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By Julian Nettlefold, Editor, BATTLESPACE

“At Finmeccanica, we have made it company policy to develop a complete range of UAVs, payloads and capabilities in-house,” Michael Lenton, Group Strategy Director of Selex Sensors and Airborne Systems told BATTLESPACE at IDEX.

“We have developed expertise in UAVs throughout Finmeccanica at Selex, Alenia and Galileo Avionica in particular. We describe Finmeccanica’s expertise in AESA radars in our AESA feature.,” he continued

Galileo Avionica’s Simulators and UAV Business Unit, is the indisputable Italian leader in UAVs. Galileo’s capabilities include specialisation in every aspect of UAV technology from EO/IR platforms thru SAR/MTI and Hyperspectral systems to NBC sensors. Products range from small UAVs to target drones


Sky X is an Alenia Aeronautica UAV programme dedicated to the development and demonstration of key technologies in the field of UCAV and URAV systems, even if, due to its flexibility, it can be a useful demonstrator also for dual use or civil applications. The Sky-X was flown for the first time in May 2005. The Sky-X is about 7 metres long and has a wing span of almost 6 metres. It can carry a technological pay-load of 200 kg with a maximum take-off weight of 1100 kg. The data and experience acquired through the Sky-X research program will increase Alenia Aeronautica’s technological know-how, also in view of industrial agreement for the Italian participation in the European programme “Neuron”, joined so far by six countries: France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.


The Mirach 100/5 system designed and developed by Galileo Avionica, represents the state of the art in the field of Aerial Target Drones and can be used for normal training in anti-aircraft missile firing by naval and ground units or for the evaluation and qualification of missiles under development. Mirach 100/5 effectively simulates a missile or a fighter aircraft carrying out “g” weave manoeuvres by using infrared countermeasures and simulating high thermal augmentation.

As for missile qualification, Mirach 100/5 is able to measure with extreme precision, by means of a special sensor aboard, the trajectory and attitude of a missile and transmit the data to the ground control station in real time. The Mirach 100/5 system has been further enhanced with the addition of a mini-UAV secondary aerial target drone named Locusta. Designed and developed by Galileo Avionica, Locusta received last June from the German Defence Ministry (BWB) a qualification certificate as an Anti Radiation Missile Simulator (ARMS) for the Tactical Firings of the German Aeronautics with Patriot Arm System. The qualification programme concluded by performing a real mission where the Locusta has been intercepted by a Patriot Missile, while the Mirach 100/5 completed its mission and was successfully recovered.

Adopted in Great Britain, France, Italy, Spain and by the Namfi rifle-range polygon (NATO Missile Firing Installation) in Creta, the Mirach 100/5 system is able to cope with eight aerial target drones flying at the same time. It is also capably of flying alone or in group at high-subsonic speed.


FALCO System is a TUAV (Tactical UAV) & MAE (Medium Altitude Endurance) UAS, performing 14 hours endurance, 420Kg MTOW and 70Kg of payload weight. The FALCO set a new standard in its category offering performance/price rate. Falco is the first UAV to have obtained the “permit to fly”, a civil certificate from the Italian Aeronautic Authority. Falco has also flown in Britain at ParcAberporth, thanks to the “endorsement” by the British Civil Aviation Authority, and is now involved in flight activities and demonstrations for customers at the Bulgarian runway of Chesnegirovo.

The UAV can carry a 70 kg payload and operate for 14 hours. Moreover it can integrate a wide range of sensors and multi-sensor platforms: Colour TV, Spo

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