Brazil's navy has signed the last contracts covering research and development work on a locally designed anti-ship missile that is expected to be deployed from late this decade.

With Brazil's Atech and seeker provider Omnisys having already signed up, the two new additions are Avibras and Mectron. The former is being entrusted with developing a solid-fuel rocket engine for the Mansup missile, while Mectron will build the prototype.

The navy will coordinate the development programme, which is intended to provide a replacement for Brazil's MBDA MM40 Exocet Block II weapons from around 2018-19. The project has an initial budget of $50 million.

To have a range of approximately 70km (38nm), the Mansup will use an active radar seeker for terminal guidance.

Local sources have noted the involvement of Avibras and Mectron in a modernisation project for the navy's Exocet missiles. The first modified was handed over last October, with Brazil expecting to field the design until 2021 or 2022.

Source: Flight International