Mk 60 Captor Mine

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The Mk 60 CAPTOR is the US Navy’s only deep water mine. The name CAPTOR is short for enCAPsulated TORpedo. The CAPTOR was the U.S. Navy’s standard anti-submarine mine during the Cold War, having enough computer power to detect the difference in acoustic signature between ships and submarines. When an enemy submarine passes close by, the passive sonar detects it and releases the torpedo, which tracks the sound until it contacts the submarine hull and explodes. Mine Mk 60 is a sophisticated anti-submarine warfare (ASW) moored mine which is designed to detect and classify submarines and release a modified Torpedo Mk 46 to acquire and attack submerged targets only.

This deep water mine is designed to be laid by aircraft or submarine, and is anchored to the ocean floor. The mine utilizes an influence firing device and is able to classify passing submarines. Its acoustic detection system is designed to seek hostile submarines, ignoring surface craft and friendly submarine acoustic signatures. The weapon lies dormant until a target is detected, at which time the torpedo swims out of its capsule to attack and destroy its target. As in other mines, the Mk 60 incorporates an arming-delay. The MK-60 can be deployed by air, submarine, or surface ship.

This weapon was developed by the Mine Division of the Naval Ordnance Laboratory, which is now located at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, Coastal Systems Station, Panama City, Florida. Because it can be converted to have some operational capability in littoral waters, a modification to CAPTOR is being considered as one of the options for the Littoral Sea Mine (LSM) program.

Technical Details

Mine Division of the Naval Ordnance Laboratory,
US Navy
Dimensions (m):
3.4\3.7L x 0.5D x 935\1077kg
None – anchored
Performance \ weaponry:
Launches Mk-46 homing torpedo
- 8,000 yards at 28+ knots
- 44.5kg (98 pound) high explosive warhead