Sagem’s shipborne Sigma 40 inertial navigation systems exceed 5 million hours of operation

Paris, Le Bourget, Euronaval exhibition - October 27, 2010

The Sigma 40 inertial navigation system by Sagem (Safran group) has passed the milestone of 5 million hours of operation in service. The data accumulated by this fleet clearly demonstrates the outstanding operational reliability of the naval Sigma 40, with MTBF (mean time between failure) of more than 35,000 hours. Operating data also shows that systems frequently exceed 50,000 hours in service without requiring any maintenance.

This exceptional performance, confirmed by feedback by a number of different navies worldwide, proves the unrivaled dependability of the laser gyro technology behind the Sigma 40. Based on a proprietary Sagem technology, these laser gyros combine high precision with the robustness demanded for maritime operation under severe conditions, and are used for both navigation and the ship's combat system.

The Sigma 40 is both an attitude and heading reference system (AHRS) and an inertial navigation system. It is offered in several versions, with different levels of performance and interfaces to match the needs of different ships, whether surface vessels or submarines (nuclear or conventional propulsion).

Sigma 40 inertial navigation systems equip ships of all types deployed by more than 30 navies worldwide. In particular, the Sigma 40 has been selected for many of today's leading naval shipbuilding programs, including the European multi-mission frigates FREMM, Mistral class projection and command ships ("BPC"), Scorpène class conventional attack submarines and Suffren class nuclear submarines (Barracuda program).

1 – MTBF : Mean Time Between Failures

2 – AHRS : Attitude and Heading Reference System

3 – BPC : Bâtiment de Projection et de Commandement


Sagem , a high-tech company in the Safran group, holds world or European leadership positions in optronics, avionics, electronics and safety-critical software for both civil and military markets. Sagem is the No. 1 company in Europe and No. 3 worldwide for inertial navigation systems (INS) used in air, land and naval applications. It is also the world leader in helicopter flight controls and the European leader in optronics and tactical UAV systems. Operating across the globe through the Safran group, Sagem and its subsidiaries employ 6,900 people in Europe, Southeast Asia and North America. Sagem is the commercial name of the company Sagem Défense Sécurité.

For more information:

Philippe Wodka-Gallien
Press Relations
+33 (0)1 58 11 19 49

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