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DCNS has successfully completed a qualification firing of the F21 torpedo, which is being developed to equip all nuclear submarines of the French Navy as part of the Artémis programme.

The qualification firing was conducted in a secured maritime area off the Var coast, and was preceded by approximately 20 industrial sea trials on prototypes from DCNS’s test vessel Pégase and COMEX’s Janus, as well as from submarines.

The French Government defence procurement and technology agency Direction Générale de l’Armement’s (DGA) Artémis programme has now entered its final development phase, following the completion of the qualification testing.

Artémis Programme DCNS director Franck Dostal explains: “The firing was performed in accordance with the test procedure and communications with the torpedo were operational throughout the exercise.

“The data recorded in real time could retrace the entire mission, thus validating the achievement of all the goals.”

The 1.3t F21 torpedo has a range in excess of 50km and a speed greater than 50k, and has been developed to neutralise enemy vessels and submarines.

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"The 1.3t F21 torpedo has a range in excess of 50km and a speed greater than 50k, and has been developed to neutralise enemy vessels and submarines."

It can be deployed for operations both in deep waters and coastal areas with high levels of noise and dense shipping.

The equipment has real-time processing capacities and can operate at depths from less than 10m to more than 500m.

The Artémis programme is set to commence next year and will gradually equip all French submarines, with the development and supply of approximately 100 F21 torpedoes and their incorporation into the vessels.

F21 torpedo systems have also been selected for use on the submarines of the Brazilian Navy.

Image: F21 torpedo. Photo: courtesy of DCNS.