Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Golf class submarine
|Displacement:||2,794 tons surfaced/3,553 tons submerged (629)|
2,300-2,820 tons surfaced/2,700-3,553 tons submerged (629A)
|Length:||98.4 m (629)|
98.9 m (629A)
|Draught:||7.85 m (629) |
8.5 m (629A)
|Speed:||12.5 knots (23 km/h) submerged
12 to 14 knots (22 to 26 km/h) submerged
|Range:||70 days endurance|
|Complement:|| 80 (629)|
|Armament:||Three nuclear tipped ballistic missiles|
First three 629 boats D-1 launch system with R-11FM missiles
|Diving depth:|| 260 m (design)
300 m (maximum)
Design was started in the mid-1950s at the OKB-16 design bureau along with the D-2 missile system which it was to carry, and was based on the Foxtrot . The submarine was originally designed to carry three R-11FM ballistic missiles with a range of around 150 km. These were carried in three silos fitted in the rear of the large sail behind the bridge. They could only be fired on the surface but the submarine could be underway at the time. Only the first three boats were equipped with these — the remaining ones were equipped with the longer range R-13 missiles.
The boats were built at two shipyards — 16 in Severodvinsk and 7 in Komsomol Na Amur. Fourteen were extensively modified in 1966-1972 and because known as 629A's by the Soviet Navy and Golf IIs by NATO (the original version now being designated Golf I). The major change was the upgrade of the missile system to carry R-21 missiles and increased speed. A few others had different conversions, for example one boat was converted to a minelayer (629E).
The hull was divided into eight water-tight compartments, although this did not prevent to loss of K-129 on 3 August 1968 1390 km northwest of Oahu in the Pacific Ocean. The submarine exceeded its crush depth for unknown reasons and imploded, the accident being registered by the SOSUS network. The United States recovered parts of the submnarine recovered in July 1974 from a depth of around 5 km, in an operation named Project Jennifer.
Later versions had significant modifications starting in 1967, the new version being called Project 629A. The NATO designation for the submarine was Golf, and Golf I/Golf II when the later variant appeared.
All boats had left Soviet service by 1990. In 1993, ten were sold to North Korea for scrapping. These boats have never been used operationally by North Korea, although their ballistic missile launch systems may have been studied by the North Korean military in order to improve other missile technology.
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