The French Arms Directorate [DGA] reported yesterday, Monday, that their next nuclear submarine, the Duguay-Trouin, has started up the nuclear boiler room. The DGA identifies this event as the foundation of the entire Barracuda project.
“A new milestone for the Barracuda program, piloted by the DGA for the benefit of the French Navy, with the commissioning of the nuclear boiler room of Duguay-Trouin, the second submarine in the series, is currently being completed. improved and tested in Cherbourg,” the DGA stated.
The launch of the nuclear boiler room, known as “divergence”, involves the first triggering of a controlled nuclear reaction within the nuclear reactor that propels the ship. This phase will be followed by sea trials of the SNA before delivery in 2023.
The SNA Barracuda’s nuclear propulsion gives them a substantial and arbitrary radius of action. More flexible than previous generation SNAs, they can deploy special forces and strike ground targets from hundreds of kilometers away.
The nuclear boiler room of the submarines of the Barracuda program was developed under the direction of the French Atomic Energy Commission project, supported by Technic Atome and the Naval Group.
According to the plan of the French Ministry of Defense, France will receive six Barracuda-class submarines by 2030. In addition to the Duguay-Trouin and Suffren submarines already in service, France expects the De Grasse, Tourville submarines. , Rubis and Casabianca in the following years.
The Barracuda-class multirole nuclear submarines will replace the Rubis-class submarines, built in the 1980s in the French Navy. In 2006, the French government signed a contract with DCNS [now Naval Group] to supply the national fleet with six nuclear submarines. The cost of the transaction is estimated at 8 billion euros.
The Suffren was commissioned in December 2007 and was scheduled to enter service in 2016, but due to various problems, the construction dates had to be revised several times. In early August 2019, the Suffren was launched and in December the nuclear reactor on board the submarine was commissioned.
Data and weaponry
The displacement of submarines of the Barracuda type is 5,300 tons [area – 4,700 tons], the length (length) of the hull – 99 meters, the diameter – (beam) 8.8 meters. The maximum depth of immersion is more than 350 meters, and the speed under water is more than 25 knots. Autonomy – 50 days. The crew is 65 people. Also on board can accommodate up to 15 MTR fighters.
The Suffren submarine is equipped with four 533mm carriers for heavy-duty F21 torpedoes. The arsenal includes upgraded SM-39 Exocet anti-ship missiles and Naval Scalp cruise missiles to destroy coastal infrastructure.