João Belo-class frigate

The João Belo class, also known as Comandante João Belo class, is a class of four frigates of French design, identical to the Commandant Rivière class, with extra equipment for tropical climates. Ordered by the Portuguese Navy in 1964, the four ships of this class were constructed at the shipyard in Nantes.

NRP Comandante João Belo (F480)
Class overview
Name: João Belo (modified Commandant Rivière)
Builders: AC de Nantes, France
Preceded by: Almirante Pereira da Silva class
In commission: 1967 - present day
Completed: 4
Active: 2 (Uruguay)
Scrapped: 2
General characteristics
Type: Frigate
Displacement: 1,750 tons standard, 2,230 tons full load
Length: 102.7 m (337 ft)
Beam: 11.5 m (38 ft)
Draught: 4.3 m (14 ft)
Propulsion: 2 shaft 4 diesel engines SEMT Pielstick V12 PC2 16,000 hp (12 MW)
Speed: 25 kn (46 km/h; 29 mph)
Range: 7,500 nmi (13,900 km; 8,600 mi) at 16 kn (30 km/h; 18 mph)
Boats & landing
craft carried:
LCPS boats
  • 9 officers
  • 67 non-commissioned officers
  • 93 Quarter-masters and sailors
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • DRBV22A sentry radar
  • Decca 1226 navigation radar
  • DRBC32C fire control radar
  • DUBA3 sonar
  • SQS17 sonar
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
ARBR10 radar detector

In the 1960s the Portuguese Navy was interested in the acquisition of British frigates of the Leander class, but because of British political opposition against Portugal this acquisition was impossible. Portugal was then forced to buy frigates of an already existing project due the urgency in the acquisition of naval ships for the defense of African, Macanese and Timorese waters.

The two remaining frigates in active service of this class were replaced, in 2008, by the Bartolomeu Dias class (Dutch Karel Doorman class) in the Portuguese Navy. NRP João Belo and NRP Sacadura Cabral were sold to the Uruguayan Navy, becoming, respectively ROU Uruguay and ROU Pedro Campbell.


Pennant Name Shipyard Commissioned Status
F480 Comandante João Belo Ateliers et chantiers de Bretagne (ACB) Nantes 1967 Sold to Uruguay as ROU 01 Uruguay
F481 Comandante Hermenegildo Capelo Ateliers et chantiers de Bretagne (ACB) Nantes 1968 Decommissioned in 2004. Sunk in 2013 to form an artificial reef in Algarve. "Ocean Revival" program.
F482 Comandante Roberto Ivens Ateliers et chantiers de Bretagne (ACB) Nantes 1968 Decommissioned in 1998 after colliding with a Tanker ship on a NATO exercise. The vessel was seriously damaged by the accident and had to be towed to harbour. Due to the age and extent of the damage, it was decided to decommission the ship. It was stripped of its equipment, taken to sea and sunk.
F483 Comandante Sacadura Cabral Ateliers et chantiers de Bretagne (ACB) Nantes 1969 Sold to Uruguay as ROU 02 Comandante Pedro Campbell. Decommissioned as of late 2018, used as spare parts for ROU 01 "Uruguay".

See also


  • Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1947-1995
  • "Comandante Hermenegildo Capelo ship profile" (in Portuguese). Portuguese Navy. Archived from the original on December 30, 2008.
  • "João Belo class" (in Portuguese). Área Militar.
  • "Ocean Revival".

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