Mobility Aircraft Deploy to Deliver U.S. Navy’s Undersea Rescue Capabilities to Argentina
(Source: Air Mobility Command; issued Nov 19, 2017)
SCOTT AFB, Illinois --- Two C-17 Globemaster IIIs and a C-5M Super Galaxy are en-route to Argentina to deliver the U.S. Navy’s undersea rescue capabilities to aid in the search for the A.R.A. San Juan, an Argentine navy submarine, which went missing in the Southern Atlantic Nov. 15.

Mobility Airmen launched the C-17s, assigned to the 437th Airlift Wing at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina, and the C-5, assigned to the 60th Air Mobility Wing, Travis Air Force Base, California, from their home stations Nov. 18.

“The U.S. Air Force takes pride in always being ready and always there to assist those in need,” said Gen. Carlton D. Everhart II, Air Mobility Command commander. “Moments matter and the AMC team is committed to providing support to our Argentinian partners and friends.”


After departing their home stations, the aircraft flew to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California. From there, they will transport the first rescue system, the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and underwater intervention Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) to Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina. They are scheduled to arrive in Argentina Nov. 19.

The second rescue system, the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM) and supporting equipment will be transported via additional flights and is scheduled to arrive in Argentina early next week.

The U.S. government is supporting a request from the government of Argentina for international assistance to the ongoing search for the missing submarine and possible rescue opportunities once the vessel and crew are located, according to a press release written by U.S. Southern Command Nov. 18.

“We're trying to get very specialized equipment down to our partners in Argentina to assist with the search efforts," said Tech. Sgt. Ryan Kelly, 22nd Airlift Squadron C-5M Super Galaxy flight engineer. “These are the most motivating missions. There's people possibly (in distress) and we're trying to get this equipment on the other side of the world as fast as possible.”

“Our Airmen understand the importance of this mission and the impact,” added Everhart. “We are working closely with our joint service partners and our Argentinian friends to offer assistance and bring various capabilities and expertise to help wherever we can.”

The SRC is a McCann rescue chamber designed during World War II and still used today. SRC can rescue up to six persons at a time and reach a bottomed submarine at depths of 850 feet. The PRM can submerge up to 2,000 feet for docking and mating, with a submarine settled on the ocean floor up to 45-degree angle in both pitch and roll. The PRM can rescue up to 16 personnel at a time. Both assets are operated by two crewmembers and mate with the submarine by sealing over the submarine's hatch allowing Sailors to safely transfer to the rescue chamber.

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US Navy Deploys Unmanned Submersibles in Argentine Submarine Search
(Source: US Navy; issued Nov 19, 2017)
NAVAL STATION MAYPORT, Fla. --- The U.S. Navy has deployed unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) to join in the search for the Argentine navy's submarine, A.R.A. San Juan, in South Atlantic waters.

The equipment consists of one Bluefin 12D (Deep) UUV and three Iver 580 UUVs, which are operated by the U.S. Navy's recently-established Unmanned Undersea Vehicle Squadron 1, based in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The UUVs are uniquely capable to help in the search. Both types are capable of deploying quickly and searching wide areas of the ocean using Side Scan Sonar, a system that is used to efficiently create an image of large areas of the sea floor. The Bluefin 12D is capable of conducting search operations at 3 knots (3.5 mph) at a maximum depth of almost 5,000 feet for 30 hours, while the Iver 580s can operate at a depth of 325 feet, traveling at 2.5 knots (2.8 mph) for up to 14 hours.

The U.S. government is providing rapid response capabilities, including aircraft, equipment and personnel to assist the government of Argentina in its search for the missing submarine.

In addition to the UUVs, the U.S. has deployed aircraft to assist in the search, as well as underwater equipment specifically designed for submarine search and rescue.

One Navy P-8A aircraft is already in Argentina, where it joined a NASA P-3 research aircraft currently supporting the ongoing search efforts over the submarine's last known location.

U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) directed the deployment of this equipment and personnel to Argentina to support the country's request for international assistance aimed at locating the missing submarine and crew.

SOUTHCOM is one of the nation's six geographically-focused unified commands with responsibility for U.S. military operations in the Caribbean, Central America, and South America.

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Second US Navy P-8A Aircraft Joins Argentina's Submarine Search
(Source: US Navy; issued Nov 19, 2017)
NAVAL STATION MAYPORT, Fla. --- A second U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon multi-mission maritime aircraft will deploy to Bahia Blanca, Argentina, Nov. 19 to join an ongoing international search for the Argentinean Navy's submarine A.R.A. San Juan in Southern Atlantic waters.

The aircraft and a crew of 21 personnel will depart Jacksonville, Fla., and are expected to arrive in Argentina the same day.

One Navy P-8A aircraft is already in Argentina, where it joined a NASA P-3 research aircraft already supporting the ongoing search efforts over the submarine's last known location.

Additionally, the U.S. Navy's Undersea Rescue Command (URC), based in San Diego, Calif., is deploying two independent rescue systems that can be used to support underwater search and rescue missions, depending on various oceanic factors, including depth, floor conditions, currents and other safety considerations.

U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) directed the deployment of the P-8A aircraft, underwater rescue equipment and associated personnel to Argentina to support the country's request for international assistance aimed at locating the missing submarine and crew.

The P-8A Poseidon is the Navy's newest maritime, patrol and reconnaissance aircraft and is configured with state-of-the-art sensors and communications equipment, allowing it to support a wide range of missions over large bodies of water, including sub-surface search-and-rescue operations. It can reach an airspeed of 564 mph, has a ceiling of 41,000 feet and a range of 1,200 nautical miles with four hours on station, allowing it to loiter over search areas.

In April, SOUTHCOM deployed a P-8A Poseidon to Galeo Air Force Base in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where it took part in an internationally-supported search for The Republic of Korea ship, Stella Daisy, which tragically sank in the Southern Atlantic, off the western coast of Africa.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in October, P-8A Poseidon aircraft conducted overflight assessment missions, capturing images of conditions on the ground in Dominica to support U.S. foreign disaster assistance operations led by the U.S. Agency for International Development.

SOUTHCOM is one of the nation's six geographically-focused unified commands with responsibility for U.S. military operations in the Caribbean, Central America and South America.

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