France exhibits military muscle with its new generation nuclear aircraft carrier: this will be the PA-Ng

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France, with the Charles de Gaulle (R91), is part of the select group of countries that have aircraft carriers. The European country, however, is working to add a second ship with these characteristics to its Armed Forces. This is PA-Ng, a new generation nuclear aircraft carrier which should enter service in 2037 or 2038.

The development program for the new aircraft carrier was announced in December 2020 by the government of President Emmanuel Macron, but details about it have been emerging little by little over the months. Now during the exhibition Euro Naval 2022one of the contractors behind the project, Navy Grouphas revealed some details.

A look at France’s next nuclear-powered aircraft carrier

The French industrial group specialized in the design, development and construction of ships posted this week on Twitter a series of PA-Ng renders that allow us to get a clearer idea about the chosen design lines, the position of the bridge and the flight deck, and the number and position of the planes that it will be able to transport.

According to the images, the aircraft carrier could accommodate almost 30 aircraft on deck. Likewise, the command bridge would be located on the left side of the ship (if we look at it from the front) to accommodate a new electromagnetic catapult system called EMALS, similar to the one on the USS Gerald R. Ford, which entered service this year.

But not only planes will operate this ship. She will also have areas for the takeoff and landing of drones and helicopters. It’s not exactly going to be small. The specs shared by the Direction générale de l’armement (DGA) indicate that the aircraft carrier will have a total length of 310 meters, that is, it will be larger than the Charles de Gaulle whose total length is 262 meters.

French Nuclear Aircraft Carrier 1

As for the aircraft, sixth-generation fighters would operate in the PA-Ng New Generation Fighters (NGF) and 4.5 generation Dassault Rafale M fighters. It would also be home to an E-2D Advanced Hawkeyes airborne early warning aircraft and several other drones.

The propulsion will be in charge of two K22 nuclear reactors, designed by TechnicAtome, which will offer speeds of up to 30 knots. In addition, they will have the mission of supplying the electrical energy necessary for the operation of all the ship’s systems, which, in addition to all the aircraft, is expected to have a crew of 2,000 people.

French Nuclear Aircraft Carrier 4

At the level of weapons and defense systems, the characteristics that it will have are still not clear. And, it should be noted, that since it is a defense project, some details may stay classified even after the carrier enters service. As for the latter, we will still have to wait a good amount of time.

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If all goes according to plan, the project should be carried out in the Chantiers de l’Atlantique dry dock in Saint Nazaire, on the west coast of France. Sea trials would begin in 2035 or 2035. Thus, the Marine nationale would receive his new acquisition between 2037 and 2038just in time for Charles De Gaulle’s retirement.

Images: Navy Group

In Xataka: This aircraft carrier already uses electromagnetic catapults to launch and recover its planes

France, with the Charles de Gaulle (R91), is part of the select group of countries that have aircraft carriers. The…

France, with the Charles de Gaulle (R91), is part of the select group of countries that have aircraft carriers. The…

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