Capturing a video image of a US Navy aircraft searching
for the missing Argentine submarine in the Argentine Sea on
November 26, 2017
The Argentine military submarine San Juan sank in the
Atlantic, possibly following an explosion on board on
Wednesday, November 15 with its 44 crew members on board. Here
is what we know.
– Explosion –
The explosion thesis is the preferred track, although it
could not be found because the San Juan has not been located
It was detected on November 15 at 13:51 GMT by hydroacoustic
stations by the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty
A sudden explosion would explain the absence of activation
of the distress beacon and the complete breakdown of
Argentine submarine: probable explosion
– A damage causing the explosion? –
The commander of the submarine, Commander Pedro Martin
Fernandez, reported at his base a breakdown, a battery
In his latest message, on the morning of November 15 at
10:30 GMT, he informs that the problem is solved and that he
continues to the base of Mar del Plata, where he expected to
arrive on 19 or 20, despite the damage.
A submarine of this type is generally equipped with four
batteries of 50 tons each. They contain lead and sulfuric
In case of overheating, the batteries can release hydrogen,
which explodes on contact with oxygen.
„The entry of seawater by the ventilation system to the
number 3 battery pack caused a short circuit and a start of
fire (…) Bow batteries out of order. „, says the last message
sent by the submarine.
– Researches –
The navy announced Thursday the end of the search for
After having first crisscrossed a huge area of 500,000
km2, ships and planes are now focused on a smaller area around
the point of explosion communicated by the Otice to find the
In this zone, the depth of ocean waters ranges from 300 to
Two remote-controlled submarine vehicles will be on site
next week to try to detect the San Juan, with more
sophisticated technology, giving them the ability to dive up to
– A submersible built in 1983 –
Made in Germany by Thyssen Krupp in 1983, the 65-meter
submersible entered service in 1985 in the Argentine Navy. From
2008 to 2014, he underwent maintenance and modernization
operations at the Tandanor shipyard in Buenos Aires.
The Argentine Navy stated that it was „fully
Normally equipped with torpedoes, he was disarmed at the
time of his disappearance.