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French Navy orders SonoFlash

19th March 2021 - 14:51 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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New sonobuoy leverages French sovereign capabilities in acoustic sensing technology.

French defence procurement agency DGA has ordered the  SonoFlash ASW sonobuoy from Thales.

From 2025 the French Navy will be the first operational user of SonoFlash for deployment by modernised Atlantique 2 maritime patrol aircraft and NH90 Caiman tactical transport helicopters.

Thales noted in a 19 March statement that the sonobuoy could also be exported ‘to equip all modern maritime patrol aircraft and helicopters as well as all types of unmanned platforms, including autonomous surface vehicles and rotary-wing (VTOL) and fixed-wing UAVs equipped with a suitable multi-sonobuoy dispenser’.

SonoFlash was unveiled at the Euronaval trade show in October 2018. It is manufactured in France with support from SMEs such as Telerad, SelhaGroup and Realmeca.

‘SonoFlash extends the range of a naval force's anti-submarine warfare operations, [by] offering a versatile and easy-to-deploy solution for tracking submarines from any piloted or remotely piloted aircraft, frigate or unmanned surface vehicle,’ said Alexis Morel, VP of Thales Underwater Systems.

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