HomeMediaSpecial CoverageU.S. Military Support to Argentina Submarine Search

U.S. Military Support to Argentina Submarine Search

The U.S. Navy is supporting international efforts to locate the missing Argentine Navy submarine A.R.A. San Juan in Southern Atlantic waters.

Recent Photos

A ship is loaded with the cable-controlled Undersea Recovery Vehicle.
171204-N-HS500-003 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Dec. 4, 2017). The R/V Atlantis, a U.S. Navy owned research vessel, is loaded with the cable-controlled Undersea Recovery Vehicle (CURV-21) in Comodoro Rivadavia Dec. 4, 2017. The CURV is designed to meet the U.S. Navy’s deep ocean salvage requirements down to a maximum ...More
A cargo container is hoisted onto a truck bed.
171201-N-HS500-032 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Dec. 1, 2017). The U.S. Navy cable-controlled Undersea Recovery Vehicle (CURVE-21) is offloaded at the Comodoro Rivadavia airport Dec. 1, 2017. The CURVE will be used in support of the Argentinean Navy search and rescue efforts of the ARA San Juan (S-42) (U.S. Navy phot ...More
Cargo is unloaded from a military aircraft.
171201-N-HS500-031 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Dec. 1, 2017). The U.S. Navy cable-controlled Undersea Recovery Vehicle (CURVE-21) is offloaded at the Comodoro Rivadavia airport Dec. 1, 2017. The CURVE will be used in support of the Argentinean Navy search and rescue efforts of the ARA San Juan (S-42) (U.S. Navy phot ...More
workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module.
171126-N-HS500-001 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 26, 2017) Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and Argentine construction workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRDRS) which operates the deep diving rescue vehicle, the Pressurized Rescu ...More
Pilots fly a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
171122-N-IT277-015 Argentina (Nov. 22, 2017) A reporter from Reuters films pilots from Patrol Squadron (VP) 10, Red Lancers, on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft. The Red Lancers are in Argentina as part of a detachment from Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 11 that has been assisting the Argentine military in locating ...More
Argentine Navy Capt. Perez Kuhn thanks the remaining crew of Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and the departing Sailors prior to the motor vessel  Sophie Siem getting underway.
171126-N-TY130-001 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 26, 2017) Argentine Navy Capt. Perez Kuhn thanks the remaining crew of Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and the departing Sailors prior to the motor vessel Sophie Siem getting underway. The Sophie Siem carries the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRD ...More
A US Navy and Argentine navy officer talk.
171124-N-TY130-125 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 24, 2017) Lt. Damian Gutierrez, Argentine Navy Submarine Officer and Lt. Cdr. Commander Wendell Holmes, undersea rescue command engineer, discuss the modifications of the motor vessel Sophie Siem necessary for the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM). Undersea Rescue Co ...More
Sailors the bridge of the Norwegian construction support vessel Skandi Patagonia.
171124-N-TW634-170 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Nov. 24, 2017) Cmdr. Michael Eberlein, commanding officer of Undersea Rescue Command, and Chief Information Systems Technician (Submarines) Matthew Johnson, assigned to Undersea Rescue Command (URC), stand watch with fellow U.S. Sailors and Argentine sailors on the bridge of the Norwe ...More
The motor vessel Sophie Siem gets underway from Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina
171126-N-TY130-403 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 26, 2017) The motor vessel Sophie Siem gets underway from Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina with Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRDRS) which operates the deep diving rescue vehicle, the Pressurized Rescue Module ...More
Workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM).
171126-N-HS500-003 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 26, 2017) Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and Argentine construction workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRDRS) which operates the deep diving rescue vehicle, the Pressurized Rescu ...More
A Sailor coordinates tactics on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
171122-N-IT277-012 Argentina (Nov. 22, 2017) Lieutenant Junior Grade Jimmy Boyd, from Patrol Squadron (VP) 10, Red Lancers, coordinates tactics on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft. The Red Lancers are in Argentina as part of a detachment from Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 11 that has been assisting the Argentine m ...More
Argentine sailors retrieve side scanning sonar equipment on board a ship.
171123-N-TW634-063 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Nov. 23, 2017) Argentine sailors retrieve side scanning sonar equipment from Undersea Rescue Command on board the Norwegian construction support vessel Skandi Patagonia. Undersea Rescue Command, the U.S. Navy's only submarine rescue unit, is mobilized to support the Argentine governme ...More
Workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM).
171126-N-HS500-005 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 26, 2017) Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and Argentine construction workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRDRS) which operates the deep diving rescue vehicle, the Pressurized Rescu ...More
A Sailor operates a radar on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
171122-N-IT277-010 Argentina (Nov. 22, 2017) Aviation Warfare Operator Matthew Baker, from Patrol Squadron (VP) 10, Red Lancers, operates a radar on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft. The Red Lancers are in Argentina as part of a detachment from Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 11 that has been assisting the Argentine ...More
Sailors load sonobouys onto a P8-A Poseidon aircraft.
171124-N-IT277-039 Bahia Blanca, ARGENTINA (Nov. 23, 2017) Members of the Argentine Navy help Sailors from the ‘Mad Foxes’ of Patrol Squadron (VP) 5 and the ‘Pelicans’ of VP-45 load sonobouys onto a P8-A Poseidon aircraft. Sailors from VP-5 and VP-45 are currently in Bahia Blanca as part of a detachment from Commande ...More
A ship prepares for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System
171122-N-TY130-007 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 22, 2017) Undersea Rescue Command (URC) prepares for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System (SRDRS) which operates the deep diving rescue vehicle, the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM). Undersea Rescue Command, the U.S. Navy's only s ...More
A technician performs maintenance on an unmanned underwater vehicle.
171122-N-TW634-057 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Nov. 22, 2017) Fire Control Technician 1st Class Alvin Miller, assigned to Unmanned Undersea Vehicle Squadron 1 (UUVRON 1), performs maintenance on a Bluefin-12D, an unmanned underwater vehicle, on board the Norwegian construction support vessel Skandi Patagonia. Undersea Rescue Comma ...More
Technicians perform maintenance on an unmanned underwater vehicle.
171122-N-TW634-069 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Nov. 22, 2017) Fire Control Technician 1st Class Alvin Miller, right, Chief Fire Control Technician Brian Vinella, top left, and Chief Electronics Technician (Submarine Navigation) Casey Smith, bottom left, all assigned to Unmanned Undersea Vehicle Squadron 1 (UUVRON 1), perform maint ...More
Officers are interviewed by reporters.
171120-N-TW634-065 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 20, 2017) Cmdr. Michael Eberlein, commanding officer of Undersea Rescue Command (URC), and Capt. Gabriel Attis, the Argentine search and rescue coordinator, address the Argentine press. Undersea Rescue Command, the U.S. Navy's only submarine rescue unit, mobilized ...More
Argentine rescue commanders discuss current operations with U.S. Navy officers.
COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 20, 2017) - Argentine rescue commanders discuss current operations with Cmdr. Michael Eberlein, commanding officer of Undersea Rescue Command (URC). URC is based in San Diego and is mobilizing two rescue assets to assist in search and rescue efforts for Argentine submarine A.R.A. San ...More
U.S. Navy and Argentine navy officers hold a discussion.
COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 20, 2017) - Argentine rescue commanders discuss current operations with Cmdr. Michael Eberlein, commanding officer of Undersea Rescue Command (URC). URC is based in San Diego and is mobilizing two rescue assets to assist in search and rescue efforts for Argentine submarine A.R.A. San ...More
U.S. Sailors and Argentines load submarine rescue equipment onto a Norwegian construction support vessel
171120-N-TW634-026 COMODORO RIVADAVIA, Argentina (Nov. 20, 2017) Sailors from Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and Argentines load submarine rescue equipment onto the Norwegian construction support vessel Skandi Patagonia. Undersea Rescue Command, the U.S. Navy's only submarine rescue unit, mobilized to support the Argent ...More
Official U.S. Navy file photo of a Bluefin-21.
Official U.S. Navy file photo of a Bluefin-21. 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. N ...More
Official U.S. Navy file photo of the Pressurized Rescue Module.
Official U.S. Navy file photo of the Pressurized Rescue Module. The U.S. Navy has ordered its Undersea Rescue Command (URC) based in San Diego to deploy to Argentina Nov. 18, to support the South American nation's ongoing search for the Argentinean Navy submarine A.R.A. San Juan in the Southern Atlantic.
People push a container onto a cargo plane.
SAN DIEGO (Nov. 18, 2017) - Undersea Rescue Command (URC) based in San Diego mobilizes to support their ongoing search for the Argentine navy submarine ARA San Juan in the South Atlantic, Nov. 18. URC is deploying two rescue assets, the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM). The URC Sai ...More
Cargo is loaded onto a military airplane.
SAN DIEGO (Nov. 18, 2017) - Undersea Rescue Command (URC) based in San Diego mobilizes to support their ongoing search for the Argentine navy submarine ARA San Juan in the South Atlantic, Nov. 18. URC is deploying two rescue assets, the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM). The URC Sai ...More
A Submarine Rescue Chamber is hoisted off a truck.
SAN DIEGO (Nov. 18, 2017) - Undersea Rescue Command (URC) based in San Diego mobilizes the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) to support their ongoing search for the Argentine navy submarine ARA San Juan in the South Atlantic, Nov. 18. URC is deploying two rescue assets, the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and the Pressuriz ...More
A ship is loaded with the cable-controlled Undersea Recovery Vehicle.
A cargo container is hoisted onto a truck bed.
Cargo is unloaded from a military aircraft.
workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module.
Pilots fly a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
Argentine Navy Capt. Perez Kuhn thanks the remaining crew of Undersea Rescue Command (URC) and the departing Sailors prior to the motor vessel  Sophie Siem getting underway.
A US Navy and Argentine navy officer talk.
Sailors the bridge of the Norwegian construction support vessel Skandi Patagonia.
The motor vessel Sophie Siem gets underway from Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina
Workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM).
A Sailor coordinates tactics on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
Argentine sailors retrieve side scanning sonar equipment on board a ship.
Workers prepare the motor vessel Sophie Siem for the installation of the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM).
A Sailor operates a radar on a P-8a Poseidon aircraft.
Sailors load sonobouys onto a P8-A Poseidon aircraft.
A ship prepares for the installation of the Submarine Rescue Diving and Recompression System
A technician performs maintenance on an unmanned underwater vehicle.
Technicians perform maintenance on an unmanned underwater vehicle.
Officers are interviewed by reporters.
Argentine rescue commanders discuss current operations with U.S. Navy officers.
U.S. Navy and Argentine navy officers hold a discussion.
U.S. Sailors and Argentines load submarine rescue equipment onto a Norwegian construction support vessel
Official U.S. Navy file photo of a Bluefin-21.
Official U.S. Navy file photo of the Pressurized Rescue Module.
People push a container onto a cargo plane.
Cargo is loaded onto a military airplane.
A Submarine Rescue Chamber is hoisted off a truck.
Latest Imagery from Argentina Sub Support

Overview of U.S. Military Support

Updated Dec. 4, 2017

Transition to Search and Recovery

Two U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon aircraft, the Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and the Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM) from the Undersea Rescue Command that assisted Argentina in the search for Argentine submarine, ARA San Juan, completed operations Nov 30. (See Press Release)

Unmanned Recovery Vehicle (CURV) 21

Continuing with the transition of operations to search and recovery, the U.S. Navy deployed the Cable operated Unmanned Recovery Vehicle (CURV) 21 to support the ongoing Argentine search efforts onboard R/V Atlantis.

The CURV-21 is a 6,400-pound Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) that is designed to meet the U.S. Navy's deep ocean salvage requirements down to a maximum depth of 20,000 feet of seawater, and is due to arrive in Argentina, Dec. 1.

Unmanned Underwater Vehicles

The U.S. Navy has deployed unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) to join in the search. 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.

Oceanographic Research Vessel R/V Atlantis

R/V Atlantis, an oceanographic research ship under charter with the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research, is taking part in the search. The ship brings advanced precision navigation, seafloor mapping sonar and satellite communications to the effort.


Previous Support

From Nov. 17 - 30, two U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon multi-mission maritime aircraft assisted in search efforts. The P-8A 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.

From Nov. 18 - 30, two independent rescue assets from URC were deployed to assist:

  • The Submarine Rescue Chamber (SRC) and underwater intervention Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV). 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 Pressurized Rescue Module (PRM) and supporting equipment. 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.

SOUTHCOM FOCUS AREAS