Italy’s Leonardo is hoping to attract export customers for the ATR 72 MP maritime surveillance aircraft at the Langkawi International Maritime And Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) in Malaysia (21st to 25th March). The aircraft, which entered service with the Italian Air Force in December 2016, will be on show for the first time.
Leonardo sees significant export opportunities for the aircraft in the region due to its low cost of operation, ease of maintenance and versatility in a number of maritime roles.
The ATR 72MP, which was developed by Leonardo using the ATR 72-600 turboprop as a base, can perform roles including maritime patrol, search and identification of surface vessels, Command, Control and Communication, ISR, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, SAR (Search and Rescue) missions, the prevention of narcotics trafficking, piracy, smuggling, territorial water security and monitoring and intervention in the event of environmental catastrophes.
The aircraft shares many solutions which were developed for the ATR 72ASW for the Turkish Navy. It is equipped with Leonardo's ATOS mission system, which uses advanced data fusion techniques to present a single tactical picture to the operator that integrates information from all of the aircraft's on-board sensors. One key sensor is Leonardo's Seaspray AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) surveillance radar.
The aircraft uses the latest communication systems to transmit or receive information in real time to/from command and control centres either on the ground, in the air or at-sea. The ATR 72MP can fly missions lasting up to 10 hours.