French Barracuda-class submarine

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For other ships of the same name, see Barracuda class submarine.
Barracuda class
Profile of the Barracuda type, with her pump-jet propeller and X-shaped stern planes.
Class overview
Name: Barracuda
Builders: DCNS
Operators:  French Navy
Preceded by: Rubis-class
Cost: €9.9bn[1](FY2013) for six boats
€1,300m[1](FY2013) per unit
Built: 2007-
In commission: 2017- (planned)
Building: 2
Planned: 6
Completed: 0
General characteristics
Type: Nuclear attack submarine
Displacement: 4,765 t surfaced
5,300 t submerged
Length: 99.4 m (326 ft)
Beam: 8.8 m (29 ft)
Draught: 7.3 m (24 ft)
Decks: 2
Propulsion: 2 turboreductors groups (10 MW propulsion alternator feeding electric engines)

Nuclear reactor K15, 150 MW
2 emergency electric engines

One pump jet
Speed: Over 25 kn (46 km/h; 29 mph)
14 kn (26 km/h; 16 mph), surfaced
Range: unlimited range, 10 years (nuclear)
Endurance: 70 days of food [2]
Complement: 12 officers
48 petty officers
Sensors and
processing systems:
Armament: 4 × 533 mm tubes

including :

12 × MDCN SCALP Naval missiles
Exocet SM39 Block2 and missiles
20 × F21 Artemis heavy torpedoes[3]

The Barracuda-class (or Suffren-class) is a new nuclear attack submarine, designed by the French shipbuilder DCNS for the French Navy, replacing the Rubis-class submarines. Construction began in 2007 and the first unit will be commissioned in 2017.

Barracudas will use technology from the Triomphant-class, including pump jet propulsion. This class reportedly produces approximately 1/1000 of the detectable noise of the Redoutable-class boats (submarines), and they are ten times more sensitive in detecting other submarines.[4] They will be fitted with torpedo-tube-launched cruise missiles MDCN SCALP Naval for long-range (well above 1,000 km (620 mi)) strikes against strategic land targets. Their missions will include anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare, land attack, intelligence gathering, crisis management and special operations. The Barracuda type will use X-shaped stern planes.

The Barracuda-class nuclear reactor incorporates several improvements over that of the preceding Rubis. Notably, it extends the time between refuelling and complex overhauls (RCOHs) from 7 to 10 years, enabling higher at-sea availability.

In support of special operations missions, Barracuda's may also accommodate up to 12 commandos, while carrying their equipment in a mobile pod attached aft of the sail.[2]

On 22 December 2006 the French government placed a €7.9 billion order for six Barracuda submarines with DCNS and their nuclear powerplants with Areva-Technicatome.[5] According to the DGA “Competition at the subcontractor level will be open to foreign companies for the first time.”[6] The first submarine will be delivered in 2016. Alain Aupetit, DCNS's Barracuda programme director, said “The gap between the delivery of boats one and two will be two-and-a-half years.... After that, we will deliver one boat every two years through to the delivery of the last submarine in 2026.”


Pennant no. Name Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
Suffren 19 December 2007 Expected in 2016 Expected in Dec 2017[1] Toulon
Duguay-Trouin 26 June 2009 Expected end 2019[1] Toulon
Tourville 28 June 2011 Expected in 2021[1] Toulon
De Grasse Expected in 2023 Toulon
Duquesne Expected in 2025 Toulon
Dupetit-Thouars Expected in 2027 Toulon

The names have been selected for the Barracuda class. The first submarine will be called Suffren, and will be followed by Duguay-Trouin, Dupetit-Thouars, Duquesne, Tourville and De Grasse, the order of these five following submarines being subject to change.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Projet de loi de finances pour 2014 : Défense : équipement des forces et excellence technologique des industries de défense" (in French). Senate of France. 21 November 2013. Retrieved 2014-07-02. 
  2. ^ a b "France’s Future SSNs: The Barracuda Class". Defense Industry Daily. 28 October 2014. Retrieved 22 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Nouvelle génération de torpille lourde pour la Marine nationale : la F21". DCNS. October 2008. Retrieved 20 May 2010. [dead link][dead link]
  4. ^ "SNLE-NG Le Triomphant". Retrieved 22 November 2014. 
  5. ^ "France orders six 'Barracuda' class nuclear-driven submarines". Agence France Presse. 2006-12-22. 
  6. ^ Navy League of the United States - Citizens in Support of the Sea Services[dead link]
  7. ^ Les noms des futurs sous-marins nucléaires français dévoilés 30/05/2007

External links[edit]