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Subject: France Test Launches Sea-Based Strategic Missile
Softwar    6/22/2007 12:10:24 PM France Test Launches Sea-Based Strategic Missile France has conducted a successful test launch of its new M51 ballistic missile, which will be used on its nuclear submarines, the defense minister said Thursday. The unarmed missile was launched from the Biscarosse site in the Landes region of southwest France and fell into the North Atlantic off the U.S. coast. "We conducted a second test of the M51 missile this morning, which was a complete success," Herve Morin said. The first test of the M51, which is capable of carrying six nuclear warheads and has a range of 8,000 km (5,000 miles), was conducted in November 2006. The missile will replace the M45 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) and will be deployed on new Triomphant-class strategic nuclear submarines starting in 2010. The minister said the missile test conformed to all of France's international commitments and was part of France's missile program developed to safeguard national sovereignty and its independence. Commenting on the French missile launch, Russia's Chief of the General Staff, Yury Baluyevsky, said the test was a step in the development of nuclear weapons delivery vehicles, which France has been pursuing since the 1950s. Baluyevsky said Russia and France planned to discuss in July the test results and the situation around the proposed U.S. missile shield in Europe.
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french stratege       6/24/2007 9:00:44 PM
Second successfull test
Something to be proud of
Rafale, ASMP-A, Aster, Mica, Bonus, Mistral, AASM, Barracuda class, Triomphant class, Grave, Cobra, Rias, Leclerc, Tiger, Caesar ...modernization on the way!
What happens to Bulava?
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00_Chem_AJB       6/24/2007 9:39:10 PM
Bulava isn't a failure just yet, and it seems you are ahead of us when it comes to replacing our current generation of SLBMs and Boomers, by the way, what was the French public's opinion on this?
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Herald1234       6/25/2007 5:48:39 AM

Second successfull test

Something to be proud of

Decent aircraft about as competitive as an Eagle
Decent obsolete air fueled liquid fueled ramjet missile. Similar to SRAM, about as effective.
Bigger joke.
Swedish artillery shell designed to use SFW technology. Very good.
Very effective A2A  missiles.
Rocket propelled bomb with GPS guidance with final infra-red GCU steering correction. A JDAM clone. Range and SMASH said to be similar with improved accuracy.
Barracuda class,
Does not exist  as a sub except as a funded project. It is hoped that the first one will be in the water by 2016
Triomphant class,
A submarine about as technically sophisticated as a Vanguard. Just a standard SLBM SSBN. Effective.
GRAVES radar
Ground based warning radar of no special significance. Recently in the news as the listed French means of tracking US LEO satellites. What is laughable is that the GRAVES used reflected radiation off the  US satellites' SOLAR PANELs to establish orbit tracks. Not too swift there.
 COBRA radar
Lockheed Martin delivered a fine counter battery radar product in conjunction with British portion of  EADS. The French Army will be happy with their system after the UAE gets its order filled.
I don't know enough to comment objectively.
I have to take BWs assessment on this one, that it is a competitive tank. Until I see one eat a KORNET all I have is test data which indicates a decent target and a possible effective AFV.
Mangusta is probably the better bird.
 Caesar ...modernization on the way!
No doubt about it, here, outside of the South Africans, France is a world leader in artillery systems.

What happens to Bulava?
Best information I can find is that the Russians are conducting test firings on land to find out why the guidance control unit shock failed.

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