Monday, July 12, 2010
M51 SLBM test fired successfully
French Defence Minister Hervé Morin expressed his satisfaction after today’s successful launch of an M51 strategic missile by the nuclear-powered missile submarine Le Terrible. As is always the case for such trials, the missile was not fitted with a nuclear warhead.
This test validates the submarine’s capacity to launch a nuclear strategic missile in operational conditions. It was carried out strictly respecting France’s international commitments.
Carried out by the Delegation Generale de l’Armement and the French navy, the July 10 test launch took place at 09:32 CET in the Bay of Audierne, in France’s western-most Finisterre district. The M51 missile was tracked throughout its flight by DGA’s missile launch centers at Biscarosse and Quimper, and by the trials ship “Monge”. The missile’s impact area was in the middle of the North Atlantic, at a distance of several hundred kilometers from the nearest coast.
This successful trial once again demonstrates the high-technology excellence that DGA, the French navy and French industry have deployed in this field.