Belgian Navy press release (translation by Naval News)
In the midst of the COVID-19 health crisis, the teams of Belgium Naval & Robotics and of the binational defense project have reached a new milestone: “Systems Functional Review”. This evaluation makes it possible to validate the functional and architectural studies of all the systems of MCM vessels developed by Naval Group such as computer networks, electrical installations, propulsion systems or combat systems, as well as those of all unmanned systems developed by ECA Group. This review also focused on the system of systems that provides mission management, communications and cybersecurity, as well as on the integration of the unmanned systems aboard the ship.
“This milestone represents an important step because it demonstrates that the systems architecture of the armed ship meets the functional requirements of our Belgian and Dutch customers,”
Eric Perrot, MCM program director at Naval Group.
“The requirement and the rigor of the client when passing these milestones are essential; we can thus approach the next phases of the program in good conditions”
Jean-Louis Sambarino, MCM program director at ECA Group.
“The COVID-19 challenge was resolutely taken up and mastered by Belgium Naval & Robotics and our binational project team. The flexibility, diligence and professionalism of both parties were the ingredients necessary for the success of this important step in the contractual deadlines. The constructive atmosphere and expertise of Belgium Naval & Robotics inspires confidence in the prospect of the next milestone this fall. “
Commander Claude Bultot, program director for the Belgian and Dutch navies
Next phase: Preliminary Design Review
In charge of the preliminary design of the ships, Naval Group works in close collaboration with Kership who will carry out the detailed design of the ships and their construction. Kership’s activities will start after passing the Preliminary Design Review milestone, which is scheduled for December 2020.
The contract for twelve MCM vessels for the Belgian and Dutch navies will span over ten years. After a design period of three years, Belgium Naval & Robotics will move on to the production phase of these ships and unmanned systems, with an initial delivery scheduled for 2024. Six ships will be delivered to the Belgian navy and six to the Dutch navy ; They will be equipped with complete drone systems (Toolbox) containing a total of more than a hundred underwater, surface and aerial drones entirely dedicated to mine hunting.