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DCNS floats out fifth FREMM frigate for French Navy

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Latest FREMM frigate "Bretagne" being floated out. A DCNS photo

LORIENT, FRANCE (BNS): Shipbuilder DCNS has floated out the fifth FREMM multi-role frigate being built for the French Navy.

The new warship, named "Bretagne", was floated at DCNS's Lorient facility on September 16.

"This floating, six months after the delivery of the FREMM "Languedoc" on 16 March 2016, demonstrates DCNS's capacity to carry out efficient series production, ensuring that it can deliver six frigates to the French Navy before mid-2019," the shipbuilder said.

The French Navy has already received first three frigates of the class – "Aquitaine" in 2012, "Provence" in 2015 and "Languedoc" in 2016.

The fourth frigate, "Auvergne", is getting ready to start sea trials at the end of September 2016, while the assembly for the sixth and final frigate, "Normandie", is about to start.

"Bretagne" is the seventh frigate in the FREMM programme and fifth in the series ordered by OCCAR (Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation) on behalf of the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) for the French Navy.

The two other such platforms have been sold to export customers – the Royal Moroccan Navy and the Egyptian Navy.

The FREMM family of frigates with technically advanced features is being built to counter all threats emanating from air, sea or land. With a displacement of 6,000 tons and a length of 142-m, the vessel can cruise at a speed of 27 knots.

Each warship will carry state-of-the-art weapons and systems including the MdCN cruise missiles, Aster anti-air missiles, Exocet MM40 anti-ship missiles and MU90 torpedoes. The sensor suite of the frigate is designed around the Herakles multi-function radar with a range of more than 250 kilometres.

The last two frigate for the French Navy would incorporate enhanced anti-aircraft capabilities, according to the shipbuilder.

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