French government approves Rafale F4 upgrades
March 23 (UPI) — The French Ministry of Defense has given the green light for Dassault Aviation to begin developing the Rafale jet’s F4 standard.
The upgrade aims to provide the legacy F3-R standard jets with updated technological capabilities. Dassault representatives say the plan will make the fighters more effective during combat missions.
“I am delighted by the Minister for Defense’s decision,” Dassault CEO Eric Trappier said in a press release. “The F4 standard will incorporate operational experience feedback and enable continuous improvement of the Rafale to be maintained. It will reinforce the national skills and technological capabilities essential for preparing the development of the next generation of combat aircraft.”
French defense leaders expect to begin qualification for the F4 standard in 2018.
The Rafale is a twin-jet, multirole fighter primarily operated by the French armed forces. The plane is fitted to perform a balanced set of missions, including air defense, power projection, deep strike, air support and reconnaissance operations.
The governments of India, Egypt and Qatar have all placed orders for Rafale aircraft.
Original post upi.com
Rafale: towards standard F4
Saint-Cloud, 22 March 2017 – On 20 March 2017, the French Minister for Defense, Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian, authorized the start of development of the new RAFALE F4 standard.
Dassault Aviation and the 500 French companies associated with the RAFALE program wish to thank the French Ministry of Defense, the Defense procurement agency (DGA), the French Air Force and the Navy for their confidence.
The policy underpinning the RAFALE program is continuous development to adapt the aircraft to changing needs, through a succession of standards. As early as 2023, a first version of the F4 standard will follow the F3-R standard, scheduled for qualification in 2018.
“I am delighted by the Minister for Defense’s decision. The F4 standard will incorporate operational experience feedback and enable continuous improvement of the RAFALE to be maintained. It will reinforce the national skills and technological capabilities essential for preparing the development of the next generation of combat aircraft”, stated Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation. “I am also delighted that the Defense Ministry underlines the need to continue with acquisition of the RAFALE, beyond the 4th tranche currently in production, in order primarily to meet the needs of the French Air Force. Finally, this robust national foundation will constitute a launch pad for our aircraft in future export markets.”
Dassault Rafale: Details