New Sovietskiy Pantera class Fast Attack Submarine:

The Soviet Union has always been known to do things their own way. The first priority of their Navy when rebuilding was to replace the backbone of their fleet. This meant that most of the classes were fairly conventional in design. Once this happened, the Soviet military looked at producing designs which the West would likely describe as unusual. One of these designs was the Pantera class fast attack submarine. The design was similar to the Twentieth Century Alfa class submarine and is designed as a high speed interceptor submarine. It is smaller than the submarines of most navies and was designed to be very maneuverable.

The first of the class was laid down in 2063 and was commissioned in 2067. The class was contemporary with the Krokodil class submersible troop transport. As well, production on the larger Drakon class fast attack submarine was continued during the production of the smaller submarines. The Pantera class was produced in only small numbers with a total of eleven of the class being completed. The class was very expensive for its capabilities and it was decided to cut the class at eleven vessels. It is estimated that a Pantera class submarine cost about two-thirds of a Drakon class submarine and cost about the same to operate yet only has about half the capabilities. Instead of producing more vessels of the class, the Soviet decided to produce a larger and more capable submarine instead. Still, the class was kept in service until the coming of the Rifts and was considered valuable by the Soviet Admiralty. The vessel also broke many records including being the deepest diving and fastest combat submarine which was designed. Most of this class are believed to have been destroyed when the Rifts came but two of the class were able to make it to the secret Soviet base under Antarctica. As well, several of those which are assumed to have been lost seem to have simply disappeared and not sunk by American or British submarine.

The hull of the Pantera is even stronger than that of the old Alfa class due to being built from incredibly strong composites and alloys. These material are far stronger than titanium and allow the Pantera to dive to incredible depths. The officially listed maximum depth of the Pantera is listed as 4500 meters and the vessel can dive deeper than any American, British, or Soviet submarines. The hull is in a teardrop shape and the Pantera class submarine looks very similar to the Alfa class. Power is produced by two powerful fusion reactors and the submarine has a maximum speed of over 48 knots underwater. It is one of the fastest submarines ever built and is faster than any American or British fast attack submarines. The old Alfa class was a very noisy submarine and the Pantera class is far quieter but is still far noisier than larger submarines due to not having the space to mask the noise of the engines. The submarine uses a single pump jet is also protected by sonar absorbing materials to further reduce the noise signature. Sonar systems are similar to those carried on the previous Drakon class but are smaller to fit in the Pantera's hull.

The weapon suite on the Pantera class is reduced when compared to the previous Drakon class fast attack submarine. Torpedo tubes are reduced from eight torpedo tubes to four torpedo tubes. For the four 650 mm torpedo tubes, the Pantera carries twenty-four torpedoes. Instead of carrying cruise missiles like the Drakon class, the Pantera class carries long range missiles. While the warhead is smaller, the long range missiles have a similar range to cruise missiles and is capable against aircraft as well against ground targets. A total of twelve long range missiles are carried. They are mounted on either side of the sail or the submarine. To protect the submarine, a single "killer dart" torpedo interceptor is mounted under the bow of the submarine in a retractable mount. In the sail of the submarine, a short range missile system is mounted for use against aircraft and missiles.

The crew of the Pantera class is only slightly less than the larger Drakon class and are all officers. Enlisted crew were simply seen as not having enough skill. Still, the submarine has a large amount of automation to be able to be run by such a small crew. Crew compartments are far smaller than the Drakon class and the endurance is cut quite a bit as well. Still, the Pantera class is far safer than the old Alfa class which it shares many similarities.

Model Type: Pantera n class Fast Attack Submarine
Class: Ocean, Fast Attack Submarine
Crew: 42; All Officers (Has a high degree of automation)
Troop Capacity: None

M.D.C. by Location:

Super Heavy Torpedo Tubes (4 - front of submarine):150 each
Vertical Long Range Missile Launchers (12, Sides of Sail):100 each
Short Range Missile Launcher (1, Sail):100
Killer Dart "Interceptor" Torpedo Launcher (1, Under Bow):80
Main Sail:600
[1] Bow Planes (2):200 each
[2] Pump Jet Propulsor (1):400
[3] Main Body:2,400

[1] Destroying the submarines bow planes will reduce the submarine's ability to change depths but will not eliminate it. It also makes it difficult for the submarine's crew to control the submarine giving a penalty of -25% to all piloting rolls.
[2] Destroying the submarine's Pump Jet Propulsor causes serious problem. The submarine will no longer be able to use forward momentum and the bow planes to keep the submarine level. It is recommended that ballast takes are immediately blown so submarine comes to surface.
[3] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body destroys the submarine's structural integrity, causing it to sink. If the submarine is underwater, the entire crew will die unless protected by environmental armors that can withstand the pressure that the submarine is under. If on the surface, there are enough flotation devices and inflatable life rafts to accommodate everyone aboard.

Surface: 18.4 mph (16 knots/ 29.7 kph)
Underwater: 55.9 mph (48.5 knots /89.9 mph)
Maximum Depth: 14,763.0 feet (2.8 miles / 4,500 meters)
Maximum Effective Range: Effectively Unlimited due to fusion engines (needs to refuel every 20 years and requires maintenance as well). Ship carries 2 months of supplies on board.

Statistical Data:
Height: 46.6 feet (14.2 meters) not including periscopes and antenna
Width: 32.2 feet (9.8 meters)
Length: 267.4 feet (81.5 meters)
Displacement: 2,420 tons standard and 4,040 tons submerged
Cargo: Submarine is very cramped, 4 tons of nonessential equipment and supplies. Each enlisted crew member has a small locker for personal items and uniforms. Senior ship’s officers have more space for personal items. Most of the ship’s spaces are taken up by extra torpedoes, weapons, and engines.
Power System: Nuclear; average energy life of 20 years. Normally refuels every 10 years
Black Market Price: Not for sale; many nations and organizations would pay hundreds of millions of credits for a new and undamaged Pantera class Submarine.

Weapon Systems:

  1. Four (4) Super Heavy Torpedo Tubes: On the bow of the submarine are four torpedo tubes. Tubes are 25.6 inches (650 mm) wide and torpedoes can be used against both surface ships and submarines. Along with standard torpedoes, launcher can also fire missiles (Long or Cruise) in special canisters, rocket boosted ASW torpedoes, and mines. These are modern, variable option torpedoes that are about 25% faster than the latest US designs of the time period. Submarine carries 24 reloads for torpedoes. Soviet submarines normally carry a number of interceptor torpedoes which the standard Soviet tactic is to fire an interceptor torpedo down the path of a torpedo fired at the submarine.
    Maximum Effective Range: 40 miles (64 km) to 60 miles (96.6 km) depending on type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)
    Mega Damage: By Heavy torpedo or Super Heavy warhead type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details), can fire missiles (Long Range or Cruise) in special canisters as well (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire torpedoes one at a time or in volleys of two (2), three (3), or four (4) torpedoes. Reloading takes 1 full melee
    Payload: 4 Total (Has 24 torpedoes and missiles for reloads with 6 Interceptor torpedoes)
  2. Twelve (12) Vertical Launch Long Range Missile Launchers: One the sides of the submarine are twelve long range missile launchers that launch upwards. These launchers are mounted outside of the submarines pressure hull so they do not reduce internal volume. Missiles are launched in special canisters that enable the missiles to be used in depths down to 300 feet. Most missiles normally carried are fusion (Also smart missiles).
    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), eight (8), or twelve (12) missiles and can be fired at multiple targets at the same time.
    Payload: 12 missiles total. Submarine carries no reloads.
  3. Sail Mounted Short Range Missile Launcher (1): The submarine has a retractable short range missile launcher on the sail for defense against aircraft although is effective against missiles as well. Launcher can be used while the submarine is up to 80 feet (24 meters) deep and is useful against aircraft hunting the submarine while the submarine is underwater. Short Range Missiles are usually a mixture of 50% Armor Piercing and 50% Plasma. Launchers can lock onto multiple targets at the same. The systems missile launchers can target up four targets and can fire a volley up to twice per melee.
    Maximum Effective Range: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) missiles and can be fired up to four times per melee.
    Payload: 64 missiles.
  4. Killer Dart "Interceptor" Short Range Torpedo Launcher (1): The launcher is mounted under the bow of the submarine. These so called "Killer Darts" are a Russian interceptor torpedo, designed primarily for intercepting and hitting incoming torpedoes, with a secondary function against small submersibles and submersible power armors. They are mounted outside of the submarines pressure hull in retractable mounts. The launchers can only be reloaded in port. American and European designed prefer to fire interceptor torpedoes from their standard torpedo tubes. Launcher is primarily designed to intercept incoming torpedoes but can be used against other vessels, against large submarines, and against underwater troops. Other torpedoes can be used but are very rarely used.
    Maximum Effective Range: 2000 feet (609.6 meters) using interceptor torpedoes, other torpedoes use standard rules (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)
    Mega-Damage: By Short Range Torpedo Type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Each launcher can fire salvos of up to eight (8) short range interceptor torpedoes per melee.
    Payload: 48 Interceptor Torpedoes.
  5. Noisemakers: The submarine carries noisemakers to decoy torpedoes. These noisemakers are similar to those used by Coalition submarines. The noisemakers are launched from the middle of the submarine.
    Effect: 50% of decoying normal torpedoes and 20% of decoying smart torpedoes.
    Rate of Fire: 2 at a time (Can be reloaded in one melee)
    Payload: 20 Noisemakers.

Special Systems:
The submarine has all systems standard on a robot vehicle plus the following special features:

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Vessel Drawing is drawn and copyrighted by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Initial Concepts by Marina O'Leary ( ).

Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2002 & 2003, Kitsune. All rights reserved.