In April the next generation of Navantia’s submarine S-80 Plus will be implemented for the Spanish Navy with the launch of the submarine. Following recent delays due to the pandemic, Navantia will launch the first S-80 Plus, the Isaac Peral (S-81), at its Cartagena, Murcia facility in April. This important milestone in shipbuilding comes at a crucial time when several nations in the world, such as India with what is defined as the P-75 (I), have open competitions to equip themselves with conventional submarines equipped with a battery propulsion system or air-independent drive (IAP).
The commissioning of the plant in Cartagena, where the three brothers of the S-80 Plus series are currently in various construction phases, marks a milestone, as the S-80 is a clear candidate in the restricted area of submarine suppliers. It must be taken into account that the design and construction of submarines are, for obvious reasons, the most complex in the marine industry, so they are always subject to delays and increases in costs. A good example of this type of problem is the one that affects it in the macro program of the French company Naval Group, through which it has to supply the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) with 12 units of the so-called attack class.
Navantia has overcome one of the greatest engineering challenges in its history with the S-80 program, consolidating unique skills in conventional submersible design and building and updating its shipyard in Cartagena, the true heart of the S-80 Plus program Has. It should be remembered that, in addition to equipping the Navy with state-of-the-art submarines, the other aim of the program was to train the national industry to design and build a type of ship with high technical and technological complexity, the range of a few.
The delivery of the S-81 to the Navy is planned for the first quarter of 2023, the other three in June 2024, April 2026 and August 2027. We remember that a few months ago the AJEMA (Admiral Chief of the General Staff of The Armada ) found it appropriate to purchase a fifth submersible if you want to keep two on duty at all times. The hull closure ceremony included the constitution of the entire submarine in the absence of the outer hull and the installation of electronic systems, as well as after the installation of the main modules. This was followed by the completion of the armaments work and the start of the tests, the electrical tensioning, the dispatch of the batteries and finally the start and beginning of the port tests.
The S-80 Plus is equipped with an air-independent propulsion system, three-week diving autonomy, a low acoustic signature, excellent low-speed maneuverability, high automation, a state-of-the-art platform control and combat system, and attack systems on land, anti-ship missiles and mines, and electronic war equipment. (Julio Maz Sanz)
Photography: Isaac Peral in his building in Cartagena. (Photo Julio Maz)
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