run on its own power source or from an industrial power grid of 380V.

The BM-21PD can launch its payload either directly or remotely, providing flexibility in maritime operations. It can function autonomously or with the help of a hydro-acoustic station - critical for underwater detections and effective naval warfare.

The system's transport vehicle, the 95TM, is a modified version of the ZIL-131 truck, reconfigured for maritime logistics. It's equipped with unified 9F37M racks, enabling it to carry up to 40 rounds of ammunition, ensuring sustained firepower during naval engagements.

The DP-62 system's PRS-60 unguided rocket is a marine combat game-changer. Capable of targeting ultra-small submarines operating at depths from 3 to 200 meters and within a non-ricochet firing range of 0.3 to 5 kilometers, it provides a significant advantage in undersea warfare.

With a specially designed warhead tip, the PRS-60 can effectively neutralize underwater saboteurs, providing a 99% hit probability with a half-volley (20 shots).

Boasting a 122mm caliber, a 3000mm barrel length, and 40 guides, the DP-62 "Damba" presents formidable firepower at sea. Its firing range, from a minimum of 300 meters to a maximum of 5000 meters, and the ability to reach a maximum elevation angle of 50 degrees ensures extensive maritime area coverage. Operated by a crew of three and capable of launching a full salvo in 20 seconds, the DP-62 stands ready to defend Russia's naval interests.