A pair of French Navy Dassault Super Etendards getting ready for their next mission on board the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle. Image released on 26 January 2015 while cruising towards the Indian Ocean (Image © Etat-major des armées / Marine nationale)

Etendards heading for Saudi Arabia

To the sun and beyond. Nice images released by the French Ministry of Defence shows French Naval Aviation Dassault Super Étendards strike aircraft on board the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, heading towards the Indian Ocean and Saudi Arabia.

The battle group Arromanches, built around the carrier, just crossed the Suez Canal on 26 January and continued in the Red Sea for the Indian Ocean. Charles de Gaulle is escorted by the air-defence frigate Chevalier Paul, the Royal Navy anti-submarine frigate HMS Kent, the oil tanker Meuse and an unnamed French Navy nuclear attack submarine.

On the agenda are military exercises with Saudi Arabia. The group already practiced military ops against the naval and air forces of Italy and Greece while sailing through the Mediterranean.

During its cruise group Arromanches will go through various scenarios, including fleet air defence, long distance attack by the air wing’s aircraft and anti-submarine protection.

The Super Étendards are in the autumn of their service life, as the Aéronavale plans to retire the type in 2016.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger, based on source information provided by the Ministère de la Défense
Featured image (above): A pair of French Navy Dassault Super Etendards getting ready for their next mission on board the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle. Image released on 26 January 2015 while cruising towards the Indian Ocean (Image © Etat-major des armées / Marine nationale)

One of three Grumman E-2C Hawkeye NP2000s enjoying the Golden Hour on board the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle. Notice the combat jets and choppers elsewhere on the deck  (Image © Etat-major des armées / Marine nationale)
One of three Grumman E-2C Hawkeye NP2000s enjoying the Golden Hour on board the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle. Notice the combat jets and choppers elsewhere on the deck (Image © Etat-major des armées / Marine nationale)