On April 22nd, the S-81 Isaac Peral will be launched, the first of the four last generation submarines that Navantia is building for the Spanish Navy at its facilities in Cartagena. It is one of the major milestones of the program after the closure of the helmet that we participated in in late 2019, not long before the pandemic has robbed us of the opportunity to attend a variety of events in person. With the launch of the S-81, the submarine will leave the Navantia-covered facilities for good, ending the construction phase and starting the Navy’s port and sea testing prior to its delivery, which is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023.
The other three submarines in the program will arrive in June 2024, April 2026 and August 2027, carrying out the most ambitious shipbuilding program in the history of Spain and its prime contractor Navantia. The marine will thus have 4 modern submersible boats equipped with the latest technologies and an Air Independent Propulsion System (AIP), also developed in Spain. Enjoy high autonomy, advanced weapon systems, as well as state-of-the-art communication, sensor and command and control systems, and ground support systems, including simulators.
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. In this sense, Spain has managed to enter the selected group of countries capable of designing and building modern submarines and consolidating areas of knowledge such as materials technology, hydrodynamics, mechanics or acoustics, centered on a specialized industrial Base and are able to be installed mainly around Cartagena.
In the Murcia region, for example, it accounts for 10 percent of industrial employment, which corresponds to a contribution to GDP (gross domestic product) of around 200 million euros, which corresponds to 4.7 percent of this area. In addition to the budget of almost 4,000 million euros, there are 6.4 million hours of engineering, more than 2,100 companies, of which more than 850 are Spanish. Many have developed state-of-the-art dual technologies that can be applied to other sectors and help create a modern industrial fabric. More than 2,000 derivative jobs have been created annually, both internally and in the auxiliary industry, and up to 7,000 including the supplier network.
The S-80 will also position itself in the international market in order to participate in current and future tenders, for example the Indian P-75 (I) program, in the hope of repeating the export successes of the F-100 frigates. notably the case of Australia, whose Royal Navy is currently debating the future of the submarine program they originally wagered on.
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