3 minute readDCNS at DefExpo

Scorpene submarine | Image: DCNS

Scorpene submarine | Image: DCNS

French warship builder DCNS will return to DefExpo this week, highlighting a wide spectrum of systems and platforms that include aircraft carriers, frigates and submarines.

The company, best known in India for its Scorpene submarine, six of which are under construction at Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL) in Mumbai, will unsurprisingly be focusing on this vessel, which is also in contention for the Indian Navy’s next order for six submarines.

A company statement issued last week, said, “The hulls of the six submarines are completed. The outfitting of these hull sections is now progressing as per schedule. The first-of-class P-75 built in MDL should be ready to start harbor tests and sea trials as per schedule indicated by MDL. The first Scorpene submarine is to be commissioned in 2015.”

DCNS clearly believes it has an advantage over other suppliers because of its head start. “At DefExpo, DCNS local presence will be strong with DCNS India representatives explaining the successful indigenization for the P-75 program in India,” said the statement, which quoted Bernard Buisson, Managing Director of DCNS India, as saying, “DefExpo is a very important platform for DCNS to showcase the services we can provide to our Customers through genuine transfer of technology.”

DCNS will also be displaying the SUBTICS® combat system and its optional MESMA AIP (Air Independent Propulsion) section, in which it has been trying to interest the Indian Navy.

Here’s what DCNS says about SUBTICS®:

It combines long-range capabilities in all navigation conditions with powerful weapons (torpedoes, anti-ship missile, counter-measures, land-attack capability). As a fully-integrated system, all functions are operated from Multifunction Common Consoles and its open architecture and modularity guarantee that the system can be adapted to every type of submarines and configured according to operational requirements. It can also be upgraded during its lifetime to fulfill new missions and keep its operational superiority.

But besides the Scorpene, the company will also be showing off other products at Hall 12, Booth 12.8.

The next ‘Aha’ generator will be the Barracuda nuclear submarine, the first-of-class of which, SSN Suffren, will begin sea trials only in 2016.

The next interesting showpiece will be the Mistral-class Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD), which has been ordered by the Russian Navy as well (which, as we know, is a major break from traditional Russian reliance on indigenous technologies), besides the three vessels already in service in the French Navy.

DCNS is offering the Mistral-class for the Indian Navy’s Landing Platform Dock (LPD) acquisition program and they say that it can act as a troop carrier, hospital ship, Humanitarian Aid and Disaster relief (HADR), conduct amphibious operations as well perform the functions of a command vessel.

Further design coolness at the DCNS booth at DefExpo will be provided by the Evolved Aircraft Carrier (DEAC) concept.

Here’s what the company says:

Providing power projection, sea control and air defense and based on French Navy CVN Charles de Gaulle’s combat proven design and aviation system, the DEAC is compatible with all CTOL aircrafts (including Airborne Early Warning Aircraft) and features the latest technologies including cutting-edge Combat System (SETIS®), UAV integration, advanced conventional propulsion and state-of-the-art platform stabilization system (SATRAP/COGITE). In addition to the design, DCNS offers customized transfer of technology, material packages, dedicated infrastructures development (i.e. naval base and construction/maintenance shipyard) as well as life support solutions.

And then there’s the FREMM frigate, which (let’s face it) repeat visitors to DefExpo would remember from previous years.

The warship manufacturer is also showcasing the BRAVE replenishment and support vessel, which (we imagine) performs functions similar to INS Deepak and INS Shakti, built by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri and commissioned into the Indian Navy a few years back.

Besides these, visitors will also be able to learn more about the CONTRALTO®/CANTO® torpedo defense system and the MU90 lightweight torpedo.

So what do you think?