The French armament procurement agency (DGA) on Friday took delivery of first two new generation landing craft known as EDA-S.
The craft, Arbalette and Arquebuse, were ordered in 2019 from the company CNIM for the benefit of the French Navy and the Army. Deliveries of the next twelve EDA-S will run until 2025, the French defense ministry announced.
The EDA-S program is part of the renewal of the military’s capabilities included in the 2019-2025 Military Programming Law (LPM) carried by the Ministry of the Armed Forces. The EDA-S replace the current landing crafts (also known as CTM) built in the 1980s. The EDA-S will be deployed from the three Mistral class amphibious helicopter carriers (PHA), as well as overseas.
Serial production is being carried out in Saint-Malo (Brittany – West of France) by the French firm SOCARENAM, CNIM’s subcontractor for this project.
The first two EDA-S will be delivered following land and sea trials, which began in the summer of 2021. These tests have validated the ability of the EDA-S to embark and disembark all types of transport vehicles and armored vehicles, including the heaviest of them (the Leclerc tank), whether on a beach, from a LHD or from a pier or an inclined ramp, day or night.
Eight EDA-S are intended for the Toulon amphibious squadron to replace the existing CTMs. The other six will be deployed overseas to replace various logistics barges: two in Djibouti, one in Mayotte Mayotte, one in New Caledonia, one in Martinique and one in French Guiana.
The EDA-S are compact vessels (length 28.8 meters / width 6.7 meters) allowing the LHDs to embark up to four.