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The indissoluble bond between Soviet Russia and titanium alloy nuclear submarine


Titanium and titanium alloys are new structural materials developed in the 1950s. They have a series of advantages such as high strength, low density, non-magnetic and corrosion resistance. They are favored by naval powers and are widely used in the ship field.

As early as 1963, the Soviet Union and Russia began to study the application of titanium alloys in submarines, breaking through the processing and use of a large number of titanium alloys. The proportion and level of titanium alloy used in submarines are among the highest in the world. In addition, Russia also has a research and development production system for titanium alloys for ships, which can produce various titanium alloy materials for ships, such as titanium alloy nT-3B for submarine shells, titanium alloy nT-7M for marine engines, and titanium alloy nT for power plants. -5B and so on. However, due to the production cost of titanium alloys, the Soviet Union/Russia has stopped using titanium alloy pressure-resistant hulls since the construction of the “Akula”-class attack-type nuclear submarines, but titanium alloys are still used in marine equipment or systems.

Unlike Western countries such as the United States and Britain, which mainly use titanium alloys to make submersible pressure-resistant casings, Su/Russia is the only country in the world that uses titanium alloys to build nuclear submarine pressure-resistant casings. According to statistics, from 1963 to the present, the Soviet Union/Russia has built a total of 19 types of 19 titanium alloy submarines. At present, there are only two "Serra"-class attack-type nuclear submarines and one "Typhoon"-class strategic nuclear submarine in service.

The "French" class cruise missile nuclear submarine is the world's first titanium alloy shell structure submarine. This class has only one ship and was commissioned in 1969. The "French" class submarine is mainly used for the performance and function test of titanium alloy submarine. The Soviet Union mastered the manufacture and welding of high-strength titanium alloy hull structure during the design and construction of "French" class submarine, casting and forging of titanium alloy and Manufacturing process for valve parts and other mechanical components. In addition, the boat itself is also a laboratory. The former Soviet Union tested new prototypes of weapons and equipment under real-scale conditions. These specially developed products played an important role in the development of new Soviet/Russian titanium alloy submarines.

The first boat of the "Alpha" attack-type nuclear submarine was commissioned in 1971. The boat used a number of new technologies, especially the use of a large number of alloy materials. The "Alpha" class submarine hull was double-layered with a high-pressure casing and a pressure-resistant casing. Titanium alloy thick plates, titanium alloy thick plates not only have good toughness, but also have high strength, which can resist the shock wave caused by the explosion of deep water bombs. The boat has outstanding depth and high speed, and its safe dive depth is 900m. The maximum underwater speed is 41kn-42kn.

   In addition to the use of titanium alloy in the housing, the "Alpha" submarine also uses a large number of titanium alloy pipes, titanium valves and their titanium alloy fittings, heat exchange plates and pipes, propellers and propeller shafts in power drives (compared to the previous use) The special copper alloy, under the condition of constant speed, the weight is reduced by more than 50%, the service life is more than 5 times that of the copper alloy.) The key components such as the sonar shroud and the torpedo launching system on the submarine use titanium alloy.

The "Mike"-class attack-type nuclear submarine built only one ship and served in the former Soviet Navy in 1988. The boat adopts a double-shell structure, and the external pressure-resistant casing uses a thick plate of titanium alloy material, and the inner and outer casings have a large spacing, and are divided into seven compartments. The reactor on the boat uses a pressurized water reactor, and its engine disk and rotor blades, pipes, valves and fittings, heat exchange plates and pipes are all made of titanium alloy. The navigation system, search radar, sonar (titanium material shroud) are installed on the boat; the weapon system is also significantly increased compared with the "alpha" level. There are 6 torpedo tubes (radiation tubes made of titanium alloy, the strength is improved). The torpedo launch parameters and other performance are greatly improved), so it can launch a variety of weapons such as cruise missiles, anti-submarine missiles and torpedoes, greatly enriching the submarine's attack means and improving the combat effectiveness of the submarine. During the experimental operation, the boat had landed to a depth of 1,250 m, creating a world record for the depth of combat submarines.

  The "Serra" class first boat was commissioned in 1984, and a total of 2 types and 4 ships were built. The "Serra" class adopts a double-shell structure, and the external pressure-resistant casing uses a thick plate of titanium alloy material, and the inner and outer casings have a large spacing. The power plant is a pressurized water reactor and two steam turbines. The engine disk and rotor blades, pipes, valves and fittings, heat exchange plates and pipes are all made of titanium alloy. The navigation system, search radar, sonar (titanium material shroud) are installed on the boat. The propeller and the propeller shaft in the power drive are made of titanium alloy. The weapon system is equipped with 8 pneumatic and hydraulic balanced torpedo launchers. It is a launch tube made of titanium alloy, which can carry multi-type torpedoes, anti-submarine missiles and long-range cruise missiles. It has strong attack capability.

The typhoon-class ballistic missile submarine is the world's largest nuclear submarine. Its first boat was commissioned in 1982. The "Typhoon" class nuclear submarine adopts a double-shell structure, the non-pressure-resistant casing is made of high-strength and low-magnet steel, and the pressure-resistant casing is made of titanium alloy. The "Typhoon" class has a total of 19 cabins, which are viewed from the cross section as "good" type layouts, and titanium alloy materials are used in the main pressure hull, the pressure-resistant central section and the torpedo compartment. The "Typhoon" class's sturdy dual-shell structure allows most of the torpedo's explosive force to be absorbed by the double-shell pressure chamber and the water outside the casing when it is attacked by ordinary torpedoes, thus protecting the hull. In addition, the reactor piping on the boat, engine and rotor blades, valves and their accessories, heat exchange plates, most pipelines, propellers and propeller shafts in power drives, navigation system fixed components, search radar fixed components, sonar The shroud is made of a titanium alloy material.

Titanium alloys have long been widely used in submarine haulage equipment and systems. In addition to the aforementioned Qin alloy hull applications, Su/Russ also uses titanium alloy materials in submarine sonar devices, nuclear power plants, and submarine piping components.

On the titanium alloy pressure-resistant shell submarine, the Soviet Union began to use the titanium alloy pressure-resistant hull from the "Akura"-class attack-type nuclear submarine in service in 1984 (the design time is "Serra" and "Typhoon" After the level), use high-strength steel instead. The current Russian government attaches great importance to the development of the titanium alloy industry. Russia has issued a large number of support policies to save and revive the titanium alloy industry after the collapse of the Soviet Union, forming the world's largest manufacturer and manufacturer of sponge titanium - VSMPO- AVISMA Associates has laid the foundation for the wide application of Russian titanium alloys in submarines.

In addition, in order to ensure that the Russian Navy continues to lead other countries in the field of titanium applications, Russian materials and submarine experts continue to call on the government to develop titanium alloy development plans, while strengthening the research and development of titanium alloy technology, including high-strength titanium with strength greater than 1300MPa. Alloy, high-formability titanium alloy with better welding performance, low-cost titanium alloy material suitable for large-scale applications. With the recovery of Russia's national strength and the breakthrough of the above-mentioned key technologies of titanium alloys, the proportion of titanium alloy materials used in Russian submarines will further increase in the future.

Writing:Lixing Titanium cathy


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