The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) launched a dedicated portal for submarine safety information (SSIP) which will provide real-time information to submarines at sea which includes seismic activities and movement of deep sea oil rigs and very large crude carriers.
The portal was launched by Navy chief Rear-Admiral (RADM) Lai Chung Han. The increased number of regional submarine operators and traffic due to merchant vessels with deeper draughts and larger trawlers are posing a serious threat to underwater safety, Han said.
According to a news release of the Singapore Ministry of Defence Friday, “This new dedicated portal for underwater safety at the IFC (Information Fusion Centre) will provide submarine operating centres and submarines at sea with real-time tracking of deep draft commercial vessels and hazards to prevent underwater accidents. These include seismic activities, and real-time movement of deep-sea oil rigs and very large crude carriers.”
Pointedly, there has been a spurt in the number of submarines in the Asia-Pacific region as there are over 200 submarines in this area and the number is expected to grow to over 250 by 2030. Singapore has four submarines, with another four slated for delivery from 2021.
Colonel David Foo, Commanding Officer of the Submarine Squadron said, “The portal will help submarines navigate amid unmanned underwater vehicles and warship exercises out at sea.”
The free portal, touted as the world’s first, will be housed at the RSN’s Information Fusion Centre at Changi Naval Base, and builds on the existing database at the centre.
Feedback about the portal will be collated over a year, and the final version will be out in 2019. Other countries are invited to contribute relevant information to the portal.