UN launches unmanned surveillance
Selex ES Falco tactical unmanned aerial System (UAS) took to the air to begin its role supporting the United Nation (UN) peacekeeping operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Selex ES was awarded a three-year contract for the Falco UAS to provide information gathering and surveillance capability to the UN operations along the Rwandan and Ugandan borders.
The Falco is an unarmed mission-proven medium altitude, medium endurance UAV capable of operating from semi-prepared airstrips with fully automated take-off, landing and mission execution capability.
The vehicles for the UN peacekeeping missions were transported from Italy with the support of the Italian Air Force on-board a C-130J aircraft operated by the Pisa-based 46th Aerobrigade. The flight took off on November 13 from Pisa airport and stopped in Luxur, Egypt, and Nairobi, Kenya for platform maintenance. The C-130J arrived and unloaded the Falco at Goma Airport in Congo on November 15.
The platform was selected for the UN peacekeeping mission in the DRC because of its proven ability to perform long endurance surveillance missions, its outstanding availability, ease of deployment and excellent track record in service operations. They have a range of 250-km from their base in Goma with the possibility of a greater surveillance range with the addition of further bases that can easily be set up.