Russian Missile Strikes on Ukraine Electrical Network — Fruitless and Wasteful

Yet again a massive missile strike on Ukrainian electrical distribution network was reported. Throughout all of Ukraine, Russian missiles hit electrical distribution facilities. Some happen near the Polish border. During the attempted intercept of those missiles the Ukrainian air-defence units launched what seems like S-300 missiles, at least one of them landing in Polish territory, killing two Polish farmers.

Those massive strikes against power distribution network facilities started after the shameful Russian retreat from the Kharkov region. For about three months now, the strikes continued with various degrees on intensity.

Yet even now, after the last, massive strike (supposedly of dozens of long-range cruise missiles), all this had achieved is temporary blackouts. The reason is simple — the Ukrainian power distribution network is redundant, and the destroyed or damaged transformers and other auxiliary systems. Those serve to decrease or increase the voltage before feeding the national and regional electrical distribution networks from the power generating facilities, or from those facilities to consumers.

The Ukrainian national electrical grid uses 750kV powerlines to balance electricity supply on a national or international levels. The electrical power plants produce much lower voltages, but they are being transformed to higher voltages in order to reduce power loses during the transmission over the national power grid. For that, step-up transformers are used.

Then the power is distributed to regional or local consumers, it is being transformed back to lower voltages. 330kV, 110kV, etc., up until the usual voltages of 220V or 400V for one or three phases. Industrial facilities can consume higher voltages, but that only means that they don’t use the final stages of step-down transformers, as the private households do.

In addition to those step-up and step-down transformers, distribution networks also use automatic control facilities, which regulate the load between different segments of upper and lower levels of the electrical distribution network. Automatic protection systems to prevent overloads and non-standard voltages is also used.

The Russian tactic was mainly to destroy or damage those transformers. They are relatively much easier to repair or replace. They could also be substituted by redundant back-up facilities, or the electricity flow can be rerouted through other segments of the network. The bottom line is, all Russians have achieved so far is the temporary blackouts, which are quickly repaired.

If the Russian goal was to destroy or heavily cripple Ukrainian ability to use electricity, then this plan has failed. Only by constant strikes, using hundreds and thousands of stand-off munition like drones or missiles, those temporary blackouts could be sustained. Of course, this is stupid.

I’ve seen some people talk about those transformers being unique and very hard to replace, so after the backups and spares would be exhausted, the entire network will start to collapse. Yet, those people apparently disregard Western ability to supply such transformer units to Ukraine, or Ukraine abilities to start mass producing those units.

On the over hand, if all those hundreds and thousands of missiles and drones would to strike power plants, then that would require many months, or more probably, years of heavy investments and building to replace. And, naturally, there are much less power generation facilities than there are power distribution subsystems.

We can see that Ukraine, using only artillery and rockets, most of them being unguided, managed to shut down Ukraine’s most powerful nuclear power plant. Amagine what would happen if they had strategic cruise missiles of Kh-101 variety, Kalibr or Iskander-K missiles. Russia would enter the medieval era pretty soon.

Yet the genius supreme commander Simpleton Simpletonovich Rasputin continues to play his games of “lose the war to weak opponent, even if everything is going your way”. Hundreds, if not thousands, of strategic-level missiles are being disposed without any real consequences. While hundreds of primitive, extremely overpriced (if Sky News report to be believed) drones are being purchased from Iran, which have no strategic value.

P.S. The usual, flow-of-consciousness rumbling

I dislike when people talk about treason then faced with any little detail which contradicts their own personal paradigm. And yet, then I see again and again that Russia wastes its superiority on fruitless endeavors, while constantly being under the threat of some of NATO powers directly joining the war, I see no other, more suitable way to describe it, but as treason, or at least as fundamental betrayal of the country and its people.

It is being said that every nation has the government it deserves. I refuse to believe Russian people are so stupid, incompetent and corrupt. But assuming they are, maybe it is time to return to old practice of bringing leaders from outside of Russia. Gorbachev, Yeltsin, Putin — they seem initially to have some good intentions, but in the end all they do is weaken the country and humiliate its population, forcing some of its most productive and smart people to flee abroad in despair.


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