The Navy Patrol Vessel “Amazonas” was designed and built to meet the need for surveillance of the extensive maritime areas and will assist other Brazilian Navy ships to protect the Blue Amazon, an area of 4.4 million square kilometers of the country’s territorial waters.
The Oceanic Patrol Vessel (NPaOc) “Amazonas” was incorporated into the Brazilian Navy on June 29, in Portsmouth, United Kingdom. During its one-month trip along the African Coast, it docked in the cities of Natal (Rio Grande do Norte) and Salvador (Bahia) in September, and will arrive in Rio de Janeiro on October 5.
The Minister of Defense, Celso Amorim, and the Navy Commander, Admiral Julio Soares de Moura Neto, will attend the event.
The ship, built by BAE Systems Maritime – Naval Ships, received the same name as the class it belongs to: the “Amazonas.” By 2013 there will be two more ships in the same class, the Oceanic Patrol Vessels “Apa” and “Araguari,” each named after important rivers in Brazil. The construction of the NPaOc “Amazonas” began on February 15, 2008, while its keel was built on June 15 of the same year. The ship set sail on February 10, 2009, and was finalized in September of 2010.
The acquisition of the three Oceanic Patrol Vessels adds an important value to the Brazilian Navy because it can now intensify its Naval patrol and inspection actions, focused on the security of waterway traffic, prevention of environmental pollution, and the increase in search and rescue abilities along the extensive maritime area under Brazil’s responsibility.
During the approximately two-month trip to Rio de Janeiro, the vessel docked in the ports of Lisbon (Portugal), Las Palmas (Spain), Mindelo (Cape Verde), Cotonou (Benim), Lagos (Nigeria), Saint Thomas and Prince, Natal (Rio Grande do Norte – Brazil), Salvador (Bahia – Brazil), and Arraial do Cabo (Rio de Janeiro – Brazil). On the African Continent, the ship and crew performed anti-piracy and maintenance training demonstrations between ships with the Cape Verde Coast Guard, the Naval Force of Benin, the Nigerian Navy and the Coast Guard of Saint Thomas and Prince, as well as protocol and public visitations.
Once the NPaOc arrives in Brazil, it will be prepared for the Aviation Security Inspection in Salvador, which will take place in Natal, in preparation for aerial operations. In the latter city, the ship will remain open for public visitation.