Specialist kit for Brazil’s Pathfinder teams
The Brazilian Army’s Pathfinder Company is 67 years old. They were the first Special Forces unit in Brazil when they were created in 1948.
Apart from Brazil’s new IA2 5.56mm rifle and the older ParaFal 7.62mm rifle what other rifles can you see here?
Looking at the Pathfinder’s communications equipment it includes the Harris RF-7800S personal role radio; Falcon III 7800V; an Icom ICA6(24) VHF air-ground transceiver radio and Motorola PRO 5150. Their HF radio is the VX-1700 Vertex transceiver and Hughes Inmarsat SATCOMS.
Is this the best communications equipment Brazil can get on the market for their Pathfinder operations? It seems to be similar to what other specialist units have, but are there any differences? What else is out there?
Other equipment seems to include: Blackhawk Assault Vests; Garmin GPS; LRB 12 Knight rangefinder binoculars; a Newcon Optix x80 spotter scope; and a Galaxy Tab 3 with a 1.2 GHz CPU tablet.
Brazil’s Pathfinders consists of 1 Command Platoon and three Pathfinder Detachments. Each detachment has two teams, with 18 personnel per team. So that is 168 men in the deployed teams altogether.
Each team has a specialised role that is related to rapid deployment and the most likely operational environments and their training programme is run alongside that of Brazil’s newer SF units.
The first is Alpha team, which is specialised in High Altitude Low Opening parachute operations. Bravo team does 12,000ft freefall parachuting.
Charlie team has jungle and Pantanal (swamplands) expertise. One team is prepared each year to do this role, but all teams have this training so there will be more than one available if required.
Delta team is trained to operate in the aquatic environment and includes jungle and Pantanal operations.
Training for Echo team is optimised for arid and semi-arid environments as Brazil has areas with this terrain in the North West of the country.
Foxtrot team is specialised in the preparation of airfields and landing zones.