07 Apr 11. SELEX Galileo, a Finmeccanica Company, today announced the delivery of the NATO Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) programme proposal from prime contractor Northrop Grumman Corporation. AGS is the most ambitious transatlantic, co-operative NATO programme to date. It will provide a new Intelligence Surveillance-Reconnaissance (ISR) capability specially suited to modern operational scenarios. NATO AGS is led by Northrop Grumman Corporation. SELEX Galileo plays a leading role in the European part of the programme alongside EADS Cassidian.
“This important programme is based on strong translatlantic cooperation between industry leaders in defence and security and will help to meet NATO’s urgent operational requirements.” said SELEX Galileo CEO Fabrizio Giulianini, adding “SELEX Galileo is a leader in ISR systems, and the Company will play a major role in helping the AGS programme address new operational scenarios characterised by increasingly diverse and intense threats.”
SELEX Galileo is the programme’s industrial lead in Italy, and will also be responsible for cooperative activities with industrial partners from participating nations Romania and Bulgaria.
The Company will be playing a leading role in the mission operation support and management as well as mission communications, the latter in collaboration with SELEX Communications, a fellow Finmeccanica company. SELEX Galileo’s role as Italian industry lead is especially relevant as the AGS programme’s main operating base will be sited at the NATO facility in Sigonella, Sicily.
Giovanni Oliveri, SELEX Galileo’s NATO AGS Programme Director, commented on the news saying “SELEX Galileo is proud to have contributed to reach this important milestone. We are now ready to provide all necessary support to enable NATO to award the contract in July 2011 as planned.”
08 Apr 11. Reaper, the RAF’s Remotely Piloted Aircraft has reached a landmark 20,000 operational flying hours over Afghanistan, the MOD announced today. The 39 Squadron aircraft have proven themselves as the eyes in the sky for front line troops. Reaper was introduced in October 2007 and with its array of high tech sensors and precision guided weapons, it can carry out a wide range of missions to support forces in Afghanistan. It can gather pre-raid intelligence on target compounds, assist in countering IEDs (improvised explosive devices) and provide surveillance for routine patrols and supply convoys. Reaper can use its sensors day and night to spy on insurgent activity for hours at a time and at a range where they are undetected from the ground. The images are complemented by radar, mounted in the nose of the aircraft, gathering another dimension of detailed imagery that is analysed by a team of highly trained intelligence specialists in military bases around the world. If necessary, Reaper can also strike at insurgents with a range of precision guided weapons.
Reflecting on the achievement, Air Officer Commanding 2 Group, Air Vice Marshal Philip Osborn, said: “The RAF’s Reaper force has proven itself time and again in combat and is an essential element of the RAF’s combat intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance capability. The real time, day and night video coverage of the battle space combined with the extensive use of onboard radar provides a unique, cost effective and sustained capability that enhances the safety of troops on the ground. This cutting-edge remotely piloted aircraft provides an impressive range of capabilities that are saving lives and making a real difference to the troops in Afghanistan.
08 Apr 11. Reaper Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA): Flying Hours. The MoD reported (8 Apr 11) that Reaper RPA has reached a landmark 20,000 Operational flying hours over Afghanistan. Flown by 39 Squadron, Reaper was introduced in October 2007 and “can use its sensors day and night to spy on insurgent activity for hours at a time and at a range where they are undetected fro