It does not receive public funding Editor in chief: CLARA MOSCHINI
Airplanes. Leonardo at "GDA" exhibition in Kuwait (December 12-14)
Mishref, Kuwait - The industry presents technologies and competences in aeronautical, terrestrial and naval ambit
From December 12 to 14, Leonardo participates in the fourth edition of "Gulf Defense and Aerospace" ("GDA"), the international tri-service exhibition and conference held in Mishref, Kuwait.
The company strengthened its ties with Kuwait following the agreement for the supply of 28 Eurofighter Typhoon multi-role fighter aircraft, which made the country the airplane’s eighth customer. Kuwait’s Eurofighter Typhoons, deliveries of which will start in 2020 and conclude in 2023, will be the most advanced model produced so far, with a package of capabilities on top of the previous enhancement programmes that will include the Leonardo-led E-Scan radar and a number of weapon system upgrades. Together, these will put the Kuwait Air Force at the forward-edge of fighter technology when the aircraft enter into service. The Eurofighter Typhoon, where Leonardo is responsible for more than 60% of the electronics, is a key programme of reference for the industry in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Oman.
Recently, some Kuwait’s pilots have earned their wings at the Italian Air Force International Training Academy, where the Italian Air Force operates the M-346 Integrated Training System (ITS) made by Leonardo, which offers Live, Virtual, Constructive (LVC) training capabilities. The Italian Air Force’s jet pilot training school will combine Leonardo’s M-346 lead-in-fighter trainer with the soonto-be-introduced its M-345 basic/advanced trainer. This innovative training solution will be presented to delegations visiting the firm’s "GDA" stand (#1421) alongside one of the company’s training and remote support tools for land and naval systems. This latter system is an augmented reality tool where visitors will be able to explore the latest generation of sensors and systems on the bridge of a multi-role naval vessel, including in a battlefield or air-defence scenario.
Visitors to company’s stand will be able also to find out about its extensive range of airborne ISTAR products and systems via an interactive digital display. Of particular interest in the region is Leonardo’s readily-exportable Directed InfraRed Countermeasure (DIRCM) system, called ‘Miysis’, which protects aircraft from the threat of man-portable heat-seeking missiles. The company will also be highlighting its Falco family of Remotely-Piloted Aerial Systems (RPAS), having announced the first delivery of its Falco EVO RPAS to a Middle Eastern customer earlier last month.
As a global aerospace supplier, the industry provides air surveillance via its multi-functional, AESAbased KRONOS radar family, which includes naval versions. With several configurations available, customers can equip any naval vessel for applications ranging from point-defence to air and sea surveillance, littoral warfare, missile and gunfire support. The most recent example is the new Kronos Power Shield, an L-band, fully digital system, which will equip the Italian Navy’s new Landing Helicopter Dock. Here, the company will integrate Combat Management Systems (CMS) with radar and sensors.
The industry also has extensive experience in designing and providing comprehensive C4I solutions. Systems can be tailored to include everything from command and control centres to individual soldier systems, including a suite of Software Defined Radios (SDR) which can be seen on Leonardo’s stand at "GDA" (SWave VQ1 four-channel vehicular radio SWave Manpack Bi-Channel, SWave Enhanced Handheld-HHE), alongside the Lynx hand-held target acquisition system for all-weather observation and detection. Notably, Leonardo’s SDR HHE is the very latest in tactical soldier radio technology, providing reconfigurable and secure data and broadband network functions in addition to standard voice communications, with a weight and dimension comparable to a smartphone. For land applications, Leonardo also offers weapon stations such as the HITROLE 12,7mm RWS, HITFIST 30mm two man turret, HITFIST 30mm Overhead Weapon Station and the HITFACT 105/120mm turret. All such Weapon Station are suitable for installation on tracked and wheeled vehicles including 8x8s.
The firm strongly intends to improve relationship with Kuwait Navy also in the defence systems field, by supporting the “in service” systems and by promoting its new products for incoming and future requirements. The exhibition will give Leonardo an important opportunity to present its gun mounts and ammunition, particularly the 76/62 Super Rapid. This is able to dispense the company’s ‘Vulcano’ very-long-range guided ammunition and is compatible with the Strales system, allowing it to fire ‘DART’ guided ammunition to counteract highly manoeuvrable targets such as supersonic missiles and small, fast boats. For ASW operations, Leonardo offers its range of well-known light and heavyweight torpedoes, such as the Black Shark and Black Arrow, and its first-in-class products for both detection (bow and towed SONAR) and reaction (Mobile Target Emulators and Jammers).
In the Country, the company also provided a networking data infrastructure for Kuwait City airport including systems for the management of data traffic among the Country’s several airport systems, as well as a primary radar and an ADS-B (Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast) for air traffic control. The industry stands ready to work again with Kuwait’s national airport operators to upgrade their management technology and baggage handling systems to cope with an increasing number of travellers to the country.