IDF unveils navy tugboats designed to service Dolphin submarines

The boats are part of the co-ed Ma'agan (Anchorage) unit, based at Haifa naval base.

July 16, 2015 19:06
1 minute read.
Navy receives new tugboat specially designed to move the new generation German Dolphin submarines

Navy receives new tugboat specially designed to move the new generation German Dolphin submarines in a ceremony held at the start of July at Haifa Naval Base. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

The Israel Navy this month introduced two new tugboats specially designed to bring second- generation Dolphin-class submarines to their new docking stations, a naval officer said on Wednesday.

Cmdr. Alon Friedman, who heads the Israel Navy’s Engineering Department, said the tugboats were built by Israel Shipyards from plans created by Spanish naval architects Cintranaval- Defcar according to Israeli specifications.

The vessels come equipped with Azimuth stern drive propulsion systems, made by Rolls Royce, Friedman explained, enabling them to turn 360 degrees for enhanced control, as they pilot the submarines to their docking station at Haifa Port.

“The compressor on board the tugboats can push in any direction, giving them ultimate maneuverability,” Friedman said.

The submarines maneuver in very limited space, needing the tugboats to help them reach the docks. They push the subs from the side with 15-tons of pushing power, Friedman said.

The tugboats, which can also service all other naval platforms, are staffed by a skipper, a chief, and a number of sailors, depending on the nature of the mission. They are part of the co-ed Ma’agan (Anchorage) unit, based at Haifa Naval Base.

By 2020, the Israel Navy should have six German-manufactured Dolphin submarines; three first-generation vessels and three second generation.

The first of the new submarines, the INS Tanin, arrived at Haifa Port in September 2014. The INS Rahav is due to arrive this year.

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