Tag Archives: Naval Group

FREDA Frigate «Lorraine»

On 16 November 2022, the last of the 8 French FREMM frigates ordered by OCCAR for France was accepted by the organisation and delivered to the French Navy with the agreement of the DGA. This event follows the recent visit of the Director of OCCAR to the Naval Group Lorient shipyard and his visit on board the frigate on 11 October 2022 where the aims of the delivery schedule objective were strongly reminded.

FS Lorraine (D657)
The FREMM FOS1 FREDA Frigate «Lorraine» delivered to the French Navy

The ceremony took place in Toulon on board the ship in the presence of the Admiral commanding the French naval action force (ALFAN) and the Engineer General of Armaments directing the DGA’s naval armament programmes. This event takes place 10 years after the delivery of the FREMM Aquitaine, the first of the French series, almost to the day.

During his speech, on behalf of the Director of OCCAR, the Deputy FREMM Programme Manager recalled the pride and honour of the Organisation to proceed with the contractual acceptance of the FREMM Lorraine. He also highlighted the collective work performed by all the industrial and state teams who had made it possible to meet the long-standing deadline. He recalled the excellence of the cooperation with Italy on this programme and the commonalities developed in close cooperation.

This FREMM ship, which is also the second of the FREDA class with enhanced anti-air capabilities, also offers new operational capabilities. These include the integration of the new SYRACUSE 4 communication system, the integration of a new STIR radar and optronic fire control system and new functionalities offered by the Combat System upgrade. These new increments have been progressively integrated into the contract by OCCAR in consultation with industry, the DGA and the French Navy.

The FREMM programme remains the most ambitious and largest European naval initiative led by OCCAR. With a total of 18 frigates (eight ordered by France and ten by Italy), the French FREMM frigates will form the backbone of the French surface fleet.

The FREDA frigates are equipped with the most advanced weapon systems, such as Heracles Multifunction Radar, ASTER 15/30 Missiles, Exocet MM40 Missiles, MU 90 Torpedoes and increased performance of the combat system and communications.

Defence and Intervention Frigate

On Monday 7 November, the first defence and intervention frigate ordered by the French defence procurement agency (DGA) and destined to the French Navy was floated out in Lorient. Named Amiral Ronarc’h, this frigate will be delivered in 2024.

Amiral Ronarc'h (D660)
Naval Group launches the first defense and intervention frigate (FDI) for the French Navy

The ceremony took place in presence of Sébastien Lecornu, French minister of the Armed Forces, and his Greek counterpart, Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos.

During the ceremony, Pierre Eric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group, said: «We are proud to be here today to mark this new milestone in the industrial production of the first defence and intervention frigate for the French Navy. These latest generation ships bring together the best of French naval know-how. The Navies operating them with benefit from a high-performance, resilient ship, capable of dealing with threats that are constantly evolving, thanks in particular to the use of the most modern digital technologies. Naval Group remains committed to offering its customers the best of its know-how, at the service of their sovereignty».

The first sea trials will begin in 2023 and the ship will be delivered in 2024. The remaining four ships of the series will be delivered until 2030. During this period, Naval Group will also produce three FDI frigates for the Hellenic Navy, with a fourth currently planned as an option.

 

A local and national industrial performance

Thanks to the investments made by Naval Group, the site of Lorient has a modern industrial infrastructure that enables it to meet the technical and technological challenges of designing and building naval vessels in series. Thanks to this industrial organisation that optimises construction times, Naval Group is able to deliver two ships per year at its Lorient site from 2025.

To deliver these frigates with the required military performance, Naval Group mobilizes a wide range of skills. Some of them are very specific and rare and are often the result of a long or even very long acquisition: sheet metal carpenter, formator-straightener, hull welder, pipe fitter.

To ensure the sustainability of these cutting-edge skills in the service of naval programs, Naval Group promotes the recruitment of young talents and has recruited almost 500 work-study students and over 1500 new employees since the beginning of the year.

The FDI program reinforces the technological lead of the French naval industrial base. The program supports employment in the shipbuilding industry throughout France and, more particularly, in Lorient. At Naval Group, more than 1,200 people are working full time on the programme with more than 400 subcontractors. The FDI program involves a large number of French and Greek partners, including Thales and MBDA.

 

FDI, the first innovative, 100% digital and cyber-secure multi-role combat frigate

The FDI is a high sea vessel. Multipurpose and resilient, she is capable of operating, alone or within a naval force. She offers capabilities for all types of warfare: anti-surface, anti-air, antisubmarine and as well as for special forces projection. Bringing together the best of French naval technologies on a compact platform, the FDI is a powerful and innovative frigate, designed to meet the evolution of threats.

Designed and produced using the latest digital tools, FDI is the first frigate to benefit from a digital architecture that will allow her continuous adaptation to technological and operational evolutions. As a result, the FDI will be able to address current and future threats and to handle always more data.

The FDI will be the first French frigate natively protected against cyber threats, with two data centers virtually accommodating a great part of the ship applications. The FDI introduces the concept of a dedicated system for asymmetric warfare. This system will enable the coordination and conduct of the fight against small and close air and surface threats, including booby trapped boats.

Strongly armed (Exocet MM40 B3C anti-surface missiles, Aster anti-air missiles, MU90 antisubmarine torpedoes, artillery), the FDI is able to embark simultaneously a helicopter (10 tons class such as NH90) or the future Joint Light Helicopter and an unmanned aerial vehicle (up to 700 kg/1,543 lbs.). She can also receive a Special Forces detachment with their two commando boats. They are equipped with the new generation Seafire radar with four fixed panels, developed by Thales, which, combined with the missile delivery system, offers unmatched area defence capabilities.

 

Technical specifications

Displacement 4,500 tons class
Length 122 meters/400 feet
Beam 18 meters/59 feet
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Autonomy 45 days
Accomodation 125-persons crew + 28 passengers

 

Blue Shark

On October 19, 2022, Naval Group presented an event based on the state of the art of a set of technological bricks with high eco-responsible potential, to enter the naval combat of the future with innovative technological responses, while reducing environmental impacts.

Blue Shark
Naval Group presents Blue Shark, a high-tech and environmentally responsible concept ship at Euronaval 2022

With the Blue Shark, Naval Group offers an evolutionary vision of a fast, discreet, efficient and resilient combat ship that can be integrated into a collaborative naval force, while ensuring a reduced environmental impact. Blue Shark: ecodesigned for naval operations.

 

Blue Shark, a responsible concept ship with advanced operational capabilities

Naval Group developed Blue Shark, its newest surface concept ship based on a more environmentally efficient architecture and technological integration. Her name refers to its potential: Blue for high environmental technologies integrated and Shark because she is first and foremost a combat ship, a first rank ship, meeting the mission profiles of a frigate.

She is prepared for high-intensity collaborative combat, unobtrusive, efficient and resilient. Blue Shark is part of a naval force, equipped with offensive and defensive weapons and the capacity to implement all types of drones. Blue Shark can evolve over all seas for several months, with a simple maintenance and can also operate in severe sea states thanks to her stabilized multihull profile.

Blue Shark’s hydrodynamic performance relies heavily on her design which is composed of a main hull and two floats to ensure a ship resistance reduced by half, maximized stability and a low level of acoustic signature.

The use of composite materials on the superstructure enables significant functionalisation of the walls, improving the integration of communication means: low latency, high available and wide bandwidth.

Blue Shark deploys advanced operational capabilities such as high combat performances, assured sea readiness, high radar stealth and projection capability through a fleet of unmanned vehicles onboard. The ship anticipates and responds to the international environmental regulations.

Blue Shark enhances a broad view of Naval Group’s technical and technological expertise and its ability to lead and federate a network of trusted suppliers and partners towards eco-qualifications of tomorrow’s innovations. From propulsion to energy management, including materials and onboard waste treatment systems, Blue Shark incorporates some 20 promising environmental technologies, effectively addressing challenges without compromising combat superiority.

Naval Group experts have considered the ship’s impact on the environment, from the design to all her life cycle. It reduces CO2 emissions by at least two times compared to current frigates. Blue Shark shows that the highest combat performance can be reconciled with environmental preservation. Naval Group’s ambition is integrate environmental issues as springboards towards innovations with high potential for its clients.

 

Main characteristics

Long 160 meters/525 feet
Maximum width 37 meters/121.4 feet
Displacement 5 500 tons

 

FDI HN frigate

On 21st October 2022, the first block of the first FDI HN frigate (Defense and Intervention Frigate) for the Hellenic Navy was laid down in dry dock at Naval Group’s shipyard in Lorient in presence of Vice Admiral Stylianos Petrakis, Chief of Hellenic Navy General Staff. This important step marks the beginning of the assembly of the ship in the building hall.

FDI HN frigate
Naval Group achieved a major milestone in the FDI HN program for the Hellenic Navy

On 24th March 2022, Greece chose to equip its naval forces with three defence and intervention frigates, plus one optional, and their in-service support. The FDI HN, designed and produced by Naval Group in Lorient, will quickly and sustainably enhance the capabilities of the Hellenic Navy’s surface fleet as they will be delivered in a very short timeframe, starting in 2025 for the first two units and in 2026 for the third one.

Vice Admiral Stylianos Petrakis declared: «I am very proud that, as the Chief of the Hellenic Navy General Staff, I am attending the placement in the dry dock of the first FDI HN frigate’s first block. Our aspiration is that the FDI HN will become the spearhead of the Hellenic Fleet and will provide us with new operational capabilities in the near future. As such, the FDI HN program signals our countries will to stand together with solidarity against any threats and sets the foundations of the European defence of tomorrow».

Olivier de la Bourdonnaye, Executive Vice President for Programs at Naval Group, said: «We are proud to be here today to mark this major milestone in the industrial production of the first defence and intervention frigate for the Hellenic Navy. These multi-role, cyber-secure and scalable ships will ensure the superiority of information, engagement and sovereignty of the Hellenic naval forces».

 

A major program for the Hellenic industry

Thanks to a robust cooperation plan with the Hellenic industry (HIP, Hellenic Industry Participation Plan), the FDI HN program offers numerous industrial opportunities for Greece, creating jobs and added value in the country.

Naval Group’s teams have already established numerous partnerships with Greek industrial players and signed various contracts with the Hellenic industry. Naval Group’s Hellenic Industrial Participation plan will thus contribute to the construction of the FDI HN but also to the creation of a robust naval industrial ecosystem. The structured and longterm partnership proposed by Naval Group will foster production in Greece but also the capability to address future needs.

In this regard, on the 18th of October 2022, several contracts and framework agreements were signed between Naval Group and Greek companies during Euronaval, covering Platform and Combat Systems activities.

 

FDI HN, a powerful, innovative and cyber-secure multi-role combat frigate

The FDI HN features high level capabilities in all warfare domains: anti-ship, anti-air, antisubmarine and special forces projection. Its air and surface protection are ensured by the most modern sensors, including the Thales Sea Fire, the first all-digital multifunction radar with an active antenna and fixed panels.

The FDI HN is equipped with a unique integrated mast that brings together all the airborne sensors, enabling permanent 360° surveillance. As the first frigate on the market to be natively protected against the cyber threat, the FDI HN is equipped with two data centers hosting almost all of the ship’s applications.

 

Technical specifications of the FDI HN

Displacement 4,500 tons
Length approximately 122 meters/400 feet
Width 18 meters/59 feet
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Aviation facilities 10-ton class helicopter, VTOL Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

 

The main armaments of the FDI HN are

  • 32 Aster missiles developed by MBDA;
  • 8 Exocet MM40 B3C missiles developed by MBDA;
  • RAM missiles;
  • MU 90 torpedoes developed by Naval Group;
  • 76-mm gun;
  • 4 torpedo tubes;
  • CANTO counter measures developed by Naval Group.

 

Brazilian Scorpène

On Thursday September 1st, the first of the four Scorpène submarines of the ProSub program was commissioned by the Brazilian Navy. The Riachuelo (S40) has been built entirely in Brazil by Itaguaí Construções Navais (ICN) thanks to a Transfer of Technology programme from Naval Group. The ceremony took place at the Itaguaí Naval base.

Riachuelo (S40)
Delivery and commissioning of the Riachuelo, the first Brazilian Scorpène submarine entirely made in Brazil

Launched in December 2018, the Riachuelo successfully completed her sea trials and has now been delivered and entered into service within the Brazilian Navy.

Pierre Éric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group said: «The commissioning of the Riachuelo is a major milestone for the Brazilian Navy, ICN, Naval Group and all our partners. She will bring new capabilities to the Brazilian Navy for decades to come. The successful delivery of the Riachuelo, the first Scorpene submarine entirely built in Brazil is proof of the success of Naval Group’s transfer of technology. We are proud to be part of the ProSub program and remain fully committed to deliver the three other units of the series».

In Brazil, Naval Group went further than ever before in terms of transfer of technology. The Scorpène submarines are manufactured and assembled in the shipyard built in Itaguaí by Itaguaí Construções Navais, the group’s joint venture with Novonor. Humaitá (S41), the second submarine of the series launched in December 2020, will start her trials in September 2022.

ICN employs more than 1,700 Brazilian employees. Naval Group has selected and qualified many local suppliers who have joined its supply chain for the ProSub contract but also for other business opportunities. In this way, the company’s partners can have access to new markets by putting forward the know-how and experience acquired through the program. Naval Group thus contributes to the development of a robust Brazilian naval industrial ecosystem. Hundreds of Naval Group employees are also working in the back office on all French sites.

 

Naval Group, a long-term partner of Brazil

In 2009, within the framework of the French-Brazilian strategic defence cooperation agreement, the Brazilian Navy chose Naval Group for its Programa de desenvolvimento de Submarinos, the ProSub program. Brazil decided to reinforce its submarine force with four new conventional submarines (SSK) and the development of an indigenous nuclear-powered submarine (SSN).

Through an unprecedented transfer of technology, Naval Group is working with Brazil to build and operate four conventional Riachuelo-class submarines (Scorpène type) in a new shipyard and operational naval base built in Itaguaí for this purpose.

 

Scorpène, a modern, high-performant, and stealthy submarine

The Scorpène is a 2000-tons conventional submarine designed by Naval Group for all types of missions, such as anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, long-range strikes, special operations or intelligence gathering. Extremely stealthy and fast, it has a level of operating automation that allows a limited number of crew, which reduces its operating costs significantly. Its combat edge is highlighted by the fact that it has 6 weapon launching tubes, 18 weapons (torpedoes, missiles).

With 14 submarines sold worldwide, the Scorpène is a key reference of conventional attack submarines (SSK) for navies around the world. It can be easily adapted to specific requirements of customers and the continuous improvement of the Scorpene ensures the seamless integration of the latest technology onboard.

rMCM program

On 14 June 2022, Naval Group has laid the keel for the second of the twelve mine countermeasure platforms of the Belgian-Dutch rMCM program, the HNLMS Vlissingen, intended for the Royal Netherlands Navy. The keel laying ceremony took place in Lanester, in the presence of Vice Admiral René Tas, Commander of the Royal Netherlands Navy, Commodore Harold Boekholt, Director of Projects of the Netherlands Defence Material Organisation, Lieutenant General Marc Thys, Belgian Deputy Chief of Defence and Major General Ivan De Tender, Belgian Material Resources Public Procurement.

HNLMS Vlissingen
Naval Group lays the keel for the second mine countermeasure platform of the Belgian-Dutch rMCM programme

This programme was awarded in 2019 to Belgium Naval & Robotics, the consortium formed by Naval Group and ECA Group, following an international competition. It provides for the supply to the Belgian Navy and the Royal Netherlands Navy of twelve mine countermeasures platforms and around a hundred drones integrated inside a toolbox that will equip the vessels.

Kership, a joint venture between Naval Group and Piriou, is in charge of the production of the twelve platforms which are assembled in Concarneau and Lanester. They will be then all armed afloat by Piriou in Concarneau. Naval Group, as overall architect and prime contractor, is responsible for the design of the ships, the overall integration, and the testing and commissioning of the mission system (combat system and mine countermeasures system). ECA Group, as co-contractor, is in charge of the unmanned drones’ system. The drones will be produced in ECA Group factory (Ostend, Belgium). The maintenance of the ships will be carried out in Belgium in close collaboration between the Belgian Navy and Naval Group Belgium, with the assistance of its partner Flanders Ship Repair.

Pierre Eric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group said: «I am very pleased to welcome our customers here in Lanester to take this new important step in the programme. The rMCM programme is a great story of cooperation between European partners, but also between industrial partners. It is also the story of a shared vision for the future of mine warfare and naval defence. Together, we are preparing the future of mine countermeasures by sharing a common game-changing defence solution».

Dominique Giannoni, CEO of ECA Group added: «We are very happy to be present at this ceremony alongside our partner Naval Group. All ECA Group teams are mobilised for the success of this highly innovative program: it aims at an unprecedented level of automation of mine warfare operations, with the coordinated implementation of underwater, surface and aerial drones. In close collaboration with Naval Group teams, we are developing an integrated and optimised system to meet the requirements of our Belgian and Dutch customers».

Chief of the Royal Netherlands Navy, Vice Admiral Rene Tas stresses the importance of these platforms for the future proofing of mine counter measures and therefore, the safety of (commercial) vessels at sea for the Netherlands and our NATO Partners.

These specialised Mine CounterMeasures (MCM) platforms are the first to have the capability to embark and launch a combination of surface drones (themselves 12-metre/39-foot, 20-tonne vessels), underwater drones and aerial drones. The mine countermeasures platforms will use a mainly autonomous system for detection, classification and neutralisation of mines. They can withstand underwater explosions and have very low acoustic, electrical and magnetic signatures, in line with the missions to be carried out.

 

These mine countermeasure platforms have the following characteristics:

Length 82,6 m/271 feet
Width 17 m/56 feet
Displacement 2800 t
Maximum speed 15,3 knots/46 mph/74 km/h
Range >3500 nautical miles/4028 miles/6482 km
Crew 63 people (base crew 33 people)
Drone capabilities ECA Group’s UMISOFT System, 2 unmanned surface vehicles (ECA Group’s Inspector 125), 3 autonomous underwater vehicles (A-18 equipped with ECA Group’s UMISAS 120 sonar), 2 towed sonars (T-18 equipped with ECA Group’s UMISAS 240 sonar), 2 Mine Identification & Disposal Systems (MIDS) systems (ECA Group’s Seascan et K-Ster C), 2 unmanned aerial vessels (UMS Skeldar’s V200), 1 ECA Group influence mine sweeping system integrating 5 CTM magnetic modules et 1 PATRIA acoustic module
Embarkation capacity 2 SOLAS rigid hull inflatable boats of 7 m/23 feet
Handling 2 side gantries with floating cradle for surface drones and commando boats, a 15 t dedicated rear crane and a 3 t overhead crane

 

Al Emarat

On May 13th 2022, Al Emarat (P111), the second Gowind corvette ordered by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to Naval Group, has been launched in Lorient in presence of an official delegation from the United Arab Emirates Navy.

Al Emarat (P111)
Naval Group launches the second Gowind corvette for the United Arab Emirates Navy

In 2019, the United Arab Emirates ordered two Gowind corvettes to be built in France. The first corvette, Bani Yas (P110), was launched in December 2021. The second one, Al Emarat (P111), has been launched on May 13th in the Naval Group Lorient shipyard.

Naval Group, as a turn-key solution provider, will also train the UAE Navy’s crew from the equipment level up to the operational level. Starting in France, this preparation will continue with team-building and practice on operational scenarios in every warfare area in the Gulf.

Stéphane Frémont, Director of Surface Ship Programs at Naval Group, said: «The launching of Gowind Al Emarat (P111) is a major industrial and symbolic milestone, where the corvette reaches her natural environment. The two Bani Yas class vessels benefit from the modular design of the Gowind family and are the perfect asset to help the UAE Navy meet the challenges of today and tomorrow thanks to the most advanced technologies».

Gowind enjoys significant commercial success as 12 units have already been sold. Most of them are built locally through Transfer of Technology and partnerships with local industry, for example in Egypt where three units are now in service within the Egyptian Navy.

 

Gowind: designed for naval operations

Gowind is Naval Group’s response to 21st century security and defence challenges. It is a corvette-size multi-mission Surface Combatant offering capabilities in all areas. It is designed to perform the full spectrum of naval defence operations and maritime security roles, with the highest level of performance.

Sturdy, strongly equipped, highly manoeuvrable, Gowind integrates, through Naval Group’s SETIS Combat Management System (CMS) and innovative structural solutions, the latest generation sensors and weapons. Designed to be used against air, naval or underwater threats from the initial steps of the engineering process, Gowind is multipurpose by design.

Gowind is a sea proven, enduring, stealth and highly survivable platform offering:

  • high performance warfare capabilities integrated through the SETIS CMS and an efficient and innovative Panoramic Sensors and Intelligence Module (PSIM);
  • automated systems for user-friendly operations by an optimized crew;
  • large and smart deployable assets: heavy helicopter, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), Rigid-Hulled Inflatable Boats (RHIBs);
  • growth potential driven by customer requirement and innovation.

 

Technical features

Overall hull length 102 m/334.6 feet
Overall beam 16 m/52.5 feet
Displacement 2,800 t

 

Jacques Chevallier

On 29 April, the first of the four force replenishment vessels BRF (Bâtiments Ravitailleurs de Force in French) of the FlotLog program was launched in Saint-Nazaire.

Jacques Chevallier (A725)
Launching of the Jacques Chevallier (A725), first Replenishment Vessel for the French Navy

The Bâtiment Ravitailleur de Forces Jacques Chevallier (A725) is the first of a series of four ships intended for the French Navy. The contract was awarded in January 2019 to Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group. The four vessels will be delivered successively until 2029.

The FlotLog program is part of a Franco-Italian cooperation led by Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d’ARmement (OCCAR) on behalf of the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) and its Italian counterpart Naval Armament Directorate (NAVARM), within the Logistic Support Ship (LSS) program.

The BRF Jacques Chevallier (A725) was launched on 29 April in Saint-Nazaire. The ceremony took place in the presence of Laurent Castaing, General Manager of Chantiers de l’Atlantique, Pierre Éric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group, Matteo Bisceglia, Director of OCCAR, François Pintart, Director of Operations of DGA and Admiral Xavier Baudouard, Commander of the French Naval Action Force.

Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique said: «Our industrial facilities enabled us to assemble the 20 blocks of the BRF Jacques Chevallier’s hull in a record time of 50 days. This demonstrates that our expertise as manufacturer of civilian ships can greatly benefit the military in terms of time, cost and quality control».

«Naval Group is proud to be once again present alongside Chantiers de l’Atlantique in this European program. This BRF, the first of a series of four ships, is a strong symbol of Franco-Italian cooperation. It is also a new successful cooperation between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group, which combine their skills in order to offer the DGA and the French Navy the best expertise in the civil and military sectors in the construction of ships of heavy tonnages», added Pierre Éric Pommellet, CEO of Naval Group.

The first sea trials will start in the second half of 2022, with delivery of the first unit scheduled for the first half of 2023.

 

A strategic industrial partnership serving the French Navy

The design and construction of the four ships of the FlotLog program is the result of a successful industrial cooperation between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group, driven by OCCAR, in close collaboration with the DGA and the French Navy.

Chantiers de l’Atlantique carries out the global design and the construction of the four ships, and ensures the integration and the implementation of the embedded systems. Naval Group is responsible for the design, development and integration of the combat system and the systems destined to receive aircraft and to embark ammunition.

The BRFs, which will replace the French Navy’s Durance-class ships, have a mission of logistical support of the combat vessels of the French Navy deployed as part of the naval air group or naval task groups. With a capacity of 13,000 m3, they carry fuel, ammunition, spare parts, as well as food for the vessels. These tankers will also participate to support missions for inter-allied operations, underlining the need for interoperable equipment. As a true link in the fleet, these tankers will enable France to continue to have an ocean-going navy, capable of conducting long-term operations far from the national territory and thus maintaining its strategic autonomy.

This new series of the logistics fleet is equipped with self-defence capacities. The combat system of the four ships, whose architecture is based on Naval Group’s Combat Management System, ensures the protection against close threats and the fight against asymmetric surface and air threats.

In line with international standards, the BRFs will replace the current tankers with increased capabilities and modern equipment in order to support the aviation group constituted around the aircraft-carrier.

The Jacques Chevallier (A725), named after the naval engineer and father of French nuclear propulsion, will carry up to 31,000 tons at full load, making it the second heaviest ship in the French Navy, after the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle. It will be based in Toulon.

 

Main Characteristics of the vessels

Full loaded displacement 31,000 tons
Overall length 194 m/636.5 feet
Overall width 27.60 m/90.5 feet
Crew capacity 190 people, including 130 crew members and 60 passengers
Total deadweight 14,870 tons
Freight volume 13,000 m3
Total installed capacity 24 MW

 

Bartolomé Cordero

The last of the four Argentinian Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), OPV 87 A.R.A. Contraalmirante Cordero, was delivered on April 13, 2022 to the Argentine Navy. The delivery and commandment handover ceremony of the last vessel of the series marks the completion of a successful program.

ARA Almirante Bartolomé Cordero (P-54)
Naval Group delivers the last multi-mission offshore patrol vessel for Argentina

A.R.A. Contraalmirante Cordero has been delivered to the Argentine Navy today in Concarneau in the presence of Francisco Cafiero, Secretary for International Defence Affairs at the Argentine Ministry of Defence, Vice Admiral Enrique Antonio Traina, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Argentine Navy and Alain Guillou, EVP International Development at Naval Group. It is part of the contract signed by Naval Group with Argentina in 2019 for the supply of four Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPV – «Patrulleros Oceánicos Multipropósito» in Spanish).

The A.R.A. Contraalmirante Cordero is the last vessel of the series and its delivery marks the success of a program that has met all its deadlines: the A.R.A. Bouchard (ex-L’Adroit) was delivered in December 2019 two months ahead of schedule, and the second and third offshore patrol vessels A.R.A Piedrabuena and A.R.A Storni were delivered in April and October 2021, in line with the original schedule.

This success was made possible thanks to the close collaboration between Naval Group, Kership and Piriou, who worked side by side with the Argentinean Navy. The excellent overall customer satisfaction rate, measured at 97%, confirms the excellent conduct of this program.

Captain Santiago Villemur, representative of the Argentinian Navy in France said: «We are conscious that delivering 4 ships in 3 years, training the crews and providing the associated logistics services was a real challenge. Our thanks and gratitude go to all the men and women of Naval Group and its industrial partners who have worked tirelessly to achieve this feat. These ships are already contributing to the defence of Argentina’s sovereign interests by enabling the Argentine Armada to carry out its missions at sea».

Stéphanie Giroud, director of the program at Naval Group added: «It is with great pride and emotion that we are delivering the last vessel of the series to Argentina on the exact date stipulated in the contract and are witnessing the raising of the Argentinean flag in Brittany for the fourth time. The success of this project is a collective one and is due to the excellence of the relationship established with the Argentinean Armada, whose high standards and confidence have motivated our teams to meet the client’s expectations to the maximum. It is also the result of a constructive and innovative industrial partnership between the teams of Naval Group, Kership and Piriou».

 

OPV 87, an innovative and sea proven vessel

The Argentine offshore patrol vessels benefit from innovations developed by Naval Group and proven by the French Navy, which has operated L’Adroit in several oceans for six years for multiple maritime security operations, alone or in cooperation. The three patrol vessels of the series constructed in Concarneau offer the same assets and features as those of the A.R.A. Bouchard. Several developments have been incorporated to meet the needs of the Argentine Navy as closely as possible. Better armed and motorised than the Bouchard, equipped with an active stabilisation system and a bow thruster, it is also Ice proven, i.e., adapted to navigation in the cold waters of Antarctica. They offer:

  • very high endurance and excellent sea-worthiness;
  • a 360° visibility from the bridge and a unique mast for a panoramic radar coverage;
  • the rapid, safe and discrete deployment of intervention crafts launched by a double system of ramps at the stern of the patrol vessel.

This range of ships also benefits from Naval Group’s expertise in information and command systems, allowing for extensive surveillance of the maritime space and the detection of suspicious behaviours. The A.R.A Contraalmirante Cordero is equipped with the POLARIS system and NiDL tactical data link system, specifically developed by Naval Group for state action missions at sea and sea-proven by the French Navy.

 

Technical features

The Offshore Patrol Vessel is able to stay on high seas during more than three weeks, to reach a speed of 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h and to accommodate a helicopter. Implemented by a reduced crew of 40 members, it is also able to accommodate about twenty extra passengers.

 

Length 87 meters/285.4 feet
Beam 14 meters/45.9 feet
Displacement 1,650 tons
Maximum speed over 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h
Accommodation 59 (crew and passengers)
Endurance > 7,000 nautical miles/8,055 miles/12,964 km
Boarding capacity two light crafts of 9 meters/29.5 feet and one 10-ton class helicopter

 

Hellenic Navy

On March 24, 2022, Greece and Naval Group signed the contracts for three defence and intervention frigates, plus one optional, and their in-service support. Two FDI HN (Hellenic Navy) will be delivered in 2025 and the third one in 2026.

FDI HN (Hellenic Navy)
Greece launches its program for three defence and intervention frigates (FDI HN) with Naval Group

 

A new step in the strategic partnership with Greece

In accordance with the defence agreement signed last October between Greece and France, the Hellenic authorities have signed two contracts with Naval Group for the supply of three Defence and Intervention Frigates (FDI HN), plus one optional, as well as their in-service support.

The contracts include as well the supply of MU90 torpedoes and CANTO countermeasures. The contracts were signed today in Athens by Vice-Admiral (rtd) Aristeidis Alexopoulos, General Director of the General Directorate for Defence Investments and Armaments, and Pierre Éric Pommellet, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Naval Group, in the presence of the Greek Minister of Defence, Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos and the French Minister of the Armed Forces, Florence Parly.

Pierre Éric Pommellet, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Naval Group said: “Naval Group is proud, along with its French industrial partners Dassault, MBDA and Thales, to be a part of this new chapter in the strategic alliance between Greece and France. Greece has chosen the latest generation of frigates that bring together the best of French naval know-how and will strengthen the capabilities of the Hellenic Navy. The frigates program is the first of many steps in the partnership between Naval Group and the Hellenic Navy and will contribute to the development of the partnership between our countries, our navies and our industries for decades to come.”

The FDI HN will quickly and sustainably enhance the capabilities of the Hellenic Navy’s surface fleet as they will be delivered in a very short timeframe, starting in 2025 for the first two units and in 2026 for the third one.

 

A major program for the Hellenic industry

Thanks to a very ambitious cooperation plan with the Hellenic industry (HIP, Hellenic Industry Participation Plan), this program offers numerous industrial opportunities in Greece, creating jobs and skills in the country. Naval Group’s teams have been working in Greece for several months to establish partnerships with local industrial players with the objective of signing the first contracts in the coming months. With its R&D component, the cooperation plan is a sustainable plan that is fully in line with the objective of strengthening the European defence industrial and technological base through Franco-Greek cooperation.

 

A powerful, innovative and cyber-secure frigate

The FDI HN features high level capabilities in all warfare domains: anti-ship, anti-air, antisubmarine and special forces projection. Its air and surface defences are ensured by the most modern sensors, including the Thales Sea Fire, the first all-digital multifunction radar with an active antenna and fixed panels.

The FDI HN is equipped with a unique integrated mast that brings together all the airborne sensors, enabling permanent 360° surveillance. As the first frigate on the market to be natively protected against the cyber threat, the FDI HN is equipped with two data centers hosting almost all of the ship’s applications.

 

Technical specifications of the FDI HN

Displacement 4,500 tons
Length approximately 122 metres/400 feet
Width 18 metres/59 feet
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Aviation facilities 10-ton class helicopter, VTOL Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)
The main armaments of the FDI HN are 32 Aster missiles developed by MBDA
8 Exocet MM40 B3C missiles developed by MBDA
Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) missiles
MU 90 torpedoes developed by Naval Group
76-mm gun
4 torpedo tubes
CANTO counter measures developed by Naval Group