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Russian combat swimmers use a German-made extreme high-performance diving scooter for professional purposes. This was revealed during large-scale military exercises that took place at the beginning of September, and was conducted by the Russian military.

As reported by the Russian television, the exercises took place in the Mediterranean, and more than 25 warships and around 30 planes took part in the drills. Footage of the exercises showcased how Russian combat swimmers have practiced beach landing from a Kilo-class diesel-electric submarine.

Russia Special Forces brought their Germany origin Black Shadow DPVs (Diver Propulsion Vehicles) along to the military exercise in the East Mediterranean.

Russia is not the only country who uses the German-made Rotinor Black Shadow (RBS) in its Special Forces. In fact, RBS are widely used and represent a major player in the market with over 20 customers. In 2016, the Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported that the first contract with the Russian armed forces was signed in 2013, according to defense-blog.com.


Two versions of the underwater Black Shadow vehicle are supplied for special forces units: one intended for two combat swimmers, and the other for four. The vehicle moves at a speed of 10 km/h, and the electric motor can operate autonomously for three hours.

The RBS is ideal for underwater missions and special operations as it can be steered down to a depth of 60 meters. Additionally, its powerful motor performance of 8 HP is controlled by 10 power levels. Therefore, the operator can alternate individually between slow or high-speed maneuvers through the water.

The RBS is characterized by great agility in the water due to its hydrodynamic design, and all steering and diving maneuvers are carried out simply by shifting the weight of the body. A special harness allows the operator to easily control the vehicle, which weighs over 70 kg.