Leonardo has introduced its new aerial target drone at the 2017 Paris Air Show.

Leonardo say the decision is based on the company’s experience with its successful Mirach 100/5.

According to a statement received by the UK Defence Journal:

“The M-40 is a remotely-piloted aerial system (RPAS) that supports Armed Forces training by simulating a range of airborne threat targets. Able to convincingly mimic a variety of aircraft and missiles, the target drone can simulate radar, infrared (IR) and visual threats. This allows Armed Forces to ‘shoot down’ the reusable M-40 in realistic scenarios, allowing them to train with and qualify a wide variety of weapon systems. Developed in-house by Leonardo using commercial components, the M-40 is readily exportable around the world.

Responding to the fact that customers worldwide increasingly need to ‘do more with less’, the M-40 builds on Leonardo’s experience with the Mirach 100/5 to offer a majority of the performance of such a model at a significantly reduced cost. The M-40 is suitable for a range of training purposes, from Ground Based Air Defence (GBAD) artillery training to the simulation of high-performance aerial threats for Navy and Air Force training. Leonardo will also continue to offer the Mirach 100/5 alongside the M-40 to simulate the highest-performance threats facing modern Air Forces.

The M-40 uses the same ground control station as the Mirach 100/5, meaning that pilots need very little training to switch to the new drone and armed forces can operate mixed fleets of M-40 and Mirach 100/5 drones.”

The new Mirach 40 (M-40) is designed to ‘provide medium-to-high performance at a price comparable with competitors’ entry-level drones’.

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4 years ago

I wonder how well these drones stack up against modern missiles in respect of speed and radar signature. Obviously when you know a missile is incoming and standing ready for it, as would happen in any test situation its not very realistic but interesting to know how accurate the drops are themselves.

Nick Bowman
Nick Bowman
4 years ago

I’m thinking along the same lines, Steve. It would be helpful to be able to practice defending saturation attacks by supersonic asms. Solo subsonic drone targets provide little except a false sense of security.