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French Navy

From Academic Kids

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Navy officers on the bridges of the frigate La Motte-Picquet
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French Navy summer uniforms
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Frigate division of the French Navy in Toulon harbour

The French Navy (Marine Nationale) is the naval arm of the French military and is the second-largest Western European navy (the largest being the United Kingdom's Royal Navy). It operates a full range of vessels, from patrol boats to guided missile frigates, one aircraft carrier (at present) and strategic missile submarines (SSBNs).

Normally a two carrier force, the current Navy aircraft carrier is named Charles de Gaulle.

The Navy also comprises Naval fusiliers (ground forces, used to secure naval installations) and Naval commandos (amphibious assault and other special operations), collectively known as FUSCO.

Contents

History

[Yet to be written]

The French navy is affectionously known as La Royale (the "Royal"), for its supposed attachement to the monarchy; it is to be noted that some of the greatest heroes of the First Republic were in the French Navy (Casabianca, the Redoutable).

The motto of the French navy is "Honneur, Patrie, Valeur, Discipline" ("Honour, Country, Valour, Discipline").

Present developments

The French Navy is undertaking a significant reinforcement, both in modernising and in number, under the Projet de loi de programmation militaire 2003-2008 ("Military programme law project 2003-2008")[1] (http://www.defense.gouv.fr/sites/defense/enjeux_defense/politique_de_defense/programmation_2003-2008/projet_de_loi_de_programmation_militaire_2003-2008/) , which notably calls for

  • A second aircraft carrier - probably conventionally propelled (the current Charles De Gaulle is nuclear), and built to a similar design as the British CVF ships.
  • 4 Horizon units; two are now under construction, the third one should be ordered in 2007
  • 17 FREMM multipurpose frigates - 8 should be ordered between 2003 and 2008, the first commissioning being expected for 2008
  • 6 nuclear attack submarines of the Barracuda class - 2 should be ordered between 2003 and 2008, the first commissioning being expected for 2012

The equipment will also be modernised, notably

  • New models of the successful Exocet missile
  • Aster and Sylver systems for anti-missile/anti-air defence
  • Cruise missiles (the naval or submarine SCALP EG)

Current ships of the French Navy

Aircraft carriers

Projection and Command vessels

Helicopter Carriers

(Note that most amphibious ships are capable of operating a wing of a dozen a heavy helicopters)


Submarines

SNLE (SSBN)

SNA (Nuclear attack submarines)


First rank Frigates (destroyers)

The French Navy does not use the term "destroyer"; thus, some large ships of the first rank (like Horizon) are designated "frigates", though they are registered as destroyers (with hull numbers "Dxxx").

Second rank frigates

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Stealth frigate Surcouf and Courbet

Avisos

  • D'Estienne d'Orves A69 class - 9 ship (plus 8 decommissioned ships)
    • F781 D'Estienne d'Orves (decomissioned in 1999)
    • F782 Amyot d'Inville(decomissioned in 1999)
    • F783 Drogou(decomissioned in 2000)
    • F784 Détroyat(decomissioned in 1997)
    • F785 Jean Moulin(decomissioned in 1999)
    • F786 Quartier-Maître Anquetil(decomissioned in 2000)
    • F787 Commandant de Pimodan(decomissioned in 2000)
    • F788 Second-Maître Le Bihan
    • F789 Lieutenant de vaisseau Le Hénaff
    • F790 Lieutenant de vaisseau Lavallée
    • F791 Commandant L'Herminier
    • F792 Premier-Maître L'Her
    • F793 Commandant Blaison
    • F794 Enseigne de vaisseau Jacoubet
    • F795 Commandant Ducuing
    • F796 Commandant Birot
    • F797 Commandant Bouan

Patrol ships

  • Albatros (only ship of her class)
  • L'Audacieuse class - 10 ships
    • P682 L'Audacieuse
    • P683 La Boudeuse
    • P684 La Capricieuse
    • P685 La Fougueuse
    • P686 La Glorieuse
    • P687 La Gracieuse
    • P688 La Moqueuse
    • P689 La Railleuse
    • P690 La Rieuse
    • P691 La Tapageuse
  • Sterne (only ship of her class)
  • Grebe (Espadon 50 type; only ship of her class)
  • Flamant class - 3 ships
    • P676 Flamant
    • P677 Cormoran
    • P678 Pluvier
  • Aramis class - 2 ships
    • A712 Athos
    • A713 Aramis

Mine Sweepers

  • Eridan class - 13 ships
    • M641 Eridan
    • M642 Cassiopée
    • M643 Andromède
    • M644 Pégase
    • M645 Orion
    • M646 Croix du sud
    • M647 L'Aigle
    • M648 Lyre
    • M649 Persée
    • M650 Sagittaire
    • M651 Verseau (ex M920 Iris)
    • M652 Céphée (ex M919 Fushia)
    • M653 Capricorne (ex M918 Dianthus)

Landing Platform Dock (LPD)

Light transport ships

Landing crafts

High Sea Tugs

Trial and experimentation ships

Hydrography and Oceanography

Support ships

  • Jules Verne - mobile mechanics
  • Loire
  • Durance class command and support - 4 ships
    • A629 Durance (sold to Argentina in 1999)
    • A607 Meuse
    • A608 Var
    • A630 Marne
    • A631 Somme

School ships

See also

External links

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