Thales ramps up ammunition production and launches OpenDRobotics

Thales expands ammo production and launches new integrated drone and robotics system

17 June 2024

Thales has launched a new solution, OpenDRobotics which combines robotics technologies with unmanned  air and ground systems to provide an integrated, “human-in-the-loop” mission system capability.

OpenDRobotics coordinates the capabilities of a wide range of drones and robotic systems, providing command-and-control with extended collaborative combat functions.

 he robotics system builds on the open-source ROS (Robot Operating System) and STANAG 4586 standards, widely used by NATO and were developed as collaborative initiatives to promote easier integration of drones and robotic systems developed by partners and third parties.

Thales also announced that it had received a new order for tens of thousands of 120 mm rounds from the French Army and will ramp up production capacity to meet the requirement. The La Ferté Saint Aubin site near Orleans will increase its production rates, from an overall annual output of 20,000 rounds in 2023, to more than 80,000 rounds a year by 2026.

Less than two years after awarding Thales a contract for 120 mm munitions, with a firm order for 3,000 illuminating mortar rounds, France's Joint Munitions Command has signed a new contract with Thales to supply 120 mm rounds, completing the order for 15,000 rounds signed in 2023.

High-explosive (HE) rounds make up two-thirds of the total order, with practice rounds accounting for the remaining third. The ordnance will be used by towed 120 mm rifled towed mortar systems, and in due course by the MEPAC1 variant of the Griffon multi-role armoured vehicle integrated with the ATLAS2 automated artillery fire control system. 

Thales will provide the armed forces with technical assistance, support for integration of the mortar systems on board the vehicles, and maintenance services for the mortar systems and munitions. The munitions will be delivered between 2024 and 2029, with a first shipment scheduled for the last quarter of 2024.

In addition to the La Ferté Saint Aubin site, a number of Thales partner SMEs, including companies manufacturing machined projectile bodies and mechanical components, will be involved in fulfilling the new order.