Navantia has participated in the Underwater Defence & Security 2020 Conference.

The event was organised by defence leaders and took place in Southampton on 3-5 March.

The Cartagena shipyard engineering director Germán Romero Valiente made a presentation of the characteristics and capacities of the Spanish S80 Plus submarine, which is a unique product in the international market for its size and capacity due to its air-independent propulsion (AIP) system.

The UDS had record participation with attendees and lecturers from 36 countries. Navantia has been able to report on the progress of the S80 Plus submarine programme and its robust design that makes it suitable for export.

The first submarine in the series passed the hull closure milestone and is scheduled to be floated at the end of 2020, tested during 2021 and delivered to the Spanish Navy in 2022.

The AIP system was developed specifically for the project by the Spanish Abengoa (bioethanol reformer) and the American Collins Aerospace (fuel cells). The AIP system is much more versatile and efficient than others on the market.

Among other advantages, it uses agricultural bioethanol, available internationally. Fuel cell membranes require half the maintenance of the market standard and its efficiency allows it to operate underwater for periods of up to three weeks.

The S-80 Plus submarine is a last generation technological product, whose versatility allows the export. Currently, Navantia is offering a design based on the submarine to the Indian Navy for the P75(I) programme, design and construction of six units.

Navantia was also invited to a panel of experts where future trends in rescue and underwater rescue were discussed.