Italian Ministry of Defense

Rome, Italy

Italian Ministry of Defense

Rome, Italy
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News Article | May 5, 2017

Gen. Claudio Graziano, Italian chief of defense, Gen. Carlo Magrassi, secretary general of defense/director of National Armament, Adm. Mathias Winter, deputy program executive officer at the F-35 Joint Program Office, Filippo Bagnato, Leonardo Aircraft Division's Managing Director, and Doug Wilhelm, Lockheed Martin F-35 Program Management vice president, spoke at the milestone event. "Italy is not only a valued F-35 program partner that has achieved many F-35 program 'firsts', but is also a critical NATO air component force, providing advanced airpower for the alliance for the coming decades," Wilhelm said. "Italian industry has participated in the design of the F-35 and Italian industry made components fly on every production F-35 built to date." The jet's first flight is anticipated in late August and it is programmed to be delivered to the Italian Ministry of Defense in November. In addition, two Italian F-35A aircraft will deliver from Cameri this year, the first by July and the second in the fourth quarter. To date, seven F-35As have been delivered from the Cameri FACO; four of those jets are now based at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, for international pilot training and three are at Amendola Air Base, near Foggio on the Adriatic coast. The Aeronautica Militare (Italian Air Force) has already flown more than 100 flight hours in its Amendola-based F-35As. After a series of confidence flights from Cameri, an Italian pilot will fly their first F-35B jet to Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, early in 2018 to conduct required Electromagnetic Environmental Effects certification. The next Italian F-35B aircraft is scheduled for delivery in November 2018. The Cameri FACO has the only F-35B production capability outside the United States and is programmed to produce a total of 30 Italian F-35Bs and 60 Italian F-35As, along with 29 F-35As for the Royal Netherlands Air Force, and retains the capacity to deliver to other European partners in the future. The Italian FACO is also producing 835 F-35A full wing sets to support all customers in the program. The FACO was selected by the U.S. Department of Defense in 2014 as the F-35 Lightning II Heavy Airframe Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul and Upgrade facility for the European region. The 101-acre facility includes 22 buildings and more than one million square feet of covered work space, housing 11 assembly stations, and five maintenance, repair, overhaul, and upgrade bays. On September 7, 2015, the first Italian-produced F-35 built at the Cameri FACO made the first international flight in F-35 program history, and in February 2016, the F-35A made the program's first trans-Atlantic crossing. In December 2016, the Italian Air Force's first F-35s arrived at the first in-country base, Amendola AB. The F-35 Lightning II is a 5th generation fighter, combining advanced stealth with fighter speed and agility, advanced mission systems, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and cutting-edge sustainment. Three distinct variants of the F-35 will replace the A-10 and F-16 for the U.S. Air Force, the F/A-18 for the U.S. Navy, the F/A-18 and AV-8B Harrier for the U.S. Marine Corps, and a variety of fighters for at least 11 other countries. The Italian F-35As and Bs replace the legacy Panavia Tornado, AMX and AV-8B aircraft. More than 200 production F-35s have been delivered fleet-wide and have flown more than 90,000 flight hours. More information is available online at and About Lockheed Martin Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 97,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:

Milillo P.,Jet Propulsion Laboratory | Tapete D.,Natural Environment Research Council | Cigna F.,Natural Environment Research Council | Perissin D.,Purdue University | And 7 more authors.
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering | Year: 2016

Structural health monitoring (SHM) of engineered structures consists of an automated or semi-automated survey system that seeks to assess the structural condition of an anthropogenic structure. The aim of an SHM system is to provide insights into possible induced damage or any inherent signals of deformation affecting the structure in terms of detection, localization, assessment, and prediction. During the last decade there has been a growing interest in using several remote sensing techniques, such as synthetic aperture radar (SAR), for SHM. Constellations of SAR satellites with short repeat time acquisitions permit detailed surveys temporal resolution and millimetric sensitivity to deformation that are at the scales relevant to monitoring large structures. The all-weather multi-temporal characteristics of SAR make its products suitable for SHM systems, especially in areas where in situ measurements are not feasible or not cost effective. To illustrate this capability, we present results from COSMO-SkyMed (CSK) and TerraSAR-X SAR observations applied to the remote sensing of engineered structures. We show how by using multiple-geometry SAR-based products which exploit both phase and amplitude of the SAR signal we can address the main objectives of an SHM system including detection and localization. We highlight that, when external data such as rain or temperature records are available or simple elastic models can be assumed, the SAR-based SHM capability can also provide an interpretation in terms of assessment and prediction. We highlight examples of the potential for such imaging capabilities to enable advances in SHM from space, focusing on dams and cultural heritage areas. © 2016 SPIE.

De Luca G.F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | Casonato G.,Italian Space Agency ASI | D'Amico F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | Fiorentino C.A.M.,Italian Space Agency ASI | And 10 more authors.
62nd International Astronautical Congress 2011, IAC 2011 | Year: 2011

COSMO-SkyMed is an Earth Observation space program funded by the Italian Ministry of Research and Italian Ministry of Defence (It-MoD) and conducted by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) in conjunction with It-MoD, which was designed in order to fulfill Dual-Use requirements in terms of different needs of Defence and Civilian Users, such as different requirements in data products, system performances, security needs, response time, request priority management and data accessibility/confidentiality, being a pioneer program in the frame of the Civil and Military Space Duality and representing a reference for future Earth Observation space programs. Furthermore, COSMO-SkyMed was designed in order to achieve Interoperability, Expandability with respect to additional Defence and Civilian Partners and Multi-Mission features, which are the bases for the establishment of international cooperation programs that have been set up by ASI and It-MoD or are going-on, such as the Italian-French cooperation named ORFEO (Optical and Radar Federated Earth Observation) and the Italian-Argentinean cooperation named SIASGE (Sistema Ítalo Argentine de Satélites para la Gestión de Emergencias). In such a context, a significant example of successful COSMO-SkyMed international partnership is the recent French Defence User Ground Segment (F-DUGS) integration within COSMO-SkyMed system. The aim of this paper is to show the COSMO-SkyMed conceived architecture, the experienced operational implications collected in operating the system from the launch of the first COSMO-SkyMed satellite until the completion of the constellation and the integration of the French Partner into the system, highlighting the lessons learned and the experienced challenges to fulfill very innovative and demanding requirements.

De Luca G.F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | Cecchini A.,Italian Ministry of Defense | Nardone F.,Italian Ministry of Defense | D'Amico F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | And 6 more authors.
62nd International Astronautical Congress 2011, IAC 2011 | Year: 2011

COSMO-SkyMed is an Earth Observation space program funded by the Italian Ministry of Research and Italian Ministry of Defence (It-MoD) and conducted by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) in conjunction with It-MoD. In the framework of the programmatic phase concerning the maintenance of the constellation in operational conditions, already in place, new parameters have been conceived in order to automatically monitor end-to-end system performances and engineering support efficiency. Aim of this paper is to describe all the parameters currently used to measure availability, effectiveness and efficiency figures of COSMO-SkyMed system, the lessons learned and optimization strategies concerning the parameters used during the development phase, with a particular focus on the new parameters recently designed and introduced to assess anomalies and non conformance management process efficiency. Methodologies, process architecture solutions, parameters detailed algorithms, test cases and validation strategy will be assessed in this paper, pointing out how the conceived frame gives the system owner the right confidence of an automatic monitoring of the end-to-end performances of the COSMO-SkyMed system.

Caltagirone F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | Porfilio M.,Italian Space Agency ASI | De Luca G.F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | D'Amico' F.,Italian Space Agency ASI | And 10 more authors.
62nd International Astronautical Congress 2011, IAC 2011 | Year: 2011

COSMO-SkyMed is an Earth Observation space programme funded by the Italian Ministry of Research and Italian Ministry of Defence (It-MoD) and conducted by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) in conjunction with It-MoD. In November 2010 the fourth and last COSMO-SkyMed satellite was successfully launched and integrated into the constellation after the positive conclusion of the commissioning phase in January 2011. The four satellites are placed in the same sun-synchronous dawn-dusk frozen orbit, designed in such a way to fulfil dual needs and to optimize the performances for a wide range of Civilian applications (e.g. risks management, agriculture/forestry, marine/coastal, geology) and Defence applications (surveillance, intelligence, crisis management, mission planning). The baseline four-satellite constellation configuration foresees that the satellites are placed on the same orbital plane with a difference of 90, 180, 270 and 360 deg in their respective anomalies. Currently the orbital configuration is composed of three satellites (namely PFM, FM#2 and FM#4) placed with a difference of 0, 180, and 270 deg in their respective anomalies, while a fourth satellite (namely FM#3) is placed in a tandem-like configuration with FM#2 (i.e. one-day temporal decorrelation). The aim of this paper is to analyze the orbital flexibility of COSMO-SkyMed constellation by performing a survey of the possible orbital interferometric configurations which could be achieved by the full COSMO-SkyMed constellation (e.g. tandem, tandem-like, double one-day tandem configuration, etc), focusing on their main features (e.g. temporal decorrelation, degradation of the temporal performances respect to the nominal equi-phased configuration, etc), providing a preliminary quantitative assessment of the interferometric products quality performance.

Casonato G.,Italian Space Agency ASI | L'Abbatc M.,Thales Alenia | Venditti P.,Thales Alenia | Bagaglini F.,Thales Alenia | And 5 more authors.
Proceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC | Year: 2012

The Payload Data Handling and Transmission (PDHT) is a subsystem operating on board Earth observation satellites to provide handling and transmission to Ground of the data acquired by high resolution radar instruments, typically Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). The really challenging needs, according to the requirements stated by ASI and I-MoD, of the COSMO Second Generation (CSG) mission, requires very high performances in terms of SAR acquisition data rates and data volumes per orbit, leading to a Payload Data Handling and Transmission (PDHT) architecture design completely new with respect to the present flight proven solution. On the first generation of COSMO Sky-Med (CSK) satellites the SAR payload produces one data flow with a maximum rate of 600Mbps; on CSG the SAR is designed to simultaneously operate in dual polarization with an higher resolution, providing to the PDHT two input data flows with an overall input data rate almost quadruple of the CSK one. Therefore, a significant improvement of the state of art PDHT storage capability and downlink performances are resulted necessary. The competitive mission needs together with the availability of good technology maturity level and the consequent compatibility with the programme time schedule have driven the trade-off phase allowing the identification of a new and high performance technological and architectural PDHT solution. The baseline PDHT solution has been identified; it is designed with a faster data acquisition interface and with a new modulation and coding scheme, the 4D-TCM 8PSK with Reed Solomon and interleaving, to enhance spectral efficiency and to allow increasing the downlink capabilities (higher than 500Mbps). Details on the PDHT baseline architecture for high performance real time data handling and transmission in the frame of Cosmo Second Generation mission will be provided highlighting the main features in terms of architectural and technological aspects. Copyright © (2012) by the International Astronautical Federation.

Caltagirone F.,ASI Agenzia Spaziale Italiana | De Luca G.,ASI Agenzia Spaziale Italiana | Covello F.,ASI Agenzia Spaziale Italiana | Marano G.,Italian Ministry of Defense | And 2 more authors.
International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS) | Year: 2010

COSMO-SkyMed is a Dual-Use program, devoted to produce both civilian and military applications, and as such it is required to have a fast response time, to manage conflicts and to optimize resources. In order to provide operational continuity to COSMO-SkyMed mission, the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and Italian Ministry of Defense (It-MoD) are conceiving the next generation of the system. The new system, called "COSMO-SkyMed Seconda Generazione" (CSG), starting from the well established design of the first generation, will provide the end user with outstanding characteristics consolidating its position in the frame of SAR Systems. After a description of the current COSMO-SkyMed unique in-orbit performances, functionalities and Dual-Use operations, with examples of data already acquired in the last few years, the paper will introduce the CSG mission describing the main features and capabilities that will drive the design of the new system. © 2010 IEEE.

Sabatini R.,Cranfield University | Richardson M.A.,Cranfield University | Cantiello M.,Italian Ministry of Defense | Toscano M.,Italian Ministry of Defense | And 3 more authors.
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering | Year: 2012

This paper describes the developmental and testing activities conducted by the Italian Air Force Official Test Centre (RSV) in collaboration with Alenia Aerospace, Litton Precision Products and Cranfiled University, in order to confer the Night Vision Imaging Systems (NVIS) capability to the Italian TORNADO IDS (Interdiction and Strike) and ECR (Electronic Combat and Reconnaissance) aircraft. The activities consisted of various Design, Development, Test and Evaluation (DDT&E) activities, including Night Vision Goggles (NVG) integration, cockpit instruments and external lighting modifications, as well as various ground test sessions and a total of eighteen flight test sorties. RSV and Litton Precision Products were responsible of coordinating and conducting the installation activities of the internal and external lights. Particularly, an iterative process was established, allowing an in-site rapid correction of the major deficiencies encountered during the ground and flight test sessions. Both single-ship (day/night) and formation (night) flights were performed, shared between the Test Crews involved in the activities, allowing for a redundant examination of the various test items by all participants. An innovative test matrix was developed and implemented by RSV for assessing the operational suitability and effectiveness of the various modifications implemented. Also important was definition of test criteria for Pilot and Weapon Systems Officer (WSO) workload assessment during the accomplishment of various operational tasks during NVG missions. Furthermore, the specific technical and operational elements required for evaluating the modified helmets were identified, allowing an exhaustive comparative evaluation of the two proposed solutions (i.e., HGU-55P and HGU-55G modified helmets). The results of the activities were very satisfactory. The initial compatibility problems encountered were progressively mitigated by incorporating modifications both in the front and rear cockpits at the various stages of the test campaign. This process allowed a considerable enhancement of the TORNADO NVIS configuration, giving a good medium-high level NVG operational capability to the aircraft. Further developments also include the design, integration and test of internal/external lighting for the Italian TORNADO "Mid Life Update" (MLU) and other programs, such as the AM-X aircraft internal/external lights modification/testing and the activities addressing low-altitude NVG operations with fast jets (e.g., TORNADO, AM-X, MB-339CD), a major issue being the safe ejection of aircrew with NVG and NVG modified helmets. Two options have been identified for solving this problem: namely the modification of the current Gentex HGU-55 helmets and the design of a new helmet incorporating a reliable NVG connection/disconnection device (i.e., a mechanical system fully integrated in the helmet frame), with embedded automatic disconnection capability in case of ejection. © 2012 SPIE.

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