France’s first Barracuda-class submarine enters service
The French Navy’s first Barracuda-class submarine, Suffren, was commissioned into service on Friday 3 June. The ceremony was attended by the new Minister of the Armed Forces, Sébastien Lecornu, who had been appointed to the position in May.
Suffren was handed over to the French Navy in November 2020 to begin its final phase of testing. Now, the vessel has entered service following successful testing.
The Barracuda-class submarines will replace the existing Rubis-class and Amethyste-class and provide France with an enhanced sub-surface attack capability.
According to Shephard Defence Insight, the programme experience significant delays relating to the development of a new nuclear reactor.
Work began on the first-of-class in 2007, however, the submarine was delayed and only launched in July 2019.
The first four vessels are now expected to be commissioned by 2025 and all six by 2030. The unit cost is now thought to be in excess of $2 billion each.
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