As an introduction, Pascal Pinot presented defense-oriented issues and perspectives of ENSTA Bretagne in terms of training, research and innovation.
A visit to the Research Center
Information and Communication Science and Technologies
The main reason for the Minister for Armed Forces visit was the development of new naval mine warfare systems – a field which involves a host of technologies. The information and communication science and technologies team presented their activities concerning the design of autonomous marine and submarine drone systems for long-term missions, cybersecurity, and new acoustic sensors and sonar image processing methods using artificial intelligence. ENSTA Bretagne is the only engineering school in France to have research teams in all these fields at its disposal.
In mechanical sciences, the defense-oriented research activities presented concerned the lifespan and resistance of materials and structures, knowledge of hydrodynamic impacts (naval platforms), the reduction of environmental footprints, additive manufacturing and also pyrotechnics, propulsion and explosive phenomena.
Inauguration of the new mechanical science research building
By unveiling a plaque, Florence Parly, French Minister for Armed Forces, inaugurated a new 1600 m² building which brings the total surface area of ENSTA Bretagne’s Research Center to 7500 m², including 4000 m² dedicated to mechanical sciences.
The new building provides new facilities for the study of material and pyrotechnical structures on a micro-structural scale. The equipment has been funded by Europe, the Ministry for Armed Forces, the Brittany Regional Council – Région Bretagne, the Department of Finistère Council and Brest City Council as part of the Plan Etat-Région regional development plan 2015-2020.
The Minister for Armed Forces’ Speech
The day finished with a speech by the Minister for Armed Forces given to the staff and students of ENSTA Bretagne. Here are a few extracts:
"What I have seen visiting your school today, is the excellence of the research, especially in the field of underwater robotics, acoustics, material and fluid mechanics, and cybersecurity."
"Maintaining the operational superiority of the armed forces of tomorrow is a challenge which is scientific, technological, technical, organizational and human at the same time. And to meet these challenges, we need you for sure".
"You are lucky to study in a school which promotes two lines of activities (civilian and military) and remember that is a strength because you double your field of vision and thus your possibilities".
"Your laboratories are worth their weight in gold, you should be aware of this, more emphasis should be placed on the potential value of the school’s laboratories especially to Ministry of Armed Forces’ stakeholders and the industries in our sector. That is why we have decided to strengthen the ties between your school and the Innovation and Defense Agency".
"Our defense is in your hands for the next 30 years, you are the hope of our country. Keep your passion, keep the passion of your youth, keep your optimism, cultivate your curiosity and seize all opportunities".