‘The phrase ‘The hunt is on!’ was widely echoed online as users shared a screenshot from an air traffic monitoring app, focusing on heightened activities along the southern coast of the United States. According to reports from BulgarianMilitary.com, the Russian Navy has positioned vessels carrying hypersonic Zircon and Kalibr missiles in Cuba. This development has drawn close scrutiny from the Pentagon, particularly towards the movements of the Russian fleet, including the Yasen-M-class nuclear submarine Kazan.

In response, the U.S. Navy deployed its P-8 Poseidon aircraft, renowned for its anti-submarine capabilities, as reported by U.S. Civil Defense News X. The P-8 Poseidon is actively patrolling the skies above Florida, tasked with locating any potential Russian submarine threat near the Cuban coast armed with Kalibr-M missiles capable of reaching 4,500 kilometers, echoing memories of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

To bolster these efforts, experts note that the U.S. is collaborating closely with the Royal Canadian Navy, which has also launched Lockheed P-3 Orion aircraft. These aircraft are engaged in coordinated search patterns, as seen in screenshots from air traffic tracking apps, though official results from the joint operation have yet to be disclosed.

Earlier reports from BulgarianMilitary.com indicated the presence of Russian vessels including the frigate “Admiral Gorshkov” and the nuclear submarine “Kazan” in Cuban waters, viewed by many as a show of strength amidst geopolitical tensions. Despite the proximity to U.S. forces, the response from Washington has been characterized as vigilant but measured, mindful of potential implications for Russia’s allies.

The deployment of Zircon missile systems aboard these vessels marks a strategic move by the Kremlin, seemingly aimed at assessing international responses, including Cuba’s stance, despite its neutral position on Russia’s actions elsewhere. The Kazan Yasen-M-class submarine, part of Russia’s advanced naval capabilities, underscores the complexity and potential ramifications of this military manoeuvre.

The Kazan Yasen-M class submarine is capable of diving to depths of approximately 600 meters [1,968 feet], enabling it to operate effectively in deep-sea environments, which enhances its stealth and survivability.

When submerged, the Kazan Yasen-M class submarine displaces around 13,800 tons, showcasing its sturdy construction and extensive complement of systems and weaponry.

Typically, the crew of the Kazan Yasen-M class submarine consists of about 90 officers and enlisted personnel. This relatively small crew size is facilitated by the high level of automation and advanced onboard systems.

The Kazan Yasen-M class submarine is designed for diverse and formidable missions, including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, and land-attack missions. Its advanced sensors and stealth features make it a potent platform for intelligence gathering and surveillance.

Equipped with advanced sonar arrays, electronic warfare systems, and integrated combat management systems, the Kazan Yasen-M class submarine significantly enhances situational awareness and combat effectiveness.

Its armament includes a variety of weapons such as torpedoes, cruise missiles, and anti-ship missiles. Notably, it is capable of launching Kalibr and Oniks cruise missiles with high precision against both naval and ground targets.

The deployment of P-8 Poseidon and P-3 Orion aircraft off the coast of Florida is strategic, leveraging their advanced sonar capabilities for detecting underwater threats. These aircraft utilize active and passive sonar systems to detect submarines, along with sonobuoys for further detection and tracking capabilities.

Magnetic anomaly detection (MAD) is another technique employed by these aircraft, which detects disturbances in the Earth’s magnetic field caused by submarines’ metal hulls. Both aircraft also utilize electronic intelligence (ELINT) and signals intelligence (SIGINT) systems to intercept and analyze electronic emissions from submarines, providing valuable intelligence on their activities.

Infrared and optical sensors further enhance detection capabilities, particularly near the water’s surface, while data fusion and advanced algorithms integrate information from multiple sensors to accurately identify and track submarines in complex environments.