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Montevideo, November 18th 2018 - 12:19 UTC

New hypothesis on the tragedy that befell Argentina's sub ARA San Juan

Tuesday, November 6th 2018 - 07:26 UTC
Full article 7 comments
An error in the internal ventilation valve could have caused the entry of seawater into the submarine's batteries, leading to a short-circuit An error in the internal ventilation valve could have caused the entry of seawater into the submarine's batteries, leading to a short-circuit

An “operation error” related to a ventilation valve, called 'Eco-19,' could explain the mystery of the tragedy that befell the ARA San Juan, the Argentine submarine that disappeared almost a year ago with 44-crew members on board. The new details emerged in a report currently being prepared by a commission of experts based inside the Argentine Defense Ministry.

 An error in the internal ventilation valve could have caused the entry of seawater into the submarine's batteries, leading to a short-circuit and the subsequent production of hydrogen, sources told the Buenos Aires Perfil newspaper.

According to the report, the battery may not have been closed up properly or had some issues functioning, either “mechanical, human or incidental” in nature.

The report is being prepared by submarine experts commissioned by the Ministry, including Navy rear admirals (RE) Adolfo Trama and Alejandro Kenny, and captain (RE) Jorge Bergallo, who is the father of Jorge Ignacio Bergallo, the second commander of ARA San Juan whose life was lost at sea.

However sources close to the investigation told Perfil that even though this is the most likely scenario, others hypotheses are still under consideration.

The report is set to be presented to the Defense Ministry in the upcoming days, and could be made public as soon as the minister Oscar Aguad allows it.

The ARA San Juan, a German-built TR-1700 class submarine, vanished almost one year ago, on November 15, 2017, as it was sailing from the southernmost port of Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego to the Mar del Plata submersibles base, after a patrol. A search for the vessel, or what remains of it, is ongoing.

 

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

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  • Chicureo

    There's little mystery. A corrupt government is responsible for the terrible loss. Shortly before the submarine vanished, it’s commander reported a battery malfunction on the vessel. It's established that Ferrostaal and battery maker EnerSys-Hawker paid bribes for a $6 million contract they received to replace 964 battery cells on the ARA San Juan. The battery cells were replaced instead of replacing the batteries themselves with new ones in an effort to save costs.

    Nov 06th, 2018 - 01:02 pm +3
  • Chicureo

    “Based on the official reports” means nothing from what has been clearly exposed as a mendacious coverup by the systemic corrupt Argentine Navy. Established fact: much of the surface fleet is completely unsafe for seagoing operations.

    Nov 06th, 2018 - 03:36 pm +3
  • Chicureo

    pgerman

    With all sincere respect to your informed post:

    Although I've retired from the navy, I still continue following Chilean military intel, including following quarterly assessments of the Argentine armada. Unfortunately the entire Argentine admiralty's honor is in question, sadly including Capitán Bergallo.

    Their blind historical ideology of “Confianza en la victoria, disciplina, y tres vivas a la patria” is incredibly hypocritical. They routinely endanger their own sailors each time they leave port, with poorly maintained vessels. The ARA SanJuan disaster was a criminal act by its own government, but they'll never admit it.

    Nov 06th, 2018 - 06:37 pm +3
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