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Sea Platforms

Brazil prepares to launch first Riachuelo-class submarine

06 December 2018
The first-of-class is scheduled to be launched in mid-December. Source: Victor Barreira

The first-of-class Riachuelo-class (Modified Scorpene-class) S-BR diesel-electric submarine Riachuelo (S40) is scheduled to be launched on 14 December at the Itaguaí Naval Complex in Itaguaí, where the ship was built by Itaguaí Construções Navais (ICN).

The boat is currently at the Estaleiro de Construção (ESC) assembly hall and will be moved to TTS Syncrolift's ship lift to be lowered into the water on the launch date.

The ship will then spend another estimated two years undergoing pier tests and sea trials. It is scheduled for delivery to the Brazilian Navy in 2020.

The S-BR is built in five sections. Riachuelo bow's third and fourth sections were constructed in Cherbourg, France. The remaining three boats - Humaitá (S41), Tonelero (S42), and Angostura (S43) - are being fully constructed in Brazil.

Humaitá , Tonelero , and Angostura are in different stages of construction. Pre-outfits of hull sections and equipment installation on Humaitá and Tonelero are taking place at the UFEM metallic structures manufacturing unit, while state-owned company Nuclebrás Equipamentos Pesados (NUCLEP) will fabricate sections for Angostura .

Sections of Humaitá are scheduled to be moved by road from the ESC hall in March 2019, with the submarine launch scheduled for September 2020 and commissioning in 2021. The remaining two boats are scheduled to be launched in December 2021 and December 2022 and commissioned in 2022 and 2023, respectively.

With a length of 71.62 m and a surface displacement of 1,870 tonnes, the S-BRs are designed for a full range of roles, including anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions, special operations, and intelligence-gathering.

The ships feature six 533 mm tubes firing either Naval Group F21 torpedoes or MBDA Exocet SM39 Block 2 Mod 2 missiles. Naval Group CANTO decoys launched from two Naval Group Contralto-S countermeasures launchers provide the S-BRs with anti-torpedo capability.

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