The Brazilian Navy has taken delivery of Amazonas, the first of three Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) from BAE Systems at Portsmouth Naval Base, US, on Friday morning, June 29, as part of the £133 million deal it struck earlier this year.
The contract also contains a Manufacturing Licence to enable further vessels of the same class to be constructed in Brazil.
The three 90 metre vessels, originally constructed for the Government of Trinidad & Tobago, will provide the Brazilian Navy with enhanced maritime capability in the near term, pending the acquisition of future ships under its PROSUPER programme (Brazil’s current surface ship acquisition plan). The first two ships will be delivered in 2012 and the third will follow in early 2013.
The Ocean Patrol Vessels are capable of speeds in excess of 25 knots and weigh 2,200 tonnes fully loaded. With a 30mm cannon and two 25mm guns, as well as a helicopter flight deck and a rigid inflatable boat, the ships are ideal for performing maritime security roles in Brazil’s territorial waters. Designed to accommodate a crew of up to 70, with additional accommodation for 50 embarked troops or passengers and ample deck space for container storage, the vessels are also effective for search and rescue and disaster relief operations.
Shipbuilding Tribune Staff, July 4, 2012; Image: baesystems