The French defence procurement agency, Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA), has contracted an EADS-led consortium to implement the RIFAN stage 2 communication system and initial support for the French Navy.

Under the €50m contract, the consortium will design, implement and deploy an updated version of the IP communication network for the French Naval aviation force.

The contract includes an initial three-year maintenance agreement with options for five additional years to check the condition of the system in phases.

During the phases, which have already been launched by the DGA, the consortium will design the RIFAN stage 2 system in detail, produce the installation files and validate the system for the provision of initial logistics support.

RIFAN stage 2 will contribute to digitising the operational space of the naval aviation force and implementing network-enhanced operations while minimising the broadband data exchange capabilities.

The system is specifically designed to increase the interoperability of the navy with its allied forces thereby reinforcing the operational efficiency of its communication networks.

In addition, RIFAN stage 2 will also implement a redundant network management capability to manage the network equipment of the French naval aviation force.

The EADS-led consortium also includes two other contractors: DCNS and Rohde & Schwarz.