Noise detected in Atlantic not from missing Argentine submarine

Lester Mason
November 21, 2017

The search operation for the missing Argentine submarine, ARA San Juan, got a boost after a multinational search team of boats and planes joined the country's navy.

The noises were possibly from the ocean or marine life, Balbi said.

Gabriel Galeazzi, a naval commander, said the submarine had come up from the depths and reported an electrical malfunction before it disappeared 432km off the coast.

This type of problem is considered routine and the vessel's crew was reported safe, he added.

There are only two now in operation, and both are used by the Argentine Navy.

After a reasonable period of time without communication with the vessel, the Navy chose to activate the search protocol in the late afternoon of November 16.

On Saturday, seven reported communication attempts were initially believed to originate from the San Juan - but on Monday officials said the radio calls had not come from the missing sub.

US satellite communications company Iridium Communications Inc, which was brought in to help analyze the calls, said they did not originate with its device aboard the vessel and may have been from another satellite communications company's equipment.

"These ships are following the submarine's planned route, (and are) sweeping the whole area and we also have navy ships sweeping from north to south and from south to north", Galeazzi said.

"We're investigating the reasons for the lack of communication..."

The sub has already been missing for five days - meaning there could be as little as 48 hours to save the sailors.

The crew were thought to have several days of food supply, but - unlike nuclear-powered United Kingdom and U.S. submarines - the 66m (216ft) long ARA San Juan is diesel electric, meaning that it has a finite supply of fuel, food and oxygen.

If the sub is bobbing adrift on the surface and the hatch is open, it will have an available air supply and enough food for about 30 days, he said.

If it is immersed and can not raise a snorkel, oxygen may last about seven days.

With 44 crew members unaccounted for, Argentina is hoping that the Undersea Rescue Command (URC) can make a difference helping to move the search along.

They were joined by President Mauricio Macri: "We continue to deploy all available national and global resources" to find the submarine, he tweeted. "We welcome the help we have received to find them".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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