Thales is proud to be onboard the FREMM Aquitaine, the first in a world-class series of frigates to be put to water this week in preparation for further testing. Thales systems comprise a significant portion of the operational value of these frigates, for which prime contracting duties for shipbuilding and combat systems management are handled by DCNS in France.
FREMM is a European programme for multi-mission frigates launched in 2005 by France (Frégate Européenne Multi-Mission) and Italy (Fregata Europea Multi-Missione). Run by the European joint armaments cooperation organisation, OCCAR, the objective of this programme is to replace existing navy frigates with new 6,000-tonne frigates equipped with cutting-edge warfare systems.
FREMM is the European frigate of the future and Thales systems make a significant contribution to its multi-mission capabilities. Thales systems onboard the Aquitaine include a bow and towed array sonar suite, the Herakles multifunction radar, the Artemis infrared search and track system, as well as electronic warfare and communications systems.
The frigate’s multi-mission capabilities allow it to act alone as a powerful deterrent asset or to draw on its state-of-the-art Thales communications systems to pursue action as part of an inter-allied force. This vessel also has unrivalled stealth capacity, a crucial advantage for enhancing the success and safety of missions.
Under this programme, France has to date ordered 11 frigates, consisting of nine antisubmarine warfare (ASW) versions and two anti-air versions (FREDA). The Aquitaine, an ASW version, is the first of these frigates to be put to water.