The CAPTOR is the United States Navy
United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

's primary anti-submarine naval mine
Naval mine
A naval mine is a self-contained explosive device placed in water to destroy surface ships or submarines. Unlike depth charges, mines are deposited and left to wait until they are triggered by the approach of, or contact with, an enemy vessel...

. This deep-water mine is laid by ship, aircraft or submarine, and is anchored to the ocean floor. When its sonar
Sonar is a technique that uses sound propagation to navigate, communicate with or detect other vessels...

 detects a hostile submarine, the CAPTOR launches a Mark 46 torpedo
Mark 46 torpedo
Designed to attack high-performance submarines, the Mark 46 torpedo is the backbone of the U.S. Navy's lightweight ASW torpedo inventory, and is the current NATO standard. These aerial torpedoes, such as the Mark 46 Mod 5, are expected to remain in service until the year 2015...


The name CAPTOR is short for enCAPsulated TORpedo. The CAPTOR was the U.S. Navy's standard anti-submarine mine during the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

, having enough computer power to detect the difference in acoustic signature
Acoustic signature
Acoustic signature is used to describe a combination of acoustic emissions of ships and submarines.-Contributing factors:The acoustic signature is made up of a number of individual elements...

 between ships and submarine
A submarine is a watercraft capable of independent operation below the surface of the water. It differs from a submersible, which has more limited underwater capability...

s. When an enemy submarine passes close by, the passive sonar
Sonar is a technique that uses sound propagation to navigate, communicate with or detect other vessels...

 detects it and releases the torpedo, which tracks the sound until it contacts the submarine hull and explodes.
  • Primary Function: Air and ship-launched lightweight torpedo
  • Type: Aircraft, ship or submarine laid magnetically moored mine
  • Contractor: Alliant Techsystems
  • Detection System: Reliable acoustic path (RAP) sound propagation
  • Guidance System; Homing mode - Active or passive/active acoustic homing
  • Launch/search mode - Snake or circle search
  • Power Plant: Two-speed, reciprocating external combustion; Mono-propellant (Otto fuel II
    Otto fuel II
    Otto fuel II is a monopropellant used to drive torpedoes and other weapon systems. It is not related to the Otto cycle.-Properties:This distinct-smelling, reddish-orange, oily liquid is a mixture of three synthetic substances: propylene glycol dinitrate , 2-nitrodiphenylamine, and dibutyl...

    ) fueled
  • Dimensions:
    • Aircraft/Ship laid: 530 mm by 3.68 m (21 by 145 in)
    • Submarine laid: 530 mm by 3.35 m (21 by 132 in)
  • Weight:
    • Air or Ship laid: 1077 kg (2370 lb)
    • Submarine laid: 935 kg (2056 lb)
  • Depth Range: Greater than 1,200 ft (370 meters); Officially: "Up to 3000 feet (900 meters)"
  • Range: 8,000 yards
  • Speed: Greater than 28 knots (32 mph, 52 km/h)
  • Explosives: 44 kg (98 lb) of PBXN-103 high explosive (bulk charge) torpedo
    The modern torpedo is a self-propelled missile weapon with an explosive warhead, launched above or below the water surface, propelled underwater towards a target, and designed to detonate either on contact with it or in proximity to it.The term torpedo was originally employed for...

  • Date Deployed: 1979

External links

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