In the last few days Selex Galileo has flight-tested its Falco UAV for the first time with the company’s Gabbiano T20N radar installed. Typically the Falco carries the Selex Galileo PicoSAR multi-mode AESA radar in the nose, but the Gabbiano provides an option giving enhanced maritime capability.
Selex Galileo has announced a new sale for its Falco tactical unmanned air system, bringing the number of export customers to four. The company has also revealed that more than 50 air vehicles are in operation.
At last week’s Paris Air Show Selex Galileo displayed a larger version of its Falco unmanned air vehicle, fitted with longer wings for greater endurance and better payload capability. Designated Falco EVO, the new version has a wingspan of 12.5 meters (41 feet) compared with 7.2 meters (23.62 feet), allowing an increase in maximum takeoff weight to 650 kilograms (1,430 pounds), up from 450 kg (990 pounds).
It has been little more than a century since mankind figured out how birds do it and applied that knowledge to slipping the surly bonds. Ever since, we have been relying on the airfoil shape of a bird’s wing to shed gravity’s shackles and enter the sky on wings of our own. We have applied that same clever curvature to propellers, to the blades that force air through turbine engines and to the other end of a helicopter’s collective control.