Thales has begun systems integration activities for the drone-based French/UK Maritime Mine Countermeasures (MMCM) programme ahead of beginning full contractor trials in 2019.
Being jointly funded by the two partner nations, the MMCM programme covers the design, development, integration, and qualification of two offboard minehunting ‘system of systems’ capable of autonomous detection, classification, identification, and neutralisation operations. MMCM provides the basis for France’s next-generation Système de Lutte Anti-Mines - Futur (SLAM-F) programme, and is informing the UK’s future MCM and Hydrographic Capability (MHC) programme.
A Thales-led team was selected to lead the programme in March 2015. Following the completion of Phase 1 definition activities, European defence procurement agency OCCAR (on behalf of France's Direction Générale de l'Armement and the UK's Defence Equipment and Support organisation) in late 2016 awarded Thales a follow-on contact for the build and qualification of two identical systems – a prototype for the French Navy and a demonstrator for the Royal Navy – to be delivered by the end of 2019.
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