PARIS (France), March 21, 2018, Author: Galina Zdravkova (Bm), Photo by Lionel Bonaventure/AFP via Getty Images
The first suppliers under the €3.8 billion FTI (Frégates de taille intermédiaire; in English: Frigates of intermediate size) military program for the French Navy are already selected by Naval Group. This was announced by the shipbuilder on 20th March 2018, reported Defense News.
The selected suppliers and subcontractors are the following:
• Axima – responsible for the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC);
• CNIM – responsible for the doors, sonars and torpedoes;
• iXblue – responsible for the navigation systems;
• Leonardo – responsible for the medium-calibre 76 mm cannon;
• MBDA – responsible for the missile launchers integration;
• MTU – responsible for the diesel engines;
• Safran Electronics & Defense – responsible for their Paseo XLR extra long-range surveillance electro-optical system;
• Thales – responsible for the sonars, electronic warfare, identification friend or foe, and communications.
Under a separate agreement with the DGA, Thales will supply the Sea Fire multifunction naval radar as well.
“We expect a lot from our suppliers,” said Frédéric Massa, Naval Group’s director of purchasing. “Their innovative and competitive solutions will contribute to delivering technological superiority on the operational theatre.”
Naval Group (rebranded from DCNS on 28th June 2017) is a major industrial actor in naval defence in France and a world leader in the same sector. Under the FTI program, Naval Group and Thales are the prime contractors, sharing the responsibility between the naval shipbuilder and electronics specialist.
The contract for the building of five 4,200-ton intermediate frigates (the FTI program) was awarded to Naval Group and Thales by the DGA (the French Government defence procurement office) and signed on 20th April 2017.
“The contract was awarded to DCNS and Thales (for the radar related activities) by the Direction Générale de l’Armement 20 April 2017,” the DGA announced on its website on 21st April 2017. “The first delivery is set for 2023.”
The new warships are intended for carrying of special forces units, as well as for air defence, anti-submarine warfare, and anti-ship missions. They will carry a flying drone or a helicopter and will be armed with MBDA Aster 30 surface-to-air missiles.