“Rare Fully-Submersible Narco Submarine Captured In Colombia” –Covert Shores

Apparently fully submersible narco-sub. Source: Covert Shores

H. I. Sutton’s “Covert Shores” reports discovery of an apparently fully submersible narco-sub.

 “Early indications are that it is a fully-electric device. It may have been intended to be towed some of the way.”

The Covert Shores post has some original art work that better reveals the configuration along with more photos.

4 thoughts on ““Rare Fully-Submersible Narco Submarine Captured In Colombia” –Covert Shores

  1. Wow. That is an escalation of the technology used by drug traffickers.

    If this is more than a “one off”, the CG will be forced to get back into the ASW business.

    • @Malph,
      From what we know about this “sub”, we can be sure
      1. Its range is short. It is electrically powered with no internal combustion engine to charge the batteries or provide surface cruise. I doubt it could go 50 miles on its own power.
      2. It cannot go very deep. The hull is made of fiberglass and really does not look all that well made.

      So what is the concept of operation?
      —It is likely to be towed most of the way.
      —The ability to submerge is likely to be used to evade detection and boarding

      One of the earlier concepts was a positively buoyant towed “torpedo” that was unmanned with diving planes that kept the device submerged as long as it was moving forward. Trouble was, of course, that if the tow vessel stopped or cast off the tow line, the torpedo would float to the surface.

      This submarine could be towed, and if interdiction forces are approaching, the tow line can be cast off and the sub hide below the surface for several hours and move away from the tow vessel. After the interdiction asset has moved away, the sub would be easier to find and reattach the tow since there is a crew aboard that can communicate and assist in reattaching the tow.

      Towed arrays like the one being put on ASW versions of the LCS could help us find not only true subs like this one, but also the more common low profile vessels that are hard to detect visually or by radar. Their diesel engines could be detected passively and the hull detected by the active portion if kept in the surface duct.

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