The French defence procurement agency (DGA) has awarded Thales a contract to prepare the future SOCRATE NG military telecommunication network.

Thales, the prime contractor of a consortium that includes Orange Business Services, Alcatel-Lucent and consulting firm Cogisys, will submit a technical and financial proposal to the DGA for the development of the network over the next 12 months.

The network is scheduled for deployment in 2010.

SOCRATE NG stands for Système Opérationnel Constitué à partir des Réseaux des Armées pour les Télécommunications de Nouvelle Génération. It will be a seamless unified network providing high quality, high bandwidth communication across mainland France and Corsica.