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US approves sale of Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System for future French aircraft carrier.

| 2021

According to information released by the U.S. Department of Defense on December 21, 2021, The U.S. State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of France of Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS), Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG), and related equipment for an estimated cost of $1.321 billion.
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The Government of France has requested to buy one (1) Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS), 2 launcher configurations; and one (1) Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG), 3 engine configurations. Also included are land-based testing and test spares; shipboard install; testing and certification support; shipboard spares; peculiar support equipment; government-furnished equipment; multi-purpose reconfigurable training system; operator and maintainer training; integrated electronic technical manuals; drawings and interface control documents; technical assistance; contractor engineering technical services; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The estimated total cost is $1.321 billion.

The proposed sale will result in a continuation of interoperability between the United States and France. EMALS and AAG will be incorporated in France’s next-generation aircraft carrier program. France will have no difficulty absorbing this equipment into its armed forces.

The prime contractors will be General Atomics-Electromagnetic Systems Group, San Diego, CA; and Huntington Ingalls Industries, Newport News, VA. There are no known offset agreements proposed in conjunction with this potential sale.

Implementation of this proposed sale will require the assignment of approximately (40) U.S. Government and contractor representatives to France for 10 weeks per year in calendar years 2033-2038, to support shipboard system installation, commissioning, certification, aircraft compatibility testing, flight deck certification, and sea trials.

The French Navy has launched a program to build an aircraft carrier. It is known in French as Porte-avions de nouvelle génération (PA-NG) for 'new generation aircraft carrier'. Construction of the PANG is expected to begin around 2025 and it will enter service in 2038.

In October 2018, French Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly announced the start of a second carrier program, this time as a replacement for Charles de Gaulle. The military planning legislation for 2019-2025 (Loi de Programmation Militaire 2019-2025) defined an 18-month, €40M study phase, to allow the President to decide on the main characteristics of the program by 2020. In May 2020, during a visit to Chantiers de l'Atlantique, Parly stated that the new carrier would be built in Saint-Nazaire.

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