NEW DELHI: This summer, Lann-Bihoué French naval air station received the first two ATL2 maritime patrol aircraft upgraded by Dassault Aviation.
Last week, Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces, flew on one of these aircraft.
These two events demonstrate the progress made on the upgrade program which is designed to modernize the ATL2 combat system to standard 6.
The contract for the upgraded (standard 6) ATL2 combat system was awarded by the defense procurement agency DGA on October 4, 2013. The program covers a fleet of 18 aircraft. Dassault Aviation will deliver a further five upgraded ATL2s in the period 2020-2023. In parallel, the SIAé aeronautical maintenance center will upgrade 11 aircraft.
Standard 6 includes:
new radar: Thales Search Master with active antenna,
new Thales acoustic subsystem to gather and process signals from the latest-generation air-dropped sonobuoys for submarine detection,
new navigation console designed by Dassault Aviation,
new consoles for the tactical display subsystem, developed by SIAé.
The upgrade work is performed by Dassault Aviation and Thales (co-contractors), in association with Naval Group and in cooperation with SIAé. Architect of the combat system, Dassault Aviation is as well responsible for development of the core system including LOTI software designed by Naval Group. Dassault Aviation is also in charge of overall integration of all subsystems.
All the specifications for this program were established using the PLM Systèmes tool as part of a Dassault Aviation-Thales-Naval Group-SIAé collaborative work platform installed at St-Cloud in the Dassault Aviation design office.
The standard 6 upgrade will improve the ATL2s’ capability to support the Strategic Ocean Force, to deal with modern threats (future nuclear or conventional submarines, naval forces at sea, etc.) and to support air-land missions, until 2030.
France is one of the very few countries producing high-technology maritime patrol aircraft combining detection (optronics, radar, acoustics) with a variety of weapons (anti-ship missiles, torpedoes, laser-guided weapons).
“This expertise as an architect of maritime patrol solutions, both for the platform and for systems integration, is the result of experience dating back to the late 1950s and the launch of the ATL1 program, the predecessor of the ATL2. Dassault Aviation has extended this experience, from the 1970s onwards, with the maritime surveillance Falcons, the latest version of which is the Falcon 2000 MRA-based Albatros program. As we have shown once again with the standard 6, this maritime patrol/maritime surveillance expertise builds largely on the trust and the excellent working relations between our company, the DGA and the French Navy, to which I express my sincere gratitude. We will leverage this know-how to prepare together maritime patrol solutions beyond 2030”, declared Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation.