The French Weaponry Procurement Agency, DGA, awarded a
€659 million ($827 million) contract to
Dassault, MBDA, Thales and SAGEM for the development of the F3
standard/configuration of the Rafale multi-role fighter.
This contract covers all the activities, services and modifications needed to
put into operational status the first nuclear-capable squadron of Rafale
multi-role fighter in 2008. The F3 standard will bring full functionality to the
Rafale multi-role aircraft.
F3 configured Rafales owned by the French Air Force and French Navy will be able
to fire improved ASMP-A medium range air-to-surface missiles equipped with a
single nuclear warhead, as well as AM39 Exocet anti-ship missiles. In addition,
the F3 standard will integrate next generation reconnaissance systems into
Rafale's weapon system.
The F1 standard was introduced in 2002 by the Rafale M fighters operated by the
French Navy aboard its Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier. The F1 standard
enables the Rafale M aircraft to perform air defense missions.
The F2 standard was developed for both the French Air Force and the Navy. It
supports multi-role capabilities such as air-to-surface modes and penetration at
low altitudes. The F2 also supports Forward Section Optronic Systems (FSOS),
MIDS tactical data link, and the new EMTI computer. Its is scheduled to achieve
operational capability this year.
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