||The TaB2-27.9 vol% SiC composite was synthesized by self-propagating high-temperature synthesis starting from mechanically activated Ta, B4C and Si reactants. The obtained powders were spark plasma sintered at 1800 degrees C and 20 MPa for 30 min total time, thus obtaining a 96% dense product. The latter one was characterized in terms of microstructure, hardness, fracture toughness, and oxidation resistance. The obtained results, particularly the fracture toughness, are promising when compared to those related to analogous materials reported in the literature and fabricated with similar and different processing routes. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd and Techna Group S.r.l. All rights reserved.