Permanently ready to keep the peace
The M4 generation of ballistic missiles, developed and produced by Airbus Defence and Space for the ballistic missile systems in France’s nuclear deterrent force, features multiple warheads and a range of more than 4,000km. They were incrementally deployed on the first-generation of nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines (SNLEs) from 1985, taking over from the previous M20 missiles.
Airbus Defence and Space also developed an enhanced version, the M45, with higher-performance TN75 nuclear warheads (stealthier and with penetration aids). The M45 entered service aboard Triomphant in spring 1997.
As prime contractor for the ballistic missile systems to the French Ministry of Defence’s procurement agency DGA and the French Navy, Airbus Defence and Space is also responsible for the development and manufacture of the weapon systems and weapon deployment systems, covering all operations necessary for ensuring operational support, continuity of the system and maintaining performance levels, as well as analysis of technical events occurring in service at the maritime base and onboard SNLEs, system design support and examination of engineering changes, user technical assistance, preparation and analysis of missile launch acceptance.