Feb. 8 (UPI) -- The French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle is in drydock in the port of Toulon for an 18-month refit and upgrade.
The carrier has been in service for 15 years and the French Navy said the midlife work will extend her operational life for at least 20 more years.
French shipbuilder DCNS is leading the upgrade and refit project. The French Navy's Fleet Support Service -- together with the DGA defense procurement agency -- will ensure quality control of the work.
Beyond standard maintenance operations, including refueling its nuclear reactor, the project will modernize the ship's combat system to maintain and increase interoperability with allied navies and allow the ship's transition to the "All Rafale" air wing.