DCNS Ramps Up FREMM Aquitaine Harbour Acceptance Tests Ahead of its 1st Sea Going

In accordance with the Programme schedule, DCNS is completing equipment integration and harbour acceptance tests on board the first-of-class FREMM multi-mission frigate Aquitaine. All major ship systems must be tested before the major milestone of the first sea going, scheduled next spring. So far 95% of the electrical and hydraulic equipments of the ship have been installed, so teams are ramping up for the harbour acceptance tests of the principal systems: the information and communication system, the navigation systems (navigation radar, early warning radar), the electric power and distribution system (including four diesel generators), the combat system and the propulsion system. The first tests of the electric propulsion motors and of the gas turbine started over the last few days and have been successfully completed. For the first time the entire transmission system of the frigate was running, from the motors to the test propellers. This event is an important step, and moving moment, as it represents the first heartbeat of the frigate. "From now on all our efforts are focused on the preparation of the first sea going scheduled for the spring", points out Vincent Martinot-Lagarde, DCNS FREMM Programme Director. Over one thousand components have already been assembled, integrated and embarked onboard the first FREMM: this underlines the magnitude of the work undertaken by the DCNS personnel. Further components will be installed over the coming weeks, including for example the propellers, the systems related to the ship safety at sea, the helicopter hangar door and the davits for the semi-rigid boats. For the FREMM Aquitaine first sea trials to be both effective and conclusive, sixty men and women from the French Navy already trained for six months. Besides their regular visits onboard the frigate, they prepare themselves running a Ship Management System training platform in DCNS. Their task is to get familiar with a highly-automated ship which will eventually have a crew of only 108 persons (half the number needed for earlier-generation frigates).

Source: DCNS
Date: Mar 4, 2011