The French Defence Innovation Agency’s (AID) “LARINAE” call for projects aims to provide the French army with a drone equipped with an anti-tank warhead. On 16 June 2023, Nexter Arrowtech, EOS Technologie and TRAAK signed a contract with the AID to develop, in France, a new type of medium-range remotely operated munition, previously absent from the French military arsenal. The first demonstrator will be presented at the end of 2024. Nexter, a company of KNDS, and its partners are proposing a solution comprising a UAV system manufactured by EOS Technologie, a core-generating charge (CGN) produced by Nexter, and a GPS denied navigation system from TRAAK that makes it immune to jamming. Nexter and its partners are offering a product that is currently absent from the French military arsenal. This remotely-operated ammunition will have a range of at least 80km and an autonomy of 3 hours.
Innovative in its core-generating charge technology, the remotely-operated munition will be capable of thwarting the active defences of armoured vehicles before piercing their armour. Its reusability will also enable it to carry out intelligence missions thanks to an optronic ball which is able to detect a vehicle 15 km away by day and 3 km away by night. It will have navigation capabilities in a contested environment (jamming) and can also be reused when it has not attacked a target. Thanks to a vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) system and a high-performance solution for arming and disarming the warhead, the operator will be able to recover it easily and safely. Finally, the human being remains at the heart of the decision-making loop in every scenario, thanks to the ammunition’s advanced telemetry. The optronic ball that equips it enables the operator to observe the terrain to make the decision to strike, which can be interrupted at any time.
Echoing the French President’s address and the speeches by the French Minister for the Armed Forces and the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces, the Defence Innovation Agency (AID) wants France not just to catch up in terms of remotely-delivered munitions, but to be “one war ahead. To this end, the sovereign solution for remotely operated ammunition, entirely manufactured in France by the EOS – Nexter – TRAAK consortium, will take the form of a demonstrator within an unprecedented period of 18 months, in order to test new operating modes. Finally, the third novelty concerned a rule of the consultation imposed in a context of war economy: the ceiling price of the solution is fixed in advance by the client. The aim of the LARINAE project is to test a medium-range remotely operated munition for the French army, capable of dealing with armoured targets.