Thales has won a contract from DCNS to supply its latest-generation IFF identification systems for the French Navy's Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier and the two French Horizon-class frigates.
The installation of these new systems, part of Thales's BlueGate product family, will overcome the limitations of the systems currently in service and provide the vessels with an effective Mode 5 / Mode S capability. The upgrade to the latest NATO IFF standard will enable the warships to perform military missions with the highest levels of security, dependability and integrity (Mode 5), and better identify civil aircraft (Mode S).
The BlueGate IFF system was tested and validated during the international Bold Quest exercise in June 2013 in the United States. The exercise was a key milestone for Thales, providing an opportunity to demonstrate BlueGate's interoperability with allied systems, the guaranteed levels of IFF security it offers, and the fully certifiable compliance of the BlueGate family of IFF products.
BlueGate IFF systems from Thales are already installed on the French Navy's Jean-Bart anti-aircraft frigate and successfully passed Sea Acceptance Tests (SATs) in October 2013. The Jean-Bart was the first French Navy vessel with an operational Mode 5 capability, soon to be followed by the Cassard anti-aircraft frigate.