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French Navy receives Luciole last of 8 multi-mission hybrid diesel-electric propulsion barges


The French Navy has received "Luciole", the last of 8 multi-mission hybrid diesel-electric propulsion barges ordered in December 2015.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 The French Cigale-class of « Chalands Multi-Missions » (CMM) consists of self-propelled barges assigned to port service and is used for underwater work, the training of divers, the transport of equipment or pollution control (Picture source: French Navy)


The French Cigale-class of « Chalands Multi-Missions » (CMM) consists of self-propelled barges assigned to port service and is used for underwater work, the training of divers, the transport of equipment or pollution control. They are the first surface boats of the French Navy to have hybrid diesel-electric propulsion. The reception of the first unit took place in November 2017. The order for the complete series took place on March 6, 2018. Two optional units were also ordered by the French Navy, bringing the total series to 8 units.

The CMM's hull is 24 m long, 7 m wide and made of aluminum. It supports a composite superstructure placed at the front, topped with a navigation gangway. The rear is flat and uncluttered, constituting a workspace or storage.

The hybrid propulsion system with batteries is a novelty in the French Navy. This engine combines diesel-powered generators and electric batteries. The former operate at maximum speed and the latter at low speed, where diesel engines are less efficient. This installation reduces fuel consumption, polluting and noise emissions, promoting the well-being of sailors during periods of low-speed work.

The CMMs have been built by the H2X shipyard in La Ciotat and maintained in operational condition by Cegelec Défense and Naval Sud-Est. The ports of Toulon and Brest received two units, that of Cherbourg and the Mediterranean school of Saint-Mandrier a single unit. A bargewas planned for the Antilles and a last one for the Human Diving and Under-Sea Intervention Unit (CEPHISMER).