The launching of the Suffren marks a new stage for a Barracuda program which also targets the export market

The day before yesterday, the Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly declared on Twitter that the nuclear attack submarine Suffren, the first Barracuda-type vessel, made its first dive on February 4. In reality, as confirmed to us by a representative of Naval Group, which builds the new submarines in its Cherbourg shipyard, it was not the first dive but indeed "the first update complete water in the Cherbourg launching basin ”. A significant difference, but which should not hide the fact that the Barracuda program is advancing today on time, with all the precautions required for a building carrying a nuclear reactor.

It is indeed this type of propulsion which explains that more than six months separated the official "launch" of Suffren, July 12, and this first complete launch, prelude to a first dive expected now shortly. As a reminder, the basin in which the Suffren is located was put in water at the beginning of August, but the submarine has so far been supported by a line of tins placed at the bottom of the basin. While "launch" and "launch" are generally perfectly synonymous for conventional submarines, the top seed of the Barracuda program required much longer preparations in order to safely activate its propulsion system nuclear. This first start-up of the nuclear reactor, called " divergence", Asked a preparation of several months by the teams of the Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) and TechnicAtome, assisted by the manufacturer Naval Group and the French Navy.

The launch of the Riachuelo, the first Scorpene built under license in Brazil, effectively corresponded to its first launch. The complexity of nuclear powered buildings, especially the first class, requires a launch in two stages.

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