Tag Archives: OCCAR

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

 

Near Future Submarine

22.2.22 (February 2, 2022) is a palindrome number, it was also the date where a major milestone was delivered for the NFS Programme; namely the System Design Review (SDR). This is a highly challenging project, which will enhance Italy’s strategic submarine capabilities.

U212 NFS
U212 NFS programme

The second milestone of the U212 Near Future Submarine (NFS) Programme has been successfully delivered, in accordance to the strict principles of the System Engineering adopted for this design.

The delivery of the second milestone was a very demanding activity, which required a conspicuous amount of effort from both internal and external stakeholders, including NFS Programme Division, OCCAR PMSD, Contractors and Industry. It saw Nation’s support through its specialised submariners skills.

All efforts aimed at completing the required activities within the expected timescales and deadlines in order to comply with the baselined programme schedule. Although Italy is the only current PS, the NFS Programme is a catalyst for enhanced international skills technologies amongst EU and non-EU countries. The SDR was a real success, so much so that participants and stakeholder initiated discussions immediately after to address the Critical Design Review (CDR). It is OCCAR’s intention to meet Nations’ requirements and to comply with cost, time and performance.

MALE RPAS Stage 2

On 24/02/2022, OCCAR-EA Director, Matteo Bisceglia, on behalf of the German, French, Italian and Spanish Participating States, was delighted to sign the European Medium Altitude Long Endurance Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (MALE RPAS) Stage 2 Contract with Airbus Defence & Space GmbH represented by the CEO, Michael Schoellhorn.

MALE RPAS
European MALE RPAS Stage 2 Contract with Airbus Defence & Space GmbH

This important contract for Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d’ARmement (OCCAR) and European defence encompasses the development and manufacture of 20 Medium Altitude Long Endurance air systems and more than 5 years of initial in-service support. The European MALE RPAS will offer capabilities that are beyond state of the art, especially in safety, information security and in the field of Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR). The manufacture of the first Prototype is expected to commence in 2024.

This critical cooperative programme draws on the expertise of three major sub-contractors (Dassault Aviation S.A., Leonardo S.p.A and Airbus Defence & Space SAU) and, through an open tendering process, mid-cap European system suppliers in the value chain and across the entire supply base. The early phase of the programme is co-funded by the European Union through the European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP) with the aim to strengthen Europe’s strategic autonomy and sovereignty.

The European MALE RPAS Stage 1 Contract, a Definition Study, was launched in 2016 to define common requirements between Germany, France, Italy and Spain and was successfully concluded in 2018 with the System Preliminary Design Review. The subsequent years have been spent ensuring that the follow-on Stage 2 contract would meet Programme Participating States’ expectations in terms of performance, affordability and value for money. In that respect, the successful completion of this negotiation phase was only made possible thanks to the unwavering drive of OCCAR-EA, nations and industry teams to adhere to established cooperation procurement best practices. Demonstrating that the only way for nations to be able to acquire complex capabilities such as MALE RPAS is through cooperation. As such, the MALE RPAS programme includes but is not limited to a common configuration, a single final assembly line, a common training and support solution and the firm determination to maintain a common organisation to manage all certification, qualification and accreditation activities.

Sea Trials

On February 22, 2022, Naval Group started the first sea trials of the FREMM DA ‘Lorraine’ (D657), an important step before the frigate’s delivery. For several days, the eighth FREMM to be delivered to the French Navy and second with enhanced air defence capabilities (FREMM DA), will undergo sea trials off the coast of Brittany.

Lorraine (D657)
Lorraine (D657), the 8th and final Aquitaine-class frigate, setting sails from the Naval Group shipyard in Lorient to start initial sea trials (Naval Group picture)

Ordered by the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR), on behalf of the French Procurement Agency (DGA) and the French Navy, the FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) is the eighth and last multi-mission frigate to be built for the French Navy. It is also the second FREMM with enhanced air defence capabilities (FREMM DA).

Two hundred and fifty people are mobilized to prepare this first sea trial. This session will enable the performance of the ship’s propulsion and navigation systems to be tested. Several campaigns will then be carried out to test all the systems. FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) will then be delivered by the end of the year.

«This first sea trial is a very important moment, especially as this is the last frigate of the FREMM series. This is the first time the ship has been at sea. This milestone also symbolizes three years of preliminary work with our teams and partners. Thanks to exchanges since the beginning of this program in 2005, the FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) carries the most recent and efficient technologies on board», said Didier Trehin, Naval Group’s on-board manager for this first campaign.

After being launched in November 2020, the first sea trial of the FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) is taking place on schedule and in accordance with the company’s contractual commitment to deliver the ship in 2022. Naval Group’s teams and partners’ have been mobilized to meet this milestone despite the Covid crisis.

The FREMM program proceeds according to the schedule established by the last Military Planning Law (LPM). Seven FREMMs have already been delivered to the French Navy between 2012 and 2021. Aquitaine (D650) in 2012, Provence (D652) in 2015, Languedoc (D653) in 2016, Auvergne (D654) in April 2017, Bretagne (D655) in July 2018, Normandie (D651) in July 2019 and Alsace (D656) in April 2021. Internationally, the Mohammed VI (701) was delivered to Morocco in 2014 and the Tahya Misr (FFG-1001) delivrerd to Egypt in 2015.

 

FREMM benefited from the program’s feedback, from the start of the construction

With 3,500 hours at sea per year, the FREMMs’ level of availability at sea is unmatched and is an important source of information. The permanent dialogue between the navies, the DGA, the OCCAR, as well as the construction and maintenance teams, enables Naval Group to propose technologies adapted to the evolution of its customers’ operational needs.

As a result of this operational feedback, the FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) benefits from the deployment of new functions: enhanced cyber capabilities, deployment of Liaison 22 (link between NATO military units), reduced width mast, replacement of the optronic artillery fire control by a radar/optronic fire control, or the integration of a tactical table.

 

A polyvalent FREMM that has mobilized all the know-how of Naval Group and its industrial partners

Multi-mission frigates, designed and built by Naval Group, are polyvalent, stealthy and highly automated ships capable of responding to all types of air, sea, submarine or land threats.

The operational excellence of FREMMs is recognized worldwide, such as by the U.S. Navy, whose 6th Fleet has awarded the Hook’em Award to four FREMMs for their excellence in anti-submarine warfare two years in a row.

A multi-mission frigate represents four million hours of work, about half of which benefits the supply chain and local actors. The design, construction and maintenance of FREMMs mobilize two hundred and fifty unique skills, some of which are so specific that they require up to eleven years of training (carpenter-sheet metal worker, hull welder, boilermaker, etc.).

The frigate will be based in Toulon alongside the FREMM DA Alsace (D656) to provide air defence for major units such as the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier or the amphibious helicopter carrier (PHA), as part of a naval or amphibious strike group. The FREMMs with enhanced air capabilities, Alsace (D656) and Lorraine (D657), are thus able to carry out the same anti-submarine warfare missions as the other FREMMs in the series, in addition to their enhanced air capabilities.

The FREMM DA also use the most advanced weapons and equipment systems such as the Herakles multifunction radar supplied by Thales, the Aster 15 and 30 and Exocet MM 40 missiles, the MU 90 torpedoes and three additional Combat Management System Setis consoles in the «central operations». Like the other FREMMs, the Lorraine will carry the NH90 helicopter (Caiman Marine), whose use is supported by the SAMAHE system supplied by Naval Group.

 

Characteristics

Total length 466 feet/142 m
Width 65.6 feet/20 m
Displacement 6,000 tonnes
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Operation 123 persons (+ 14 people for the helicopter detachment)
Accommodation capacity 165 men and women
Cruising range at 15 knots/17 mph/28 km/h 6,000 nautical miles/6,905 miles/11,112 km

 

The first in «full» version

On February 12, 2022, the technical launch of the fourth Multipurpose Offshore Patrol ship (PPA – Pattugliatore Polivalente d’Altura) «Giovanni delle Bande Nere» (P433) took place at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Riva Trigoso (Genoa).

Giovanni delle Bande Nere (P433)
Fincantieri launches the fourth PPA « Giovanni delle Bande Nere » in Riva Trigoso

This PPA, to be delivered in 2024, is the first in «full» version, which means equipped for a complete defence ability, and the first to be supplied with generator sets by Isotta Fraschini Motori, a Fincantieri subsidiary specialized in the production of diesel engines.

The vessel is part of the renewal plan of the operational lines of the Italian Navy vessels, approved by the Government and Parliament and started in May 2015 («Naval Act») under the aegis of OCCAR (Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation sur l’Armement, the international organization for cooperation on arms).

 

Vessel’s characteristics: PPA – Multipurpose Offshore Patrol Ship

The multipurpose offshore patrol vessel is a highly flexible ship with the capacity to serve multiple functions, ranging from patrol with sea rescue capacity to Civil Protection operations and, in its most highly equipped version, first line fighting vessel. For the seven vessels of the program there will be indeed different configurations of combat system: starting from a «soft» version for the patrol task, integrated for self-defence ability, to a «full» one, as described above. The patrol ship is also capable of operating high-speed vessels such as RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) up to 11 meters/36 feet long through lateral cranes or a hauling ramp located at the far stern.

  • 133 meters/436 feet long
  • Speed more than 31 knots/35.7 mph/57.4 km/h according to vessel configuration and operational conditions
  • 145 crew members and accommodation capacity up to 181 beds
  • Combined diesel and gas turbine propulsion system, i.e. with electric motors for low speeds
  • Capacity to supply drinking water to land

The PPAs will be built at the Integrated Shipyard of Riva Trigoso and Muggiano, with deliveries expected until 2026.

Giovanni delle Bande Nere – Ludovico di Giovanni de’ Medici, also known as Giovanni delle Bande Nere (born April 6, 1498, Forli – died November 30, 1526 Mantua), was an Italian Renaissance «condottiero» (captain of mercenary forces). He belonged to a cadet branch of the Medici.

The light cruiser that during World War II was named after him was launched in 1930. During the conflict, equipped with seaplanes, Bande Nere participated in the Battle of Calabria. Later deployed to the Aegean Sea to attack enemy units, she took part in the battle off Cape Spada, fighting against an Australian cruiser and 5 British destroyers. Successful missions conducted by Bande Nere included the laying of Minefield T, a coastal mine barrier off Tripoli, which caused the sinking of an enemy cruiser and a destroyer, besides severely damaging other two cruisers. This was the most significant result ever achieved thanks to minelaying during WW II. During the Second Battle of Sirte, Bande Nere hit another British cruiser. In 1942, returning from one of her missions, she was fatally torpedoed off the island of Stromboli.

In 2019, during a technical verification and surveillance of the seabed in the Tyrrhenian Sea near Stromboli, the Italian Navy’s minesweeper Vieste found the wreck of the Light Cruiser sunk 77 years before with her brave crew.

Logistic Support Ship

The consortium – Raggruppamento Temporaneo di Impresa (RTI) – led by Fincantieri has signed with OCCAR (Organisation Conjointe de Cooperation sur l’Armement, the international organization for joint armament cooperation) a contract for the construction of a second Logistic Support Ship (LSS) for the Italian Navy, which also includes the option for a third ship.

Logistic Support Ship (LSS)
Fincantieri to build a second LSS unit for the Italian Navy

The LSS will be entirely built at the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard, with delivery scheduled for 2025. The value of the contract is approximately 410 million euros including the combat system.

The order also includes the provision of support over the lifecycle of the vessel in the first ten years, divided into logistics and in-service support (maintenance), as well as the supply of naval components and machinery produced by Fincantieri Mechanical Systems and Components Unit, including shaft lines, steering system, manoeuvring thrusters, fin stabilizers and other handling systems.

As part of the multi-year program aimed at safeguarding Italy’s Defence at-sea capacity (known as the «Naval Act»), Fincantieri is currently building seven multi-purpose offshore patrol vessels (PPA) and the «Trieste» Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD). Last March, it delivered the «Vulcano» LSS, a project that was also acquired by the French Navy for the definition of the Flotlog programme, a series of units built in partnership with the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard.

The basic characteristic common to all three classes of ships is their very high level of innovation, which makes them extremely flexible in their various profiles of use with a high degree of efficiency. Most importantly, it will be possible to use these units in a complementary way even for non-military-related activities, such as, for example, supporting civil protection in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. Moreover, their environmental impact is low, thanks to advanced low pollution emission generators and electric-drive propulsion motors and biological waste control systems.

 

LSS – Logistic Support Ship

The LSS is a vessel that provides logistics support to the fleet, endowed with hospital and healthcare capabilities thanks to the presence of a fully equipped hospital of approximately 800 square metres/8,611 square feet, which includes: 2 operating rooms with pre-anaesthesia, a radiology room, a dentist’s office, a gynecological office, 2 emergency rooms, a clinical diagnosis lab and blood bank, an intensive care room, a CT scan room, and a burns room. The ship combines the ability to transport and transfer to other transport vessels liquid cargo (diesel fuel, jet fuel, fresh water) and solid cargo (spare parts, food and ammunitions) and to perform at sea repairs and maintenance work for other vessels. The defence systems are limited to the capacity of command and control in tactical scenarios, communications, and non-lethal dissuasive defence systems. The LSS is also capable of embarking more complex defence systems and becoming a platform for intelligence and electronic warfare systems.

  • 193 metres/633 feet long
  • Top speed approximately 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h
  • 235 persons including crew and specialists
  • Capacity to supply drinking water to land for approximately 6,000 people
  • Capacity to provide electricity to land with 2,500 kW of power
  • Possibility of embarking up to 28 ISO 20 modules, including residential and healthcare modules
  • Capacity to perform rescues at sea, through recovery and seabed operations (the ship is equipped with two 30-tonne offshore cranes)
  • Base for rescue operations via 2 helicopters and special vessels (2 RHIBs and 2 tenders) (LSS)

Alsace

The 16th April 2021 in Toulon, in presence of the French Minister of the Armed forces Florence Parly, Naval Group delivered the FREMM DA Alsace (D656), in accordance with its schedule commitments and expected performances. Intended for the French navy, Alsace (D656) is the first of the two air defence frigates with enhanced air defence capability and the seventh FREMM multimissions frigate ordered by OCCAR for the French defence procurement agency (Direction générale de l’armement – DGA) for the French Navy.

Alsace (D656)
Naval Group delivers the FREMM DA frigate Alsace (D656)

FREMM DA Alsace (D656) is the first frigate with enhanced air defence capability. Her role will be the anti-aircraft defence of major units such as the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier, or that of PHA-type landing helicopter docks, within the framework of a naval air and amphibious group.

Despite the health crisis, the FREMM DA Alsace (D656) is being delivered on schedule by shifts from Naval Group and its industrial partners. Benefiting from the experience acquired on the FREMM already delivered, it also incorporates several capability upgrades in response to rapidly changing technologies (communications, cyber defense, etc.).

The main milestones of FREMM DA Alsace (D656):

  • February 2018: Key laying of the first block;
  • April 2019: Floating out of construction dock;
  • October 2020: First sea trial;
  • 16 April 2021: Delivery in Toulon.

 

An industrial success that mobilises the skills of the entire naval industry

The FREMM program mobilises many skills and hundreds different trades including architects, boilermakers, welders, mechanics, systems engineers, etc.

Like the other units of the FREMM series, Alsace (D656) represents around three million working hours from conception to delivery, half of these working hours are provided by Naval Group sites. In addition to Lorient where the frigate is designed and assembled, Toulon-Ollioules and Paris-Bagneux are also involved for the combat system, Nantes-Indret for the propulsion, Angoulême-Ruelle for the equipment, and Saint-Tropez for the underwater weapons.

The other half of the work hours is accounted for by Naval Group’s partners and subcontractors. Indeed, the FREMM program benefits from the best equipment on the market and calls on a large number of companies, including Thales, MBDA, Sagem, Jeumont, MTU, Oto Melara and Avio.

Alsace (D656) will be based in Toulon, where the teams of the Services Department will deploy all their industrial resources and skills to ensure the operational availability of this ship.

«We are very pleased to be here in Toulon for the delivery, on schedule despite the health crisis, of this first FREMM multimissions frigate with enhanced air defense capability. I would like to express Naval Group’s gratitude to our clients, who have placed their trust in us and are working with us on a daily basis to build these versatile frigates. Alsace (D656) has the same exceptional anti-submarine capabilities as the previous units of the FREMM series but with this new version, the French Navy will benefit from strengthened air defense capabilities, in accordance with the commitments of the military programming law», Pierre Eric Pommellet, chairman and CEO.

Alsace
First multimissions frigate with enhanced air defence capability

 

A ten frigates program

Since 2005, when OCCAR entrusted Naval Group the industrial production of the FREMM program for France, Naval Group has built nine ships, seven for the French Navy and two for the Royal Moroccan Navy and the Royal Egyptian Navy, respectively. The eighth and last FREMM DA for France is scheduled in 2022.

  • Aquitaine (D650): November 2012
  • Mohammed VI (701) for the Royal Moroccan Navy: 2014
  • Provence (D652): June 2015
  • ENS Tahya Misr (FFG-1001): for the Royal Egyptian Navy: 2015
  • Languedoc (D653): March 2016
  • Auvergne (D654): April 2017
  • Bretagne (D655): July 2018
  • Normandie (D651): July 2019
  • Lorraine (D657): 20221

 

FREMM DA Alsace (D656) uses the most advanced weapon systems and equipment

Heavily armed like all FREMM frigates, Alsace (D656) was designed to answer the operational requirements of the French Navy. She benefits from the continuous evolution intrinsic to the FREMM program to incorporate the latest technological developments and integrates the latest developments ordered by OCCAR, according to an unchanged delivery schedule.

The architecture of the first units of the FREMM series designed by Naval Group has been retained. What characterises the FREMM Alsace is her increased anti-air warfare capabilities.

The FREMM DA uses the most advanced weapons systems and equipment, such as the Herakles multifunction radar, the Aster 15 and 30 and Exocet MM 40 missiles and the MU 90 torpedoes. Like the other units of the FREMM series, she carries the NH90 helicopter (Caïman Marine), whose use is supported by the SAMAHE system supplied by Naval Group.

The performance of her combat system is strengthened with increased radar and communication capabilities, a new radar and electro-optical fire control system as well as Naval Group SETIS Combat Management System equipped with specific air defense functions.

 

FREMM DA Technical features

Overall length 142 metres/466 feet
Width 20 metres/65.6 feet
Displacement 6000 tons
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Accommodation capacity 165 peoples
Autonomy 6,000 NM/6,905 miles/11,112 km at 15 knots/17 mph/28 km/h

 

FREMM DA Weapons systems

All units of the FREMM series with enhanced air defence capability can deploy:

  • 8 anti-ships missiles Excocet MM40 Block 3;
  • 32 missiles Aster in vertical launch system Sylver;
  • 1 main naval-gun 76-mm;
  • 4 machine guns 12.7-mm;
  • 19 MU90 torpedo;
  • 1 Caïman naval warfare helicopter;
  • 2 Narwhal 20-mm remotely-operated naval weapon.
D656
Infographic

FREMM Lorraine

Naval Group has launched the FREMM Lorraine (D657) in Lorient on Friday 13th November. This ship was ordered by the French General Directorate of Armament (DGA) on behalf of the French Navy. The program management is entrusted to the Organization for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR). The FREMM Lorraine (D657) is the tenth unit of the FREMM series produced by Naval Group, and the eighth and last one added to the French Navy’s fleet.

Lorraine (D657)
Naval Group launches the FREMM Lorraine (D657), the second frigate offering an enhanced air defence capability

It is also the second FREMM frigate of the FREMM DA type, presenting an enhanced air defence capability.

The French Minister of Armed Forces (Minister of Defence) Florence Parly, Admiral Pierre Vandier, Chief of Staff of the French Navy, and General Engineer Emmanuelle Thivillier, in charge of naval programs at the French General Directorate of Armament (DGA) as well as the Chairman and CEO of Naval Group, Pierre Eric Pommellet, alongside employees from the Lorient site participated to the launching ceremony.

 

The launch of the eighth French Navy’s FREMM

Fifty-four months after the start of the production, the FREMM DA Lorraine (D657) left the construction form of Naval Group site in Lorient. This operation took place on Friday 13th November 2020, fully complying with the schedule set by the Military Planning Law, while respecting the safety and health rules currently enforced.

Technical adaptations have been made on both FREMM DA such as a more powerful multifunction radar supplied by Thales, enhanced communications, three additional consoles of the Setis Combat Management System in the «central operations center» with an enhanced air defence capability through the use of Aster 15 and Aster 30 missiles. The FREMM DA also benefits from a new mast, optimized to increase detection performance. In addition to performing the same anti-submarine warfare missions as the previous FREMMs, the FREMM DAs will be responsible for the air defence of major units: Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier, or amphibious helicopter carriers (PHA) as part of the naval or amphibious air group.

More generally, the FREMM frigates integrate the evolution of systems over time to ensure the latest units of the series benefit from the latest technologies such as: additional cyber capabilities, deployment of Liaison 22 (liaison between NATO military units), integration of a tactical digital table, etc.

 

Meeting the operational requirements of the French Armament Procurement Agency (DGA)

«Throughout this demanding program, we have maintained close ties with our customer, in order to best respond to the expectations and the technological challenges regarding the onboard innovations. This feedback led us to change our industrial organization. Modular construction, supply chain optimization and block pre-fabrication have reduced construction lead times and, ultimately, production costs. As a result, we have gained in efficiency and performance, while at the same time improving the working conditions of our employees, which has led to a considerable reduction in accidents at work. We are proud to launch today the latest French FREMM»! declared Laurent Espinasse, Executive Vice-President for Industry at Naval Group.

Naval Group’s site in Lorient offers industrial infrastructures that enable us to meet the technical and technological challenges of the latest generations of military ships, including a 15,000 m2 covered construction form.

The design tools and methods have evolved considerably during the FREMM program thanks to virtual reality. All of the ship’s data, including equipment operating data, is integrated into a digital mock-up. The infrastructures have also been modernized, including the extension and renovation of the construction nave, the installation of three covered paint booths and the extension of the quay.

 

Ensuring the preservation of key competencies

To deliver frigates with the required military performance, Naval Group has mobilized no less than 250 skills throughout the program. 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…

Naval Group promotes the recruitment of young talents and has recruited 400 work-study students since the beginning of the year and even during the sanitary crisis. This is 50 more than in 2019 and Naval Group site in Lorient is home to 58 of them.

Naval Group is also implementing specific training programs to develop these rare and unique skills, through the introduction of the certificate of joint qualification of metallurgy (CQPM). This certification training, takes place alternatively in a training organization and in industrial workshops over twelve months. A CQPM carpenter-sheet metal worker was opened in September 2019, in collaboration with the IUMM of Lorient, at a Naval Group site in Lorient.

 

Technical characteristics of FREMM DA

The FREMM program has been running on a stable schedule since the last Military Planning Law. Eight units of the FREMM series have been delivered between 2012 and 2019. Aquitaine (D650) in 2012, Provence (D652) in 2015, Languedoc (D653) in 2016, Auvergne (D654) in April 2017, Bretagne (D655) in July 2018 and Normandie (D651) in July 2019. Alsace (D656) was launched on April 18, 2019 and will be delivered in 2021. Internationally, the Mohammed VI (701) was delivered to Morocco in 2014 and the Tahya Misr (FFG-1001) was delivered in Egypt in 2015.

FREMM DA Alsace (D656) is heavily armed and uses the most powerful weapons systems and equipment such as the Herakles multifunction radar, the Aster 15 and 30 and Exocet MM 40 missiles and the MU 90 torpedoes. The performance of her combat system is enhanced with increased radar and communication capabilities, new radar and electro-optical fire control and a SETIS Combat Management System with specific air defence functions.

 

Characteristics

Total length 466 feet/142 m
Width 65.6 feet/20 m
Displacement 6,000 tonnes
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Operation 123 persons (+ 14 people for the helicopter detachment)
Accommodation capacity 165 men and women
Cruising range at 15 knots/17 mph/28 km/h 6,000 nautical miles/6,905 miles/11,112 km

 

FLOTLOG program

The steel cutting of the first of four forward sections for as many logistic support units LSS (Logistic Support Ship) ordered by Chantiers de l’Atlantique to Fincantieri under the FLOTLOG program («Flotte logistique») took place at the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard.

The Group will build for Chantiers de l’Atlantique, the forward sections of the four logistic support ships under the Franco-Italian LSS program led by OCCAR

The sections will be built at the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard with deliveries scheduled between 2021 and 2027.

The FLOTLOG program consists in the construction of four Logistic Support Ships (LSS), destined to the French Navy, by the temporary consortium between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group under the Franco-Italian LSS Program led by OCCAR (Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation) on behalf of DGA, the French Armament General Directorate, and its Italian counterpart, NAVARM (Italian Ministry of Defense).

This cooperation between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Fincantieri is part of the broader Franco-Italian alliance in the naval surface ship domain.

The highly innovative LSS program, similarly to the units of the multi-year program for the renewal of the Italian Navy’s fleet, provides a considerable degree of efficiency and flexibility in serving different mission profiles.

Furthermore, the LSS unit combines features of transportation and transfer to other vessels of both liquid (diesel fuel, jet fuel, fresh water) and solid loads (emergency spare parts, food and ammunitions).

Replenishment Vessel

The first steel plate of the hull of the first of the four new Bâtiments Ravitailleurs de Force (BRF) – replenishment vessels – of the French Navy has been cut on May 18, 2020 during a ceremony held in the machining workshop of Chantiers de l’Atlantique, in presence of Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces, and Admiral Prazuck, Chief of French Navy. This ceremony marked symbolically the start of the construction of the first vessel of the Flotte logistique (FLOTLOG) program.

The construction of the first new replenishment vessel for the French Navy starts at Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard, in cooperation with Naval Group

The order for the construction of the four ships was notified in January 2019 to the temporary association of companies formed by Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group. Deliveries are scheduled from end 2022 to 2029. This order for the French Navy is part of a Franco-Italian program led by Organisation Conjointe de Coopération en matière d’ARmement (OCCAR), on behalf of Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA), the French Defence Procurement Agency, and its Italian counterpart Naval Armaments Directorate (NAVARM).

The BRF with a capacity of 13,000 m3 have a mission of logistical support of the combat vessels of the French Navy. They carry fuel, ammunition, spare parts, as well as food for the vessels.

Compliant with international standards, their characteristics are adapted to their specific missions of support to the aviation group constituted around the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, flagship of the naval air force group.

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.

«We are at the very start of a new industrial story, which will feature once again our know how in design, building and integration of cutting edge technologies», states Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique. «This is also an excellent opportunity to demonstrate our complementarity of our businesses with those of our partner Naval Group».

Naval Group is responsible for the design, development and integration of the military systems of the platform. The combat system of the four ships, whose architecture is based on the Polaris Combat Management System of Naval Group, ensures the protection against close threats and the fight against asymmetric threats.

«Naval Group is proud to stand once again by Chantiers de l’Atlantique in the frame of this European program. This cooperation brings together the best civilian and naval expertise and will benefit our customers both on economic and operational aspects», highlights Pierre-Eric Pommelet, Naval Group CEO.

 

Main Characteristics of the vessels

Full loaded displacement 31,000 tonnes
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 tonnes
Freight volume 13,000 m3
Total installed capacity 24 MW