Thursday, November 23, 2017

How Chile Is Aiding the Search for the Missing Argentine Submarine

Chile is providing some of the most sophisticated sensors in the search for an Argentine submarine that has been missing since Nov. 15. Chile's Navy sent one of its C-295 Persuader submarine hunters to the South Atlantic, where the U.S. Navy, Royal Navy, Brazil's navy and other nations have joined the search for ARA San Juan and its 44 crew members. A Chilean P-3 Orion sub hunter has been added to the search mission, Noticias FFAA Chile reported. Chile also has rushed the scientific research vessel Cabo de Hornos, which is equipped with ocean-floor scanners. The Navy offered the Type 23 frigate Lynch, which has the most advanced sonar in Latin America (the Thales S2087 active/passive sonar) and can carry a Cougar anti-sub helicopter, InfoDefensa reported. On its Twitter account, Chile's Air Force announced it is sending sonobuoys to drop in the search area. There are indications that an explosion occurred in the submarine, and the crew reported a problem with the batteries. If that's the case and the sub is destroyed, sonar is unlikely to pick up any trace of the San Juan. Submarines provide excellent stealth, which makes a rescue mission all the more difficult. The San Juan is one of three subs in Argentina's navy. The TR 1700-class boat was built in Germany and began operations in 1985.