Russian-American Arctic Balance: A sky and a valley

Russian-American Arctic Balance: A sky and a valley


Russia has enough technical means to dominate the Arctic

The United States is concerned about military operations in the Arctic. Recently, the Pentagon signed a contract to develop military equipment for the Pole. It simply turns out that Americans do not currently have these modern machines, and the equipment available is out of date.

In a text “Arctic Strategy” published a month ago, the US announced its desire to push Russia (and also China, which is clearly expressing its Arctic ambitions) out of the area. Of course, it is easy to understand why the US considers Russia the most formidable opponent.

The weather is super cold, the air is very humid (up to 98%) and strong winds add to the frost. Icebergs and jagged ice sheets, “polar night” for a long time (up to 150 days of continuous darkness), the infrastructure is completely lacking. All of these factors make it very difficult to deploy large groups of troops.

Meanwhile, “potential rival” (referring to Russia) has owned many powerful and advanced equipment for these cold lands.

Russia owns the largest fleet of icebreakers in the world (more than 40 ships, including super-powerful nuclear icebreakers), a revived network of military bases in the northern latitudes. And Russia has an extensive arsenal of military equipment to act in super-cold weather conditions.

These are the military air defense systems “Tor-M2DT” and “Pantsir-SA”, mounted on the basis of the DT-30 “Vityaz” dual chain link amphibious terrain vehicle, despite all the harshest frosts. (up to -550С), not bored with ice or ice. Russia even has a specially modified “Arctic” variant of the S-400 Triumph air defense missile system.

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Russia has full military bases and scientific research centers in the Arctic

Russia also has an upgraded T-80BVM tank with a gas turbine engine that is easy to start in the icy outdoor. In addition, there are transport helicopters and combat variant “Arctic” Mi-8AMTSH-VA, trucks “Ural” and KamAZ, adapted to the harshest of ice.

In addition, in the “Arctic” formation of the Russian Armed Forces there are other unique equipment.

TREKOL terrain vehicle with large wheels with extremely low pressure, enough to run in any harsh terrain, absolutely no roads required. And the “Snow Car” on the sliding rails and the TTM-1901 “Berkut” track with comfortable, comfortable, air-conditioned cabin.

The Russian military inventors have not forgotten about the traditional means of transportation of the Far North, dog sled and reindeer. These seemingly ancient wagons will go places that cannot be moved by any modern technology.

The reason Russia has a dominant position in this cold land is due to the view that the Arctic plays a very important role in the national security and geopolitical, economic and military interests of the country. ; outlines an arctic strategy with a consistent long-term vision; and mobilize the implementation of all national systems and structures.

The US is trying to close the gap with Russia

During the Cold War years, the United States paid little attention to this area. As a result, the Pentagon has only one usable icebreaker today, the Polar Star. In addition, the Americans have almost no military bases in the Pole.

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The Tor-M2DT air defense system is designed specifically for the Arctic by Russia

In fact, the Pentagon does not have equipment capable of carrying cargo and personnel under the difficult conditions there.

The only tractor-off-road vehicle suitable for this job is the small Swedish-made BV206 dual-track wheeled vehicle. However, as the United States has, the car is quite old, belongs to the early versions, has not met the modern requirements for a long time.

Recently, the US Army Corps decided to renovate Arctic equipment and announced the opening of a competition within the framework of the CATV program (“Terrain vehicle for cold climates”). This is a huge project, the Pentagon plans to buy a total of 273 vehicles of this type.

In fiscal year 2021, the Pentagon has approved spending $ 6.6 million on inventions, construction and testing. Prototypes must be submitted by June 14th. From August through the end of December, testing is scheduled at the Alaskan sports arena. The winner will be determined in fiscal year 2022.

As awaited CATV will come in four designs for 4 different functions.

The first design is a military off-road vehicle, requiring at least 9 soldiers (excluding the driver) and capable of operating independently for 72 hours.

The second design was a military medical vehicle, designed for two doctors, two heavy wounded (lying) and four light wounded (able to sit).

The third design is a command-communication vehicle with a full range of modern communication and control facilities.

The fourth design is purely a truck to carry large military equipment over long distances.

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American Arctic Response Company (ARCG) employees shovel their Snowmobile Vehicle (LOSV) after a blizzard, assisted by Bandvagn 206 crawler rickshaw (BV-206 )

According to Tim Goddet, the Pentagon’s CATV program manager, the vehicles will be able to handle a wide range of tasks in extremely low temperatures and in terrain where vehicles cannot be used. others. New cars need to be able to move on ice, overcome water obstacles, climb hills and hills easily, simple to maintain and save fuel.

The contestants developed new models based on old inventions.

American company Oshkosh Defense and Singapore ST Engineering choose the facility as Bronco 3. The Bronco 3 dual chain tractor has served on the British military service for more than 20 years, participating in combat operations in Afghanistan.

The vehicle has bulletproof armor, a turret with a machine gun, a V-shaped bottom, helping to reduce damage when caught by mines. The floating terrain vehicle can wade in water at a speed of 5 km / h.

British company BAE Systems will propose a new model based on the Beowulf dual-chain trailer, largely similar to the Bronco 3 and BV206, but with a higher capacity.

Even after the completion of this project, the Pentagon’s shipping sector alone is still far behind Russia, and the totality of the ability to control the Arctic, it is not known when the US will level up. distance with Russia, to realize the dream of regaining its position in the Arctic.

Huy Binh

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