Ships invisible in the French style

Last week it became clear that the French defense industry in the tender offer announced by the Navy of Brazil, a complete package consisting of multi-purpose patrol ships, frigates and tankers. Entering into a rigid konkurentnst with staff from England and Italy, the French shipbuilders want to put "a race" their new generation of naval shipbuilding, including surface ships, made with the widespread introduction of technology "stealth".


"The French proposal will be based on the specific requirements established by the Brazilian military, have expressed a desire to acquire the watchdog ship near sea areas, multi-purpose frigate and a tanker to ensure the replenishment of warships and vessels supplies of fuel into the sea, "- said Sept. 20 at a press conference, a representative of the French General Delegation for Armaments (DGA). Presumably Brazilian admirals plan to buy 5 patrol ships and frigates, and one bunker tanker. As a multi-purpose frigate Paris wants to offer some modified version of the type frigate FREMM, which are currently being built — in various configurations — for the French Navy and the government of Spain, and by "patrol" fall Corvettes URO like "Gouvind."

It must be stressed that the Franco-Brazilian cooperation in the field of naval arms in the near future is developing more and more intense. So, for example, on September 16 on the ground of the French shipbuilding company DCNS in the town of Lorient opened Design Center for the training of engineers and officers of the Navy military-industrial complex in Brazil involved in the program of creation of the first Brazilian nuclear submarine. Over the next 18 months, 30 Brazilian professionals will learn from the French shipbuilders experience gained in the process of designing the latest family of non-nuclear submarines "Scorpene". Earlier, the Brazilian Navy has already received from the French four such submarines.

Head of the international cooperation of the French Navy, Admiral Jorge Bossel in this regard, said that "this center is designed to assist Brazil in the design of non-nuclear part of the construction of the first nuclear submarine, the state, which is due to enter into service in the Navy in 2025."

"JOINT" Fregat

Brazil proposed FREMM frigate type is pretty fun prototype zabugornoy naval equipment (TDC), the first in the sense that this is another result of intra-European cooperation in the development and mass production of AMSE. The multinational character ship clear from its very name — FREMM (acronym for «Fregates Europeennes MultiMissions», or in French "European multipurpose frigates").

In this case, at the start of the programs from the project manager from the French DGA Frank Mestre even said that it is "the most fundamental and Innovative European project in the naval area since the second world war." This is no exaggeration: Unlike other multi-national shipbuilding programs from frigate (TIR) of the "Horizon", on which the French and Italian navies built four ships instead of the eight planned, and the English of applets and just got out of the Franco-Italian FREMM programm continues to gain adherents — in the years 2007-2009 to the basic participants joined Morocco (one ship) and Greece (6 frigates with guided missiles).

The official start of program there was given in October 2002, when an agreement of intent on the joint development and construction of a large series of ships of class "frigate" signed the defense ministers of France and Italy. With 2 months later, was formed and the Franco-Italian consortium — on the basis of the French company "Armaris" (cooperative project companies DCN and "Thales", had a bit of it equal, to this day, the company has completed its work and, together with the naval division "Thales" became the member of the company DCNS) and the Italian "Orrizonte Sistemi Nava" (JV "Fincantieri" with a 51% stake, and the "Finmeccanica", which owns 49%), which is a bit later received a contract starting at 27 frigates FREMM: 10 for Italy and 17 in France. However, the final, has a production contract for the first batch of 14 ships (France — 8, Italy — 6) was signed by the heads of the military departments 2-states only October 25, 2004: the construction of ships for the French Navy was assigned to a shipyard DCN in Lorient, and Italian frigates will build enterprise "Fincantieri". Then the number of ordered ships, in general, has been reduced to 11 for France and 10 for Italy.


The project FREMM French and Italian shipbuilders sought to bring all of its production in this area, with the result that they were able to make really functional ship in whose design incorporates the principle of modularity. The latter, however, is limited to the boundaries of the shipyard — "sharpen» FREMM under a puzzle, anti-variant or a "general-purpose ship" only factory-builder. In the first case frigate UB will have more in store torpedoes (both countries have taken recent development of "Evrotorp" — torpedo MU90) and towed to fade. And in the 2nd — a complex of different weapons with cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles, more powerful gun mount (127-mm AU instead of 76-mm), also having the ability to transport, landing and take on board a group of special forces of up to 25 people, why on board will hold two-speed motor boats of the "Zodiac."

In addition, after the premature closure of programs from frigates with guided missiles (AD) of the "Horizon" French Navy initiated the development of a further modification, FREMM, which received the designation FREDA (from "Fregates de aeriennes defense" in French — "air defense frigate") and aimed at providing air defense / missile naval forces and convoys of ships, why the ships get enhanced anti-aircraft missile weaponry.

But such specialization still secondary — FREMM class ships initially been considered by developers and manufacturers as "multipurpose frigates with guided missiles" capable, if necessary, to address the full range of tasks normally assigned to the ships of the class. For this purpose, namely, both versions will be equipped FREMM artillery and missile complexes (anti-ship and anti-aircraft) guns, and the functionality of the electronic weapons. Specifically, it allowed the frigate as opposed to special frigates with guided missiles (AD) of the "Horizon" successfully through a period of decline in orders from the main participants applets and even capture new customers.

The base platform of ships built for the Navy different countries is about 90-95% of the ship's weapons and systems, and the rest — a special "national differences", which, in general, not fundamentally. Just respective national military-industrial complex customer countries "break" the road to board their frigates to their development: for example, the French ships armed with anti-ship missiles as the French "Exocet" and Italian — complex "Otomat" similar purpose, but designed by the Italian defense industry. As the ship-based helicopter elected NH-90, but the Italian frigate, he will be only one, and the French decided that you need to reserve a place and for the second. Has differences and the "brain" of the ships — if the French frigate received Combat Information Control System (CICS) under the Central Government type SETIS (Ship Enhanced Tactical Informat
ion System, in other words "improved naval tactical data system"), made on the basis of CICS FR DMG / defense of the "Horizon", the Italians have installed on their own ships CICS federal submission made on the basis of a system installed on the new Italian aircraft carrier "Cavour".

HOW TO SHIP inconspicuous

A distinctive feature of all modifications FREMM frigates with guided missiles such as the widespread use of technology is a "stealth", this could significantly reduce the visibility of the ships radar, acoustic, infrared and electric spectra, contours of the hull and superstructure are made smooth, the designers have avoided all of the dihedral or triangular piece with a 90 — degree kink, tucked away inside the largest number of weapons systems, radio equipment and vessels, most of the holes in the hull and sides closed watertight light valves, power plant units are mounted on anti-vibration platforms, ship propellers installed the latest design and a new system of demagnetization. In addition, the ships are of the highest level of automation of the management and implementation of various ship systems and weapons, which — as well as elements of "stealth" — had previously been successfully tested on a family of French frigates "Lafayette", which became in the last two decades, some of the more relevant this class of surface ships in the world. In the middle of the most recognizable buyers of last modification "Lafayette" — Singapore and Saudi Arabia.

Last signed a contract for three frigates with guided missiles such as "Al-Riyadh" (code F3000S, programm "Savary II»), the first of them entered the combat strength of the state in the middle of the Navy in 2002. These ships have a total displacement of 4,650 tons, a length of 135 meters, a width of 17.2 meters and a draft of 4.1 meters, designed to meet the specific requirements of the customer. They are able to not only beat well with surface ships and submarines of the enemy, and provide air and missile defense of individual ships, troops and warships to protect convoys from attack, and different means of air attack.

The composition of his arms included 76-mm gun mount "Super Rapid" eight PU ASM "Exocet» MM40 Block 2, AAMS "Aster 15" with under deck container OHR like "Silver A43" (the first case of export of the SAM system, fire control system which, according to developers, is able to track down immediately to 300 aerial targets and missiles can be used in the "anti-missile mode" — at a distance of 15 km or in the standard "defense mode" — at a distance of 30 km), four 533-mm torpedo tubes to fire anti-submarine torpedoes ECAN F17P (intensive / passive CLO Range — 20 km, maximum speed — 40 knots, warhead weight — 250 kg), a functional radar system "Arabelle" with a three-axis radar range of I / J with a phased array antenna and a built- MSA also two coordinate long-range radar ORC DRBV 26D «Jupiter» II spectrum D, the active low-frequency is lowered to fade CAPTAS 20 UMS 4223 and improved electronic warfare systems, communications and data exchange. In the stern of the ship is equipped with runway and hangar for the ship-based helicopter stationary 10-ton class, with thanks in addition to the standard set Stabilizers newest automatic system to reduce the impact of longitudinal and pitching STAF type of helicopter operation is likely at sea up to and including 6 points. The base is "brains" of the Saudi frigate type of CICS SENIT 7, which is a much improved version of CICS type "Tavitak 2000".

It should be highlighted that the design of the frigates with guided missiles such as "Al-Riyadh" was carried out since the introduction of CAD-technology — the French even call them the "first truly digital ships." The company PTC, DCN has granted its software version CADDS 5, installed 150 workstations at its production facilities, and another 70 — in enterprises subcontracting companies. Use of the latest computer-aided design methods allow an estimated developers, 17% lower development time ship, if associated with the design basis of the family of ships "Lafayette."

"Stealth" for the poor

But not many options to customers pockets frigate types of "Lafayette" or even more so FREMM, for their DCNS has developed a "cheap" and light vehicles — Multi-purpose corvettes URO family "Gouvind" with a displacement of 1,500 to 2,500 tons and a length of 90 to 105 meters , positioned the company as a patrol ships of the littoral zone. Now these were more TDC standards are needed in countries facing the prospect of numerous threats to marine areas: both conventional and asymmetric (piracy, terrorism).

In the arms of the ships — regardless of the options — include: anti-ship ("Exocet", "Harpoon" or RBS-15 Mk3, eight PU) and zenith ("Mika» RF or "Aster 15", OHR to 16 missiles) missile systems, 76 — and 20-mm gun mount, several UAV helicopter or a 10-ton class, and unmanned surface and underwater vehicles for different purposes. Especially for the corvettes was developed CICS "Polaris" — an improved version of CICS family SENIT. Distinctive features of the ship are the introduction of water-jet (likely setting and normal propellers), the absence of the usual dymoprovodov in the superstructure (removal of products of combustion power plant carried out at the waterline), the placement of all radar and optoelectronic devices on a single mast, ship's bridge with a radial survey, the ability to support the actions of special operations forces without significant retrofitting.

At the current time, the developer is offering four basic options: corvette "control aqua space" with a displacement of about 1,000 tons, the corvette "show the flag" (2000 tons), "shock" corvette (2,000 tons), and multi-purpose corvette (2,500 tons). The first modification of the developer in an active manner decided to implement "the iron" — May 9, 2010 was laid "Hermes", which has displacement of 1,100 tons and was created to meet the challenges in the territorial waters and exclusive economic zone. According to the views of management DCNS, in today's market warships unrealistic "to successfully implement a corvette or frigate, if there is no positive operating experience in the Navy world level." The French Navy also agreed to after the construction of the corvette to take it into trial operation.


Almost FREMM and "Gouvind" — these are the same "ship of the XXI Century", which constantly speak Russian admirals. And many of the naval command understands this perfectly, showing an active interest in it. Well, the developer himself is making efforts to promote Huge corvettes of the family in different regions of the planet, including the country classic "Russian zone of interests", such as the countries of the Caspian region. What's more — is now possible customers already proposed a new family of 3 frigates with guided missiles, which are implemented in a more fortunate generation of projects and FREMM "Gouvind." And if the Russian shipbuilders, military and political control does not take appropriate measures to strengthen the position of the upcoming Russian shipbuilding industry on the international market, TDC, then we recently will be a very nasty surprise in the form of lost markets and fallen export revenues.

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