Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Arms Warships & Submarines Military Ranks Military Pay Chart (2024)
Naval Warfare

FS Surcouf (F711)

Frigate Warship [ 1997 ]

FS Surcouf F711 is the second ship in the five-strong French Navy La Fayette-class of frigates.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 11/09/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

The La Fayette-class is a series of surface warships employed by the navies of France, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and Taiwan - numbering some twenty total vessels in the group. The vessels are classified as "multi-mission" frigates able to undertake a variety of ocean-going operations as required - either independently or as part of a larger fighting force. In modern day usage, frigates tackle anti-submarine operations as well as add defense capabilities to other ships of the fleet during task force-type participation.

The La Fayette-class as operated by the French Navy includes Surcouf (F711), a warship laid down on July 6th, 1992 at the Lorient Naval Dockyard and launched on July 3rd, 1993. She was formally commissioned on February 7th, 1997 and named after French privateer Robert Surcouf (1773-1827). Displacing nearly 4,000 tons under full load, the vessel is outfitted with all-modern, fast-processing, digitally-assisted suites that provide the crew with the best reaction possible to whatever scenario befalls the ship. She carries an advanced air-surface search radar, radio and radar interception equipment, a digital Fire Control System (FCS), and navigation radar. Twin Dagaie Mk 2 chaff launchers protect against incoming missile threats and a "Prairie-Masker" component serves in the noise-reduction role. Additional equipment helps to make the Surcouf a harder to define target against hunting submarines. Her typical crew complement is 140 including twelve officers.

Due to her multi-mission minded design approach, Surcouf is outfitted with a variety of weapons to suite the battlefield need. This begins with 8 x Exocet (MM40 Block II) anti-ship missile launchers to target surface threats. The primary turreted deck gun is a 100mm TR autocannon with unobstructed views over the bow - suitable for engaging surface threats at range or contributing to an offshore bombing effort during amphibious assaults. 2 x 20mm Modele F2 conventional guns are carried for medium-to-short-ranged defense. A Crotale CN2 launcher is fitted as an aircraft/missile counter with access to eight ready-to-fire missiles in addition to sixteen reloads waiting.

Outwardly, engineers of the Surcouf and her class have opted for an all-modern warship appearance, doing away with the lines of railing common to warships for centuries prior. Instead, a slab-sided approach had been adopted by navies of the world in which protruding structural details are kept at a minimum and, in turn, help minimize the ship's radar signature - revealing a very clean design form. The main mast then becomes an enclosed skyward-reaching structure and the smoke funnels are obscured from view. The forecastle manages the sole 100mm deck gun with the bridge attached to the main superstructure. Boat launches are fitted along the sides of the vessel to support quick-reaction strike and intercept forces as well as special operations initiatives. Over the stern is a helicopter launch and retrieval deck with attached service hangar - the hanger can serve a single medium-lift helicopter or similar aircraft. Helicopters can be transport types or anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)/Anti-Ship types to further broaden the tactical usefulness of the Surcouf.

Power to the vessel is through 4 x SEMT Pielstick 12PA6V280 conventional diesel engines developing 21,000 horsepower. This provides the ship with speeds of 25 knots and a range of 7,000 nautical miles.

Beginning service prior to the end of the last century, Surcouf has produced an active resume of naval service including support of several U.N.-related actions such as that in Kosovo during the Balkan Wars. The ship has been used on several occasions to come to the aid of persons aboard damaged or sinking vessels, saving lives in the process. Surcouf has also been released by the French government to take part in joint multinational initiatives to promote better responses to emerging threats - this work has included both British and American naval forces. During late 2012, she was deployed near Somalia to curtail the piracy threat, even taking on a British naval Lynx helicopter and British personnel as part of the mission in a move to bring the two world military powers closer together amidst growing world threats and shrinking defense budgets.

There are five vessels in the La Fayette-class which includes La Fayette (F710), Surcouf (F711), Courbet (F712), Aconit (F713), and Guepratte (F714). The French Navy ocean-going submarine of World War 2 - FS Surcouf NN3 - has also carried the Surcouf name into battle.©MilitaryFactory.com
Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.MilitaryFactory.com. It is the product of many hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, veterans, insiders, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at MilitaryFactory AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.


Service Year

France national flag graphic

In Active Service.

La Fayette-class

FS La Fayette (F710); FS Surcouf (F711); FS Courbet (F712); FS Jaureguiberry / Aconit (F713); FS Guepratte (F714)

National flag of France France
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Offshore Bombardment
Offshore bombardment / attack of surface targets / areas primarily through onboard ballistic weaponry.
Offshore strike of surface targets primarily through onboard missile / rocket weaponry.
Maritime Patrol
Active patroling of vital waterways and maritime areas; can also serve as local deterrence against airborne and seaborne threats.
Airspace Denial / Deterrence
Neutralization or deterrence of airborne elements through onboard ballistic of missile weaponry.
Fleet Support
Serving in support (either firepower or material) of the main surface fleet in Blue Water environments.

410.0 ft
124.97 m
50.5 ft
15.39 m
15.7 ft
4.79 m

Installed Power: 4 x SEMT Pielstick 12PA6V280 STC2 diesel turbines developing 21,000 horsepower.
Surface Speed
25.0 kts
(28.8 mph)
7,000 nm
(8,055 mi | 12,963 km)

kts = knots | mph = miles-per-hour | nm = nautical miles | mi = miles | km = kilometers

1 kts = 1.15 mph | 1 nm = 1.15 mi | 1 nm = 1.85 km
8 x Exocet MM40 Block II anti-ship missiles
1 x 100mm TR deck gun
2 x 20mm Modele F2 Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWSs)

Optional support for 16 x Aster 15 anti-aircraft/anti-missile missiles in Vertical Launch System (VLS).

Supported Types

Graphical image of a modern warship turreted deck gun armament
Graphical image of an aircraft Gatling-style rotating gun
Graphical image of an aircraft anti-ship missile

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)
1 x Eurocopter Panther naval warfare or NHIndustires NH90 transport helicopter.

Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War period
Military lapel ribbon for early warship designs
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2

Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective naval campaigns / operations / periods.

Images Gallery

1 / 5
Image of the FS Surcouf (F711)
Image from the United States Department of Defense imagery database.
2 / 5
Image of the FS Surcouf (F711)
Image from the United States Department of Defense imagery database.
3 / 5
Image of the FS Surcouf (F711)
Image from the United States Department of Defense imagery database.
4 / 5
Image of the FS Surcouf (F711)
Image from the United States Department of Defense imagery database.
5 / 5
Image of the FS Surcouf (F711)
Image from the United States Department of Defense imagery database.

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2024 Military Pay Chart Military Ranks DoD Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content; site is 100% curated by humans.

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org (World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft), WDMMW.org (World Directory of Modern Military Warships), SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane, and MilitaryRibbons.info, cataloguing military medals and ribbons. Special Interest: RailRoad Junction, the locomotive encyclopedia.

©2023 www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-2023 (20yrs)