Colonel Silveira is the Brazilian project officer on the joint South African/Brazilian A-Darter, a fifth generation infrared homing air-to-air missile programme.
He said that a memorandum of understanding on cooperation on UAVs was signed between the two countries a year ago. The UAV to be jointly developed was the Denel Bateleur medium-altitude long-endurance UAV.
An initial South African proposal regarding the Bateleur was made to the commander of the Brazilian Air Force in mid-May. The Brazilians were expecting to receive a full proposal, including timeframes and cost estimates, from South Africa in the near future.
Should the project go ahead, as both sides hope, the Bateleur would be acquired by the Brazilian Air Force.
This joint UAV project would be modelled on the current joint A-Darter project, which was proving highly successful. The Bateleur concept was developed by South Africa’s Denel four years ago, but had been stalled as a result of a lack of funding.
It was known that development of the project was dependent on obtaining a foreign partner. These negotiations with Brazil are likely to provide that partner.