October 9, 2020 (Google Translation) – On October 5, 2020, the La Fayette (FLF) Courbet- type frigate landed on the tins line of the Castigneau 3 basin, in the Toulon naval base.
This maneuver marks the launch of the renovation-upgrade program which will benefit three of the five French Navy FLFs: Courbet , La Fayette and Aconit .
This will make it possible to modernize the combat system and the optronic capabilities of Courbet , improve its stability, strengthen its structures and renew the propulsion control automaton. Two SADRAL anti-aircraft defense systems, armed with very short range Mistral surface-to-air missiles (M3 version) will replace the existing CROTALE. Finally, the Courbet will be endowed with a capacity to fight under the sea since it will now have KingKlip Mk2 active / passive hull sonar.
Thanks to this modernization work and the addition of capabilities, the renovated FLF will be able, in addition to the many missions already entrusted to them today, to fulfill new missions for the benefit of the defense of France and the French. In addition, the withdrawal from active service of renovated FLFs, initially planned gradually from 2026, may be postponed for 5 years.
Under the project management of the General Directorate of Armament (DGA), industrial modernization works are entrusted to Naval Group (prime contractor) while those relating to maintenance in operational condition (MCO) will be carried out by the Atlantic shipyards under the supervision of the Fleet Support Service (SSF).
After a first half of 2020 focused on operations (in the Indian Ocean then in the Mediterranean, in direct support of Operation Sea Gardian), the crew is tackling this particularly dense maintenance period with determination. The objective pursued by each of the players is to allow Courbet, with its new capabilities, to be operational after the summer of 2021.