Brazil Launches Third Riachuelo-Class Submarine

Brazil has officially launched Tonelero (S42), the third Riachuelo-class submarine built in collaboration with France, at the Itaguaí Naval Complex in Rio de Janeiro.

The launch was spearheaded by Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The S42 will join its sister submarines, Riachuelo and Humaitá, at its homeport in Madeira Island in Itaguaí, southeast Brazil. It will undergo further testing to assess its stability at sea, ensuring its navigation and combat systems function properly.

The submarine program is a product of Brazil and France’s strategic shipbuilding deal signed in 2008, which costs 40 billion Brazilian reals ($7.9 billion). Itaguaí and Naval Group served as the primary developers of the submarine.

A fourth submarine, Angostura, is set to launch by late 2025.

Brazil’s Riachuelo-Class Subs

Modeled after France’s Scorpène-class submarines, the Riachuelo-class vessels are slightly larger, with a length of 232 feet (71 meters) and a width of 20 feet (6 meters).

The submarines are equipped with diesel-electric propulsion, which allows them to reach 21 knots (24 miles/39 kilometers per hour) and stay in operation for 70 days straight.

A nuclear-powered variant, Álvaro Alberto, is currently under development, and is set to be launched by 2033.

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