Reinforcing efforts in the unmanned sector
Of the different types of UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), Leonardo‘s AWHERO is part of the tactical UAV fleet and falls into the 200kg weight class; it can perform land operations in remarkably difficult environments and, when deployed at sea, the unmanned helicopter is able to operate in particularly severe weather and sea conditions. Right from the early stages of its design, the system was also developed in order to meet the demanding requirements of operations carried out by naval units.
The AWHERO, which combines Leonardo‘s experience in the development of rotary wing platforms and in unmanned aircraft, can be used in missions carried out in the field or in naval missions to provide protection and support to the contingent; transport supplies and engage in anti-submarine and anti-piracy operations. It can also perform operations relating to national security; coastal and border patrols; ISTAR (Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance) missions; the detection, identification and monitoring of vessels; the monitoring of critical infrastructure and environmental research and monitoring.
Leonardo has been awarded the most important project related to the first European Defence Fund’s initiative, OCEAN2020, to boost Europe’s defence capabilities, issued by the European Union under the Preparatory Action on Defence Research programme. The first live demonstration of maritime surveillance, scheduled to take place in the Mediterranean Sea in 2019, will be coordinated by the Italian Navy and will see Leonardo’s AWHERO and SOLO unmanned helicopters operate from Italian naval units alongside other European partners.