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BAE Systems exhibited several naval solutions at EXPODEFENSA 2019 , including its Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), which it has sold to Brazil, Thailand and the United Kingdom.

These are medium-sized vessels of versatile design, for Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), security, environmental protection or coastal surveillance missions.There are two basic designs, 80 and 90m in length, with displacements of 1,800 and 1,900t respectively, that can be adapted to the requirements of new customers such as Colombia.

The 90m version includes an aerial surveillance radar that can detect aircraft flying in typical drug trafficking patterns and also has rigid inflatable boats for rescue operations. As main armament they carry 30mm automatic turrets. The 90m OPV has a flight deck for medium-sized helicopters of up to 7t and can carry up to six 20ft containers for various tasks, in addition to a 16t crane.

In Brazil, the P120 AMAZONAS, P121 APA and P122 ARAGUARI are in service, while in Thailand a 90m OPV has been sold and assistance for local construction of a second agreed. In Britain, the Royal Navy operates four OPVs of the RIVER class, with five more of the RIVER Batch 2 type being built.

The OPV P120 AMAZONAS of the Brazilian Navy. (Photo: Mönch archive)

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