France launches nuclear-powered submarine

French naval defense company Naval Group (formerly known as DCNS) launched on July 12 Suffren, the first of six Barracuda-class nuclear submarines for the French Navy.


President of the French Republic Emmanuel Macron, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Naval Group Hervé Guillou, and Director of the Barracuda program at Naval Group Vincent Martinot-Lagarde were present during the ceremonial launching.

“We are proud to have presented to the President of the French Republic the first submarine of the Barracuda-class, a symbol of our exceptional know-how and our ability to master the most advanced technologies and the most complex products. The construction of the Suffren is a collective success, the result of a strong cooperation with our long-standing partners: the French Navy and the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA), but also the Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies Commission (CEA), TechnicAtome and all the manufacturers of the sector,” Guillou said during the ceremony.

“Now, we are all focused on finalising the Suffren tests at the shipyard, with the start-up of the nuclear boiler room in the coming weeks, but also on producing the complete series. Maintaining our knowledge and adapting to new technologies are among our main priorities,” he added.

According to Naval Group, “the Suffren is one of the stealthiest submarines over the world. This discretion, combined with its advanced detection capabilities, guarantees its acoustic superiority.”

“For the first time thanks to the Suffren-class submarines, the French Navy will have a deep strike capability with MBDA’s naval cruise missiles (MdCN). The latest generation of SSN also allows the discreet deployment of special forces underwater, in particular thanks to its “divers hatch” and the optional carrying of a dry deck shelter allowing for the deployment of underwater vehicles,” it added.