Banner Ad 1

USS Memphis Torpedoed the Kursk?! - Revisting the Kursk theories?!

This is the place to read all about submarines in the real world!

Postby Slats » Mon Sep 26, 2005 1:33 am

Hi guys,
last Saturday night (24 Sep) in Australia a program on the SBS network called “As it happened” was shown. This was a hour long program reiterating what conspiracy theorists mooted for sometime, that is the Kursk’s fate involved a minor collision with the USS Toledo and a premptive defensive strike from the USS Memphis via a Mk48 torpedo.

This whole program’s intent was to try an uncover why it took the Russian Navy so long to locate and attempt a rescue of the Kursk given she went down in such shallow water that if raised on her nose (or what was left of it) 39% of the submarine would have cleared the surface of the water. In fact you could clearly see her from a low flying aircraft. The program also sought to explain why repeated offers from the West to help in a rescue were rejected by the Russians.

For those not in the know, the official finding of fact about the Kursk was a burst Hydrogen-peroxide ("High Test Peroxide" or HTP) line in a torpedo aboard the Kursk, reacted with surrounding metals causing an exponential build up of gases inside the torpedos casing and this rapidly expanding gas blew apart the torpedo casing, started a fire in the torpedo room, and the fire out of control cooked off the torpedos in the room, blowing the front end literally off the sub. Hydrogen-peroxide powered torpedoes were abandoned by the West in the 1950’s for the inherit dangers of leaking HTP reacting with surrounding metals. The Soviet Navy and later the Russian Navy I understand have only just abandoned the use of this fuel source.

Previous examples of problems in the West with HTP include the sinking of the HMS Sidon on June 16, 1955 : -A torpedo being readied for a morning test shot had begun a "hot-run" — its engine had started while it was still inside the submarine and was over-revving, creating very high pressures in its fuel system. Known as "the Fancy" this torpedo used HTP as an oxidizer. When an oxidizer line burst, HTP sprayed onto the copper fittings inside the torpedo, decomposing into oxygen and steam. The torpedo's warhead did not detonate, but its hull burst violently, rupturing the torpedo tube and causing the flooding that destroyed the boat.

Re the Kursk. There were an an abundancy of theories related to her loss before the finding of fact. A lot of these theories suggested Western interference but these were dismissed as fanciful.

The SBS program tied together two elements not stated in the finding of fact: What her exercise mission was, and the unusual economic responses by the US Government.

The Kursk mission according to the program was to demonstrate to Chinese observers the Russian super-speed torpedo called the Shkval, or the Squall in English. Originally revealed in 1995, this rocket-powered supercavitating torpedo travels at a velocity of approximately 375-400 km/h or about 230-250 mph that would give a targeted vessel very little chance to perform evasive maneuvers.

The program stated that the US did not want Chinese purchases of this weapon so the US deployed two LA class attack subs to the test area. The Toledo’s mission was to run an interference course – a course where they not only delibrately reveal themselves to the Kursk, but set a course where in the very shallow waters of the test area, the Toldeo would affectively be in harms way between the test shot and the floating target, thus hampering the exercise. According to the program in such shallow waters manourving two subs of their respective sizes would have been difficult. Tight turning the Kursk’s length could with very little error in trim have bottomed her out. The program suggests the Toledo accidentally struck the Kursk, and this noise is consistent with an initial sisemograph reading which the finding of fact stated was caused by the HTP torpedo exploding. The collision apparently did not cause the Kursk any significant damage but damaged the Toledo.
The Toledo left the area and made for Norwegian port – which is a fact as satelite imaging days later show her on the surface in port. According to the program, the Memphis was covering the Toledo while the Toledo was running interference, with Toledo’s damage and departure Memphis took up station in her place. The Memphis then heard the flooding of the Kursks tubes openning of the outer torpedo doors the pre rocket start up of the Shkval. The Memphis steered hard to try and get out of the route the Shkval would take, and thus “enagaged” the Memphis fired an Mk-48 at the Kursk. This torpedo struck the Kursk’s forward torpedo room detonating the magazine and ripping the Kursks front end apart. So the program suggests…

The program suggests the cancellation of a $10 billion debt by Clinton two weeks later and a new multi billion dollar low interest loan to Russia may have been an act of compensation. The program suggests that the reason why the Russians rejected help was:
· That if the US torpedoed it the West rescue might remove any evidence of this
· That a Shkval or related technology might have survived the incident and a West rescue might remove this
· That survivors (who survived for nearly three days in the aft compartment might have talked about the incident).

Wrong or right, fact or fiction, a really interesting program.
Have any other's heard anything about this or damage being repaired to the Toledo after mid August 2000?

Edited By Slats on 1127713063
John Slater

Sydney, Australia
User avatar
Registered User
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2003 7:18 pm
Location: Sydney Australia

Postby Casey Thrower » Tue Sep 27, 2005 7:43 pm

Had the Kursk been torpedoed every ship within miles would have heard the launch transients, the torpedo running in, and the seeker go active. The Kursk itself would have detected it and taken evasive action and/or launched countermeasures. Every disaster has conspiracy theories but none which are logical.
Casey Thrower SC Member #1675

"Oh Lord, Thy sea is so large and my boat is so small"
User avatar
Casey Thrower
Registered User
Posts: 281
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 12:30 am
Location: Meridianville, Alabama

Postby 971 » Fri Sep 30, 2005 12:51 pm

It also confuses me how could the ships taking part in the exercise not hear a foreign torpedo launch?
Ok, one might say that in the miriad of sounds caused by the participants (ships cruising at diffrent speeds, a lot of overhead activity as well, etc.) USS Memphis' launch might be have been confused with another Russian boat practice launch against Peter the Great cruiser or any other taget designated ship.
It's also known that "Karelia" a DELTA-IV boomer was some 17 nm from Kursk, being shaken greatly by the explosions. Yet, her skipper didn't think that was reason enough for extending his radio mast and communicating the incident to the Fleet Headquarters, believing that it was a exercise related weapon test, perhaps a depth charge. But nothing was he reported of aquiring on his passive arrays the sounds of a foreign homing torpedo!
I say that either what was printed about the Kursk's sinking at the time was heavily biased by the official statements OR there is lots of facts that are still shrouded in secrecy!
User avatar
Registered User
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2005 2:41 am
Location: Denmark

Postby Chuck Chesney » Sat Oct 01, 2005 10:43 am

It sounds to like that TV program should have started out with "once upon a time"... An act of war (U.S. sub torpedoing the Kursk) would have had far greater ramifications than the writing off of debts or the making of loans.
It sounds like a fairy tale.

"The Japanese solders would die for the Emperor, which made them formidable. The U.S. Marines would die for each other, which made them invinceable"...Iwo Jima
Chuck Chesney
Registered User
Posts: 177
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2005 2:43 pm
Location: Preston, Idaho

Postby Dolphin » Tue Oct 04, 2005 12:22 am

Fairy Tale. The media never checks sources anymore do they?

Steve Reichmuth

Postby ThorDesign » Tue Oct 04, 2005 12:52 pm

Did Dan Rather write this???
Registered User
Posts: 347
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:16 pm
Location: OZ

Postby Walt » Tue Oct 04, 2005 6:33 pm

Hi all,
My first post here.. I do hope that this post is not an indication of intellegence level of posters LOL. The USS Toledo was in the Indian Ocean when the Kursk blew herself up.
If I remember correctly this is the show that was thrown together by a French Team..If it is then there goes your proof.
BTW the skipper of the Toledo is an acquaintance of mine.
Now what happened to the K-129 is another story??????
Only the crew of the 579 know for sure??
??? ???
Be Well
The Best Marine is a Submarine
User avatar
Registered User
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2005 5:40 pm
Location: Connecticut "Center of the Submarine Universe"

Postby Skip Asay » Tue Oct 04, 2005 9:04 pm

Is that the same French team that says 9/11 was actually a US plot?

Skip Asay
The U.S. of A - Land of the Free BECAUSE of the Brave
Skip Asay
Registered User
Posts: 256
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 11:04 pm
Location: Sanford, NC

Postby U812 » Tue Oct 04, 2005 11:31 pm

That's it Skip. and we never landed on the Moon either. HA!!

Poppy cock!


Postby TMSmalley » Wed Oct 05, 2005 7:56 am

Walt -
The color of your posts makes them very difficult to read. If you would like to change it here are the steps:

On the upper left side of this screen - you will see
Welcome (Your Name).

Right under it, there is "Your control panel" - Click on it.

Then click on "Personal Info".

Then you are taken to the "Your personal profile" page. (Say that ten times fast!)

Here is where you change your signature that appears when you post a message and several other items having to do with posting messages - including

the color of your posts.

There is a bar at the bottom of the Your Personal Profile Screen that says "Post Color".

If you click on the little triangle on the right side of the bar you can select a new color - I recommend something DARK

PS - all these steps makes it seem difficult but it took longer for me to type it than it will take you to change your post color!
Tim Smalley
User avatar
SubCommittee Member
Posts: 2488
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 8:58 am
Location: Edina, Minnesota USA

Postby Walt » Wed Oct 05, 2005 10:24 pm

Thank You Tim, I think this may be better. Funny my nickname in the Navy was Smiley....
Be Well
The Best Marine is a Submarine
User avatar
Registered User
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2005 5:40 pm
Location: Connecticut "Center of the Submarine Universe"

Return to Subs in the News

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users