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Rolls-Royce To Supply Propulsion And Motion Control Systems To The French Navy

Posted on September 8, 2009

Rolls-Royce has won a US$12.4 million order for the supply of podded propulsion equipment and stabilizing fins for the latest French Navy Mistral class amphibious assault ship. This latest order follows earlier contracts to supply podded propulsors and stabilizers on the first two ships in the class - Mistral and Tonnerre - which entered service in 2006 and 2007 respectively. The third vessel, to be built by STX Europe, is expected to enter service in 2012.

Rolls-Royce President – Naval, Andy Marsh said: “The contract recognizes our ability to deliver a wide range of propulsion and motion control equipment and underlines our important relationship with the French Navy. We are proud to play a part in the delivery of the Mistral class.”

The Mermaid Pod propulsor is a highly optimized propulsor and steering device incorporating two electric motors housed in two steel pods, mounted on the hull of the ship. The pod acts as a rudder to steer the ship and the motor drives a propeller. Converteam will supply the electric propulsion motors and power converters. The stabilizing fins are retractable and can be deployed from their housing in the ship’s hull to stabilise the vessel when sailing through rough seas. Once deployed, stabilizers pivot to counteract the roll of the sea to lift the vessel in a similar concept to that of an aircraft’s wing. Stabilizers perform an essential role in steadying a ship during military operations such as the use of weaponry, refuelling or during the take off and landing of aircraft.

The podded propulsors will be manufactured in the Rolls-Royce facility in Kristinehamn, Sweden and the company’s Dunfermline facility in Scotland will produce the stabilizers. Final assembly and tests of the pod propulsors will take place in Converteam’s Rotating Machines factory in Nancy, France.

For more information: www.rolls-royce.com

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