June 23 (UPI) -- A heavy torpedo that French submarines will carry has entered its final development phase following qualification firing, a French defense contractor has announced.
DCNS said in a news release Thursday the qualification firing of its F21, part of the Artemas Program of the French arms procurement agency DGA, took place off the Var coast -- a continuation of firings since the end of 2016.
"The firing was performed in accordance with the test procedure and communications with the torpedo operational throughout the exercise," Artémis Programme Director for DCNS Franck Dostal said in a statement. "The data recorded in real time could retrace the entire mission, thus validating the achievement of all the goals."
The F21 weighs about 1.5 tons. It has a range of more than 31 miles, a speed of about 50 knots and an operational depth starting at about 32 feet.
The F21 is expected to enter service with the French navy beginning next year.
The Brazilian navy has also selected the F21 to equip its submarines.
DCNS said it will deliver 100 of the torpedoes to the French navy.