‘Gorgon’ to protect Russia’s maritime border

20 November 2016 Alexey Moiseev, Izvestia
The latest system, to detect saboteurs-divers and mini-submarines by their metal parts and structure, will soon be inducted by the Russian Coast Guard.
Saboteur
The system detects enemy divers at a depth of up to thirty metres. Source:mil.ru

The Russian Coast Guard has received a unique defensive system, which will make the coastal region inaccessible for divers-scouts, miniature submarines and floating drones. ‘Gorgon,’ as the defence system is called, has been built by the scientific-industrial Dedal complex. It is the first system in Russia which can detect an underwater target using an electromagnetic field.

Gorgon allows the control of the coastal zone, detecting enemy divers at a depth of up to thirty metres. The search is performed on the metal equipment items – knives, oxygen delivery devices and oxygen cylinders. Gorgon can also see trim elements, handles, frames fitted on enemy mini-submarines.

“At the moment, Gorgon is available on one of the Russian power structures and stands on one of the offshore facilities,” said Sergei Kozlov, Deputy General Director for scientific research activities at SPC Dedal, to Izvestia. “At the moment, the system continues to be refined according to customer requirements. At the beginning of next year, the system will be able to transmit information via radio instead of a wired line, and will also include floating solar batteries,” he said.

Gorgon is a complex automated system consisting of eight electronic control units mounted both on shore and at the bottom of the sea. From the units connected to the attendant console three sensitive cable ending with induction boxes are connected at the bottom. Gorgon’s cables detect targets by local variations in the Earth’s magnetic field, occurring when metal objects are nearby.

After detecting such abnormalities, the electronic control unit analyzes the received signal, and transmits information about the site where a saboteur has been discovered.

Gorgon works equally effectively at any sea current speed and weather conditions, while a special algorithm allows it to distinguish a diver or a submarine adrift of the oceanic debris. The system creates a continuous zone of detection of up to 250 m wide at a distance of up to 500 metres from the shore.

“At present, the main means of detecting underwater saboteurs are hydro acoustic stations that are mounted on floating buoys,” said military analyst Oleg Ljamin to Izvestia. “They effectively intersect enemy divers at a distance of up to half a kilometre, but have problems with detecting them in the coastal zone: the water depth may not be enough to complete the work station transmitter, and it can prevent the diver from detecting complex bottom topography. Another disadvantage of sonar buoys is their vulnerability during enemy air attacks. The sophisticated equipment can also suffer during a particularly violent storm.”

Ljamin said the only company that has been able to master the production of electromagnetic systems of protection similar to Gorgon is the Israeli Galder-Secotec.

“Multiguard security systems, manufactured by Galder-Secotec, are used for both marine conditions, and for the protection of terrestrial objects,” said Ljamin. “However, the universal system is adapted for the marine environment and its sensors detect metal at a relatively short distance.

First published in Russian by Izvestia.

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