Military Embedded Systems

Helicopter-UAV teaming demoed with Leonardo's AW159 Wildcat


October 21, 2020

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Leonardo photo.

UNITED KINGDOM. Leonardo demonstrated integrated capabilities between a manned aircraft and an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). This took place in the U.K. during Manned-Unmanned Teaming (MUMT) trials between a Leonardo AW159 Wildcat helicopter and a semi-autonomous UAV from Callen-Lenz Associates.

In this instance, MUMT is when a helicopter crew controls a UAV from the helicopter like it was an onboard sensor being controlled from the cockpit. By integrating control of the UAV into the Wildcat Mission System, officials claim that Leonardo was able to minimize the pilots’ workload. A Gateway Processor supplied by Callen-Lenz Associates was used to interface with its semi-autonomous UAV.

The Leonardo solution is intended to allow the Wildcat crew to control both the flight path and payload of the UAV using a task based Human Machine Interface (HMI), rather than a more operator-intensive approach.

According to the company, the continued development and integration of cutting-edge solutions across all domains of remotely-piloted and autonomous/semi-autonomous systems and technologies, including MUM-T, is an element of Leonardo’s BeTomorrow2030 Strategic Plan. 

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