Immediately after the first flight of the prototype, the Italian air force ordered 6 copies of the HammerHead. This new drone was unveiled by Piaggio in the last edition of the Salon du Bourget. Directed from the elegant case aircraft P.180 Avanti II, this drone is a MALE for medium Altitude long Endurance. Able to fly for 16 hours at an altitude of 45,000 feet, this drone will be deployed by the Italian air force from 2016 for recognition of research missions.
A drone that could well succeed the American Reaper in Italy
After the failures of the EADS Talarion and the Mantis of the British BAE Systems on the market of the MALE (medium Altitude long Endurance) dominated by the United States and Israel, the Italian aviation industry demonstrates his knowledge do. Made from the case twin-turbine Aerospace Piaggio Avanti’s aircraft, its drone HammerHead took the air for the first time February 25, 2015. A pilot demonstrator was already flying from 2013 which enabled Finmeccanica to the flight and flight control system automated Selex ES, which now equips the unit. It is therefore a program conducted at 100% by the Italy which recorded on the day after a first command of the Italian Air Force. It has ordered 3 monitoring stations on the ground and 6 appliances. They will join the 32 ° Stormo of the Aeronautica Militare Italiana (AMI) by 2016. He will join 6 drones Reaper controlled by Italy in 2008. From 2013, the Italy was openly seeking an alternative to drones Americans, the US denying the Italians the right to arm their Reaper. During the official presentation of the HammerHead at the Paris Air Show 2013, General Claudio Debertolis evoked the possibility of arming these drones. The United States will yield they and will they allow Italy to arm its Reaper to cut the grass under the feet of the HammerHead? This first command seems to prove that Obama has proved inflexible and finally pushed the Italian air force to build on its national UAV.
The program demonstrates that the Europeans can become technologically at the level of the Americans and the Israelis for drones when they give the means. The Italy announced its willingness to open its program to other European partners, an opening that found no echo among other industrialists of the continent. HammerHead once again shows that a program goes much faster when it is led by a single country and not European agreements where each is often more concerned with defending its piece of the pie to progress quickly.
Translation : Bing Translator
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