Paris Air Show 2017 : Leonardo unveils M-346FA fighter aircraft

      Leonardo has unveiled M-346FA (Fighter Attack) twin-seat multi-role fighter jet at the Paris Air Show 2017.

      Leonardo claims M-346FA is a highly effective low-cost, tactical solution suited to air-to-ground scenarios, performing close air support (CAS) and counterinsurgency(COIN) missions, and Interdiction with Precision Guided Munitions (PGM), air-to-air (air policing and airspace control) and tactical reconnaissance.

      The M-346FA is a low cost light fighter based on the M-346AJT (Advanced Jet Trainer). It is equipped with Leonardo’s Grifo M346 multi-mode radar specifically optimized for the M-346FA. The four channel fly-by-wire (FBW) flight control system provides redundancy and have envelope protection for care free handling.

      The M-346FA has six under wing and one under fuselage hard-point, capable of carrying a 2,650 kg payload and can carry variety of air-to-air and air-ground weapons (laser/GPS guided and non-guided) and several external loads including gun, reconnaissance or target designation pod.

      This includes GBU-12/16 (500/1000 lb) Paveway II Laser-Guided Bomb (LGB), Lizard 2 LGB (500 lb), GBU-38 (500 lb) JDAM, GBU-32 (1000 lb) JDAM, GBU-49 (500 lb) Enhanced Paveway II GPS/LGB, Lizard 4 GPS/LGB (500 lb), Small Diameter Bomb (SDB), MK.82HD Snakeye (500 lb) general-purpose bomb, MK.83 (1000 lb) general-purpose bomb, Rocket Launchers, Gun pod, Air-to-Air Missiles (Iris-T and AIM-9L), Up to 3 External Fuel tanks (630 lt each), Recce pod and Target Designator Pod.

      It is also possible to integrate Tactical Data Link, self-protection system, Helmet Mounted Display (HMD) system, Voice Command, Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system, Secure Communications system, electronic warfare (EW) pod and a radar cross section (RCS) reduction kit.

      The aircraft has a maximum level speed of 590 KTAS, MTOW of 22,930 lbs (10,400 kg) and flight ceiling of 45,000 ft.

Source: Leonardo

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