OLDMELDRUM, Scotland — JFD, the underwater capability provider serving the commercial and defense diving markets and part of James Fisher and Sons plc, has successfully delivered the second of two third-generation submarine rescue systems to the Indian Navy. The delivery represents a significant milestone in the provision of a comprehensive submarine rescue capability that will enhance safety for submariners.
Under a $243.4 million contract, JFD is providing two complete third-generation fly-away submarine rescue systems to the Indian Navy, including deep-search-and-rescue vehicles (DSRV), launch-and-recovery systems equipment, transfer-under-pressure systems, and all logistics and support equipment required to operate the service. The contract also includes a 25-year all-encompassing maintenance support service.
The equipment was designed, manufactured, integrated and tested by JFD prior to shipping to India, with the second system expected to arrive in country in January. The system will be mobilized onto the rescue vessel in order to begin a full series of sea acceptance trials, with JFD personnel remaining in country to work in close partnership with the Indian Navy to complete comprehensive training on the safe operation of the system.
“JFD is pleased to have successfully completed the delivery of the second advanced submarine rescue system to the Indian Navy,” said Giovanni Corbetta, JFD managing director. “The third-generation system represents a step-change in real-world submarine rescue capability and has been specifically designed to provide a comprehensive and highly capable submarine rescue service whilst ensuring the system is as quick and simple to mobilize as possible to maximize the chances of a successful rescue.
“Protecting the lives of submariners is the foundation of our business, and our teams of experts have worked tirelessly to ensure the seamless delivery of all of the submarine rescue systems JFD operates across the globe, continually driving the highest standards in safety,” Corbetta said. “The active participation of the Indian Navy throughout the build, acceptance and ongoing trials of the two systems trials is key to conducting safe and efficient operations in support of submarine rescue to allow them the ability to respond effectively to an emergency when a submarine is in distress.”
Having completed comprehensive factory acceptance testing which was signed off by the Indian Navy, the second system has been delivered to the customer just eight months after the first system. All of the technologies utilized in JFD’s third-generation system are proven in service, and while innovative in arrangement, the methodology is built on tried and tested approaches and therefore requires little shift in operating doctrine, existing procedures, training and crewing competencies.
The Indian Navy formally inducted its first DSRV into service at a ceremony in Mumbai on Dec. 12, meaning that the Indian Navy has now joined a select league of nations with the capability to search, locate and provide rescue to distressed submarines.
“The DSRV (induction) is a landmark event and it marks the culmination of years of focused efforts of the Navy in acquiring niche submarine rescue capability,” said Adm. Sunil Lanba, chief of the Naval Staff for the Indian Navy. “With these capabilities, the Indian Navy has joined the select league of navies that operate such assets.”