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  Russian Sub in Providence

Juliett 484

Soviet Juliett class
Project 651) K-81 (484) 1965

Project 651 (NATO designation - Juliett) was ordered by the Soviet Navy in the late 1950's. The submarine was designed to provide an effective nuclear-strike capability against east coast cities such as New York and Washington.

The Juliett was designed to carry four nuclear-armed cruise missiles. She also carried up to 22 torpedoes, capable of being fired from ten torpedo tubes.

P-5 Cruise MissileJuliett originally carried P-5 cruise missiles, which featured a special system of two unfolding wings, allowing it to be launched from the relatively small diameter cylindrical submarine launcher. P-5 had a range of about 300 miles at an altitude of 650-1300 feet and carried a 2000-pound nuclear payload. More accurate self-guided cruise missiles P-6 and P-500 were later commissioned for targeting US aircraft carriers, such as USS Saratoga.

Juliett's low-profile hull was manufactured from austenitic steel, which provided a very low magnetic signature. The hull was then covered with a specially designed sonar/ sound-absorbing sheath. Consisting of two-inch thick hard rubber tiles, this "second skin" made her especially difficult to track. Unique silver zinc batteries allowed her to travel submerged at 17.5 knots for short periods. She had a maximum underwater range of 810 miles.

She was fitted with many sophisticated radio and electronic devices, such as a Kasatka satellite downlink that provided targeting information. A powerful target guidance radar measuring more than 100 square feet in area was built into the forward edge of the sail structure. The radar was deployed from the front of the sail, which opens by rotating 180 degrees.

Original plans called for 35 of these submarines to be built, augmenting nuclear-powered Project 675 (ECHO II) class boats. (The ECHOs were an enlarged nuclear version of the Juliett with 8 missile launchers.) Only 16 Julietts were actually built; most were produced by a shipyard in Gorky between 1962 and 1968.

Six submarines were assigned to the Northern Fleet, six were split between the Baltic and the Black Sea and four were assigned to the Pacific Fleet. In 1987, all the Northern Fleet boats were re-assigned to the Baltic Fleet.


  • LENGTH -max. 300' (91M)
  • BEAM - max. 32.8' (10M)
  • DISPLACEMENT 3,174 tons surfaced; 3,636 tons with fuel; 4,137 Tons Submerged
  • DRAFT 23.0' (7M)
  • 2 main diesels (3500 hp each)
  • 2 electric motors (3000 hp each)
  • 2 Shafts/Propellers
  • 2 Electric "Silent Run" generators (150 hp)
  • 1 Diesel Generator (3000 hp)
  • BATTERIES 300 Tons Silver Zinc
  • SPEED/KNOTS 19 surfaced; 14 submerged
  • RANGE/MILES 9000 at 8 knots surfaced, max. with additional fuel 18,000 at 7 knots; 810 miles submerged at 2.74 knots
  • ENDURANCE 90 days
  • COMPLEMENT 12 officers, 16 NCO, 54 crew
  • TORPEDO TUBES 6 bow - 21" (533 MM); 4 stern - 16" (400 MM)
  • TORPEDOES Bow: 18 Type 53 Dual Purpose Pattern Active/Passive
  • Homing up to 13 miles at up to 55 mph
  • Stern: 4 anti-submarine
  • MISSILES 4 P-5 (P-6 or P-500) Guided Cruise Missiles
  • Propulsion: Turbojet + 2 Solid Fuel Boosters
  • Warhead: up to 2,200 lbs
  • Time for the first missile launch - 4.5 minutes; Second- after 10 seconds


Page content courtesy provided by USS Saratoga Museum Foundation, Inc.

USS Saratoga Museum Foundation

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Photos by Richard Weinberg