Construction begins in Brazil on first DCNS-designed S-BR Scorpene class submarine

On 16 July 2011, DCNS and its partner Odebrecht, through their joint company ICN (Itaguaî Construèöes Navais), launched construction of the first S-BR Scorpene class submarine under the Brazilian submarine programme. The ‘first cut’ ceremony, marking the effective implementation of the technology transfer agreement, was held in Itaguaî, Brazil, in the presence of the country’s most senior political officials.

The start of construction work in Brazil on the first S-BR Scorpene class submarine is one of the most important milestones of the programme. It demonstrates that the engineers, technicians and workers trained at DCNS in France have acquired all the necessary knowledge and skills, particularly the steel forming and welding techniques used in the construction of the pressure hull. It points out also that Brazil has the state-of-the-art industrial facilities needed to produce latest-generation submarine hulls. All aspects of the programme are supervised by the Brazilian Navy, under a wide-ranging technology transfer agreement.

The programme covers the design and construction of four Scorpene conventional-propulsion submarine submarines, design and construction assistance with the non-nuclear portion of Brazil’s first nuclear-powered submarine and support for the construction of a naval base and a naval shipyard. The first of the four Scorpene-class conventional-propulsion submarines is scheduled to enter active service in 2017. These four submarines feature conventional diesel-electric propulsion. Their length overall is approximately 75 metres, with a surface displacement of close to 2,000 tonnes. They will be operated by a crew of 30 to 45.

The four Scorpene conventional-propulsion submarines meet the particular specifications of the Brazilian Navy and are perfectly tailored to the protection and defence of Brazil’s 8,500-kilometre coastline. They are highly versatile ocean patrol submarines, designed for all types of missions, including anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, special operations and intelligence gathering.