Preparing for the Future: Naval Group Presented its Latest Innovations

Naval Group gathered last week, for the third consecutive year, its governmental, industrial and academic partners. Over the course of these two days, Naval Group presented its innovations dedicated to naval-force combat superiority. The exchanges addressed the projects that need to be accelerated to allow Naval Group’s client navies, the first of which being the French Navy, to fulfil their current and future missions.

3DExperience: A new conception tool for the Belharra/FTI frigate. 
This conception solution developed with Dassault Systemes is used for the conception of the FTI. It relies on newly developped functionalities: 1- CAD (computer-aided design) facilitating the simultaneous engineering of the hull and compartments. 2- An integrated schematic tool that facilitates tiling. 3- An optimized catalog allowing the rationalization of articles. 4- Unique electronic management for all product documentation.

“The last few years have seen a rapid ramping up on the international stage of the competencies of not only the armed forces, but also industry, from emerging economies. If we want to ensure that the French Navy maintains its technological combat superiority and maintain our attractiveness for the export market, we must place innovation at the heart of our strategy and accelerate our initiatives”, explains Éric Papin, Director of Innovation and Technological Expertise.
A live demonstration showed a maintenance operation on a vessel at sea performed collaboratively, thanks to virtual reality and augmented reality, between the crew and a Naval Group technician located in the Operational Digitally Integrated Support Center at the Toulon Naval Base.
Naval Group is a prime contractor for the French naval defense industry and capitalizes daily on an innovation ecosystem, which it wished to associate with the Naval Innovation Days. These industrial (Dassault Systèmes, Cobham) and academic (ENSTA Paris Tech, École centrale de Nantes, Université d’Aix-Marseille) partners or innovative start-up SMEs (ALSEAMAR, SNIPS, Studio NYX, EGERIE) were present for a wide variety of subjects such as artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing or cyberdefence.

Decision support tool for asymmetric warfare: 
A tool to assist crews with the increasing traffic in littoral areas and multiform threat. This Naval Group solution offers a day / night panoramic surveillance system, identification sensors, lethal and non lethal effectors, augmented reality and decision making system. This tool is being offered for the French Navy FTI (but has not been selected yet). 

Innovative propellers in additive manufacturing: The JLMT (Joint Laboratory of Marine Technology, a laboratory jointly created by Naval Group, Centrale Nantes and the University of Nantes) innovates on the additive manufacturing of large metallic parts. By removing the limits imposed by traditional processes, these technologies open the way to concepts of innovative parts and assemblies.

Additive manufacturing of propellers allows for superior performances in terms of weight (up to 40% reduction in weight), fuel economy, power output and acoustic levels. For examples hollow propellers can be filled with absorbent or noies reducing materials. This solution is being considered for the SNLE3G, the next generation of French Navy SSBN.

Additive manufacturing / 3D printing of propellers

"Ship inside" 3D/VR training solution: Naval Group partnered with French video game sutdio NYX to create this new training solution based on virtual reality. The tool accurately creates the 3D layout of submarines and surface vessels and offers an immersive training solution for crews and engineers alike. It will be deployed for the Barracuda SSN this year and for FTI and FREMM frigates in the near future.

Configurable submarine sail: Constantly evolving around the operational need to meet the requirements of masts, weapons, surveillance, hydrodynamics, stealth...