French aerospace and defence company Thales has secured a contract to deliver its new NS50 radar from the Belgium Navy and the Royal Netherlands Navy’s next generation mine counter measures vessels (MCMVs).

Thales is under contract with Kership, which is a joint venture (JV) between Naval Group and Piriou.

Under the latest contract, Thales NS50 radars will be equipped on 12 MCMVs.

The MCMV programme is being led by Belgium Naval & Robotics, a Naval Group and ECA Group consortium. It will lead the production phase and Kership will execute it.

The Belgian Navy and the Royal Dutch Navy will receive six ships each. The first delivery is scheduled to take place in September 2024.

The NS50 radar is designed to provide self-protection capability to the vessels against airborne and surface threats.

It is a fully software-defined sensor that is capable of offering dual functions between ‘air and surface surveillance and fire control’.

Thales Surface Radar activities senior vice-president Serge Adrian said: “Navies are facing more complex, smaller, agile and faster moving simultaneous threats. The compact NS50 is a game changer, it brings the benefit of multi-mission air and surface surveillance, as well as fire control to combat boats, MCM vessels, OPA’s and various other platforms.

“We are proud to work with Naval Group and Kership and supply an innovative radar to the Belgium and Netherland Navies for operational advantage.”

NS50 features a modular and scalable hardware architecture and can be easily fitted onto combat boats, offshore patrol vessels, and other platforms.

In October last year, Thales launched a new friend-foe identification system for the French Navy’s future FDI-class frigates.