Australian delegation on the French Landing Helicopter Dock ’DIXMUDE’ [fr]
During the amphibious assault ship “Dixmude” and its accompanying frigate ’Surcouf’’s port stop in Darwin (NT) from the 15 to the 19 of May 2018, an Australian joint military delegation took the opportunity to visit the vessel on the 15th, mostly for its amphibious capabilities.
The amphibious assault ship ’Dixmude’ in Darwin
This delegation, composed of an Australian Army officer, a Royal Australian Navy senior officer, and an engineer from the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group – the Australian equivalent of the French agency Direction Générale de l’Armement – took interest in the amphibious landing craft EDAR (built by the French company CNIM – “Constructions industrielles de la Méditerrannée”).
The Australian team and officers from the French LHD Dixmude, in front of the EDAR
Thanks to the EDAR, France has a versatile, fast, safe and simple way to land (either on a beach or without port infrastructures) which can embark the heaviest armoured gears.
The amphibious landing craft EDAR (picture from the French Navy))
The crew’s relevant officers responded to their counterparts’ technical questions. Indeed, the vessels able to transfer troops from a ship to a beach or a port, and vice-versa, are a key part of any military amphibious operation, and all the more for the transfer of heavy or logistics vehicles.
Talks and feedbacks between the officers
This visit, which fully falls within the activities of military cooperation between France and Australia, allowed both parties to exchange on their feedbacks and the technical aspects of this kind of operation, often complex to perform.
Colonel Yves LEVEQUE (France), French Liaison Officer to Army HQ, 1st June 2018