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Ballistic Missile Submarine Téméraire Adopts M51 Missile

France carries out a flight test of the M51 ballistic missile.

The ballistic missile submarine Téméraire continues to be delivered to Ile Longue, the French naval base for nuclear boats, marking a key step in a significant refit with the sub, shipbuilder Naval Group said in the July 23 statement.

That move, which comes “after 20 months at work,” marked “a significant help the the past modernization and adaptation of nuclear ballistic submarines for that M51 missile,” the company said.

The submarine was towed Friday from dock 8 at Brest for the highly secure base on Ile Longue, a little peninsula in Brittany, northern France, in which the French Navy maintains its fleet of four ballistic missile boats.

The overhaul and refit required the hull being split open and new silos installed for that M51 missile, that’s longer and wider than the outgoing M45 weapon. Work continues some 3 or 4 months for the Téméraire on Ile Longue, with the boat anticipated to sail for the further nine years after here we are at service.

“The adaptation to the new missiles is of primary importance,” said Maximilian Porter, program director at the Direction Générale de l’Armement procurement office, regional paper France Ouest Entreprise reported. Combat and navigation systems were also updated.

Téméraire may be the third ballistic missile submarine to get refitted for your M51 weapon, pursuing the Vigilant and Triomphant. That program of refits has brought some a decade. The fourth ballistic missile boat, Terrible, was delivered equipped to the M51.

Naval Group was prime contractor for the major overhaul and refit, which takes some a couple of years and four million hours at work on each boat.

Airbus Defense & Space is contractor to the M51 missile, which is assembled at its nearby Guenvénez plant and delivered on the Ile Longue base, the place that the atomic warheads are fitted.

The government’s Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission is assembling and fitting the nuclear warhead on the missile on Ile Longue. Each of the Triomphant-class submarines carry 16 M51 missiles, which can carry approximately six independent warheads.

Studies are being conducted for any third-generation nuclear ballistic missile submarine and future versions in the M51. The M51.3 version is caused by enter service around 2025. Under the newly adopted 2019-2025 defense budget law, the government has earmarked €25 billion (U.S. $29 billion) for work for the nuclear deterrent, including seaborne and airborne weapons.

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