Leonardo carried out the first test flight of the new member of the Falco family, unveiled at Paris Air Show latest edition.
On January 15, the Falco Xplorer S/N0001 took off from Trapani Air Force base cruised over the Gulf of Trapani in a dedicated fly zone, for around 60 minutes and then returned to base, landing safely. Leonardo’s Falco Xplorer thus achieved its maiden flight. The new member of the Falco family, unveiled at Paris Air Show 2019, will now embark on a series of flight campaigns which will assess its endurance of over 24h with a max payload of 350kg as well as the aircraft’s full range of capabilities including its integrated sensor system. Indeed, the RPAS features a sensor suite that includes Leonardo’s Gabbiano T-80 multi-mode surveillance radar, SAGE electronic intelligence system, an automatic identification system for maritime missions and an Electro-Optical (EO) turret. An optional hyperspectral sensor will allow the Falco Xplorer to monitor pollution and agricultural development since the drone manufactured by Leonardo addresses military as well as civil strategic surveillance issues.
Leonardo also intends to obtain STANAG 4671 airworthiness certification to allow its Falco Xplorer to operate in other NATO members airspace.