R/€ = 15.28Change: 0.02
R/$ = 14.42Change: 0.05
Au 1069.58 $/ozChange: 5.88
Pt 841.00 $/ozChange: 9.50
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?

And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters About Us
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
Jan 22, 2010

Brazil still pondering second joint missile project with SA

© Reuse this

The Brazilian Navy remains interested in South Africa's Umkhonto naval surface-to-air missile (SAM), in particular in proposed longer-range versions.

The Umkhonto – the name translates into English as Spear – is a product of Denel Dynamics, and is in service with the South African Navy and the Finnish Navy. Denel Dynamics is a subsidiary of the State-owned Denel defence industrial group.

The Umkhonto is an infrared (IR) homing missile, and the Denel Dynamics public brochure for it states "Range: 12 000 m", and gives a ceiling of 8 000 m. This first version of the SAM is sometimes referred to as the Umkhonto-IR.

The Brazilian Navy is known to be seeking a SAM with a range of more than 30 km but less than 50 km. (Truly long-range SAMs have a range greater than 50 km - for example, the American RIM-67C Standard SM-2 has a reported range of 40 nautical miles, or some 76 km, while the RIM-67B Standard SM-2 ER version can reach 75 nautical miles, or about 142 km).

There is a project to develop a version of the Umkhonto-IR with greater range, referred to as the Umkhonto-ER, with the suffix letters standing for extended range. This would also be an IR-homing weapon. And there is also a longer-term project to develop a yet longer-ranged version, designated the Umkhonto-R, which will be a radar-homing SAM (beyond a certain range, IR-homing becomes impractical for SAMs). This will require the development of a radar seeker head, which means that the Umkhonto-R will require a significant development process.

The engagement sequence for the Umkhonto-R would most likely be as follows: after target detection and missile launch, the SAM would be steered towards the target by commands from the warship, activating its radar seeker when within range, locking on to, and then intercepting, the target.

In contrast, the engagement sequence for the Umkhonto-IR is (and for the Umkhonto-ER would be): the warship detects a target on its acquisition radar and launches the missile against it; the SAM uses its on-board inertial navigation subsystem to fly itself to a "lock-on point" - the location at which its IR seeker can acquire the target and lock on to it - and then guide itself to interception.

No ranges have been given for the Umkhonto-ER, while various ranges have been suggested by various sources for the Umkhonto-R: 20 km, 25 km and 30 km. It will have to be a bigger weapon than the Umkhonto-IR in order to achieve any of these ranges.

It is believed that the South African Department of Defence is providing funding for the Umkhonto-R project, but not enough to allow a purely national development of the programme within a reasonable time. So Denel is apparently seeking for overseas partners to join the programme and, back in 2008, Engineering News reported that the group had proposed to the Brazilian Navy that it cooperate with in the development of the Umkhonto-R. This would follow the precedent set by the current cooperation between Denel Dynamics and the Brazilian Air Force in the development of the A-Darter air-to-air missile.

Late last year a Brazilian Admiral visited Denel Dynamics for discussions about the Umkhonto programme. Brazil has a programme to acquire large frigates, each of which would displace about 6 000 t (South Africa's new Valour-class frigates each displace about 3 600 t), which would be armed with the longer-ranged SAMs the Brazilian Navy desires.
Cooperating with Denel Dynamics in developing the Umkhonto-R would provide an opportunity for the Brazilians to gain expertise in the design and development of radar-homing technology.

However, there is apparently a problem regarding timescales. The Brazilian Navy hopes to order its new frigates later this year or (more likely) next year or (at the latest) in 2012. This would mean that they would be commissioned into service by 2017 at the latest. However, it seems that Denel Dynamics told the Brazilian Admiral that it would take ten years to jointly develop the Umkhonto-R, giving the long-range SAM an in-service date of 2020.

That leaves the question of whether or not the IR-homing Umkhonto-ER could be made to reach the range the Brazilians desire. Although it might need to be fitted with a second stage to do this, it would not need the development of a new seeker head, and so its development period should be considerably shorter than that for the Umkhonto-R. This would also open the possibility of Brazil adopting the Umkhonto-ER as a first step and then later switching to a jointly-developed Umkhonto-R.



Brazilian Navy needs longer-ranged SAMs for planned large frigates

New versions of SA's Umkhonto SAM under consideration

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Defence News
Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown
Updated 7 minutes ago Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown reported on Tuesday that far-reaching interMinisterial committee (IMC) discussions were advancing on how best to reform South Africa’s State-owned companies (SoCs), many of which were currently underperforming. There are around...
The University of Pretoria is well advanced in a programme to experimentally validate numerical simulation software developed by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to accurately model the sloshing of fuel in an aircraft's fuel tank. This was...
African Equity Empowerment Investments (AEEI) announced on Thursday that it has completed the R125m deal to acquire a 25% plus one share stake in Saab Grintek Defence (SGD). SGD is the South African subsidiary of Swedish defence and civil security company, Saab and...
Latest News
Updated 3 minutes ago Up to 60 people were injured when a substation near Pinedene train station in Centurion exploded on Tuesday morning. ER24 spokesperson Pieter Rossouw said initial reports indicated it was a train crash, but this was incorrect.
Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown
Updated 10 minutes ago Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown reported on Tuesday that far-reaching interMinisterial committee (IMC) discussions were advancing on how best to reform South Africa’s State-owned companies (SoCs), many of which were currently underperforming. There are around...
Kimberley Mines
Updated 1 hour 11 minutes ago South African diamond-mining company De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM) has sold its Kimberley Mines to a consortium made up of Ekapa Mining and the London-listed Petra Diamonds. Petra CEO Johan Dippenaar on Tuesday announced the acquisition of 49.9% of Kimberley...
Recent Research Reports
Water 2015: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2015 Report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context but also in the African and global context in terms of supply and demand, water stress and insecurity, and access to water and sanitation, besides others.
Input Sector Review: Pumps 2015 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2015 Input Sector Review on Pumps provides an overview of South Africa’s pumps industry with particular focus on pump manufacture and supply, aftermarket services, marketing strategies, local and export demand, imports, sector support, investment...
Liquid Fuels 2015: A review of South Africa's liquid fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2015 Report examines these issues in the context of South Africa’s business environment; oil and gas exploration; fuel pricing; the development of the country’s biofuels industry; the logistics of transporting liquid fuels; and...
Road and Rail 2015: A review of South Africa's road and rail sectors (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2015 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail infrastructure and network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and...
Defence 2015: A review of South Africa's defence sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Coal 2015 report examines South Africa’s coal industry with regards to the business environment, the key participants in the sector, local demand, export sales and coal logistics, projects being undertaken by the large and smaller participants in the...
Real Economy Year Book 2015 (PDF Report)
There are very few beacons of hope on South Africa’s economic horizon. Economic growth is weak, unemployment is rising, electricity supply is insufficient to meet demand and/or spur growth, with poor prospects for many of the commodities mined and exported. However,...
This Week's Magazine
The BMW Group will invest R6-billion at BMW Group South Africa’s (BMW SA’s) Rosslyn plant to produce the next-generation X3 sports-activity vehicle (SAV) for the local and export markets. Rosslyn will continue production of the current 3 Series through its lifecycle,...
The lack of consequences for poor performance and transgressions on the part of contractors remains a significant hurdle to tackling South Africa’s service delivery challenges, delegates heard at the Consulting Engineers South Africa Infrastructure Indaba, on...
City of Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mondli Gungubele earlier this month officially named the city’s bus rapid transit (BRT) system, Harambee.
NICK CHRISTODOULOU As about 58% of data stored by organisations is dark, they must identify this dark data to expose risks and valuable information
About 58% of unstructured data stored by companies is dark data, which means that the value or regulatory importance of the data has not been determined. Subsequently, most of the stored data add costs, rather than increasing revenue or reduce regulatory risks, says...
BRIAN VERWEY Effective management, review and administration of non-core elements can improve business operations and increase revenue and decrease unforeseen risks
Effective logistics, import/export and manufacturing consulting services require detailed industry knowledge and experience, but can add significant value to these industries by providing expert advice on various technical elements in their value chains, says...
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96