T.Mariotti Shipyard, part of the Genova Industrie Navali Group, has been selected by the Italian Naval Armaments Directorate to build and deliver the Italian Navy’s new special and diving operations â€“ submarine rescue ship (SDO-SuRS), and a land-based dual-use hyperbaric centre in La Spezia. This unit, together with the new U212NFS submarines, will significantly contribute to the surveillance and control of critical underwater infrastructures, all in the broader context of what is nowadays defined as Maritime Security, also in a dual perspective.
The signing of the contract is expected by the summer and the new ship construction will engage the shipyard and local companies for four years, creating a considerable workload for the Ligurian realities, both in terms of employment and supply of new products and services. The first steel-cut is planned by end-2022 while the overall design, construction, fitting-out, and delivery programme will require four years with expected delivery in 2025. According to Janes, the MOD’s 2020â€“22 multiyear planning document indicates an allocated budget of EUR424 million for the programme.
The new Special and Diving Operations â€“ Submarine Rescue Ship (SDO-SuRS) vessel will replace the Italian Navy ITS Anteo (A 5309) submarine rescue ship, which has been in service for more than 40 years. Leonardo is involved in the project as supplier of command and control systems, while two companies from La Spezia, Carlo Agnese and Exa Engineering, are tasked for the restructuring of the logistic infrastructures that will house the hyperbaric simulator, a valuable technological asset for training and an integral part of the programme supply, which will be located at the La Spezia military arsenal.
The ship will be equipped, among other things, with an advanced command and control system, modern assets for search and rescue operations of national or allied submarines, a helicopters’ flight deck, and a complex integrated deep diving system including moon pool. In addition to submarine rescue, the new ship will be able to support deep saturation diving operations up to 300 m, and special forces operations. The unit will also be fitted with medical first aid and surgical facilities capable of providing assistance in â€‹â€‹disaster relief operations.