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Displaying items by tag: Bételgeuse

Two vessels from the French Navy based in the Breton naval port of Brest, are to make a four-day visit to Dublin Port during the course of St. Patrick's Day festivities. The minehunter CMT Cassiopée (M642) and mine-route survey craft Altaïr (M771) are to arrive tomorrow morning, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The French vessels are to moor alongside Sir John Rogersons Quay, noting they will not be open to the public. Despite that, the naval ships will be accessible to view at close quarters along the city-centre quayside and the addition of easy road access from the north quays using the nearby Samuel Beckett swing-bridge.

CMT Cassiopée is a 'Tripartite' class minehunter built for the navies of France, Belgium and The Netherlands. The class were conceived in the 1970's and built during the following decade. The French built the mine-hunting equipment, the Belgians provided the electronics and the Dutch constructed the propulsion unit.

Displacing 615 tonnes, Cassiopée (see photo) was built by the Direction des Constructions Navales (DCN) shipyard in Lorient and entered service in 1984. The 51.5m minehunter has a crew of 49. Over the years several of the Tripartite class were sold to the navies of Bulgaria, Indonesia, Latvia and Pakistan.

In January 2009 the Cassiopée was joined by the L.E. Emer (P21) in Bantry Bay to commemmorate the 30th anniversary of the Whiddy Island Oil Refinery disaster and the sinking of the French supertanker the Bételgeuse.

Like the Cassiopée the minehunter BRS Altaïr (M771) was also built in 1984 but at the Chantier (Socarenam) shipyard at Boulogne-sur-Mer. At 28m long the craft (photo) is one of the three Antar class which has a 250 tonnes displacement and a crew of 23.

The French Naval call to the capital was to coincide with a visiting task force group from the German Navy. The task force of two frigates and a support ship were due to visit at the weekend but this was cancelled due to humanitarian relief operations off Libya. To read more about this and the task force vessels click here.

Published in Ports & Shipping
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