The first French Gowind Class offshore patrol boat, L’Adroit, has begun first sea trials to validate sea keeping and other nautical qualities of the vessel.

During the sea trials, the ship’s firefighting, flood control and other safety systems will be tested while checks on the propulsion system and vessel manoeuvrability will also be checked.

The trials will also include testing of the ship’s navigation systems, inertial positioning platforms and other systems.

The new OPV has been designed to carry out maritime surveillance and a wide range of coastguard and naval missions.

The 87m-long OPV offers three weeks’ blue-water endurance, a range of 8,000nm and can cruise at speeds of 21kt.

The OPV can accommodate an organic helicopter and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as well as 30 passengers.

Construction of the vessel is scheduled for completion by DCNS at the end of 2011.