Missing Argentine Submarine And Its 44 Sailors Found One Year Later

After disappearing a year ago, the ARA San Juan submarine and its 44 sailers were found off the coast of Argentina.
Donovan Alexander

In a bittersweet announcement this past Sunday, the Argentinian government announced the ARA San Juan submarine and its crew have been found, after disappearing for over a year ago.

The ARA San Juan submarine was a staple and well-known part of the Argentine Naval fleet, completing countless missions for the nation. Measuring around 60 meters the submarine contained 44 sailors when the vessel met its tragic end.

A Tragic Event

As the families of the fallen sailors mourned during the one year anniversary of the incident, the Argentine government announced that they have found the vessel 3,000 feet beneath the ocean's surface in waters off the Valdes Peninsula in Argentine Patagonia. Unfortunately, according to the Argentine Defense Minister, Oscar Aguad the government currently lacks the proper technology to recover the submarine at such a depth.

Missing Argentine Submarine And Its 44 Sailors Found One Year Later
Source: Armada Argentina


According to reports of the incident, ARA San Juan was headed back to its base South of Buenos Aires after completing a routine mission to Ushuaia. Mysteriously, the San Juan crew and submarine went silent on their return to base. The typical protocol for a situation like this is that if the crew or submarine itself is in any danger, it would rise to the surface and phone home.

ARA San Juan

The diesel-powered San Juan was found split in half, indicating there may have been an explosion on board. Right before the submarine disappeared water had entered the engines' snorkel and short-circuited one of the sub's batteries. This may have triggered a series of events that caused a “concentration of hydrogen”  leading to the explosion of the submarine.


After a long silence, the Argentine government brought together a search party that included manpower from the United States, Britain, Brazil and Chile, and a dozen other countries, but had no success.

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Fast forward to this past September, the Argentine government contracted the shipwreck finding U.S. company Ocean Infinity To aid in their search of the submarine. With their own fleet of submarines, they were able to find and take photos of the wreckage.

The Argentine government is working on next steps to put this tragic event to rest and bring peace to the families affected.

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