A drone Leonardo designed for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions took its first flight last week as part of assessment activities by the Italian air force.
The Falco Xplorer S/N0001 flew Jan. 15 for approximately one hour after taking off from the Trapani AF base in Italy, the company said Friday.
Leonardo built the remotely piloted air system with a sensor suite that includes an electronic intelligence system and a multimode surveillance radar. The RPAS is designed to carry up to 771.6 pounds of payload and operate for more than 24 hours at an altitude of up to 24K feet.
Falco Xplorer, which is intended to support military and civil ISR operations, can accommodate a hyperspectral sensor component to record agricultural data and track pollution.
The flight test series aims to evaluate the drone against NATO’s STANAG 4671 airworthiness requirements for unmanned aerial vehicle systems. Certification of the aircraft will expand its permitted area of operations.
Leonardo noted it offers the RPAS as an integrated platform or a managed service.