Tag Archives: Italian Air Force

An ItAF C-130J crashes in Pisa

On Nov. 23, 2009, around 14.10 LT, a C-130J belonging to the 46^ Brigata Aerea, crashed in Pisa, next to the active runway (more or less here) causing the death of the 5 POB (People On Board). According to the eye witnesses that saw the aircraft crashing into the ground, the aircraft had just taken off from RWY 22L (even if some sources reported that the aircraft had just performed a  Touch & Go)  and was performing a left turn (for a right downwind?) when it lost altitude, hit the cables next to the nearby railway line and hit the ground. The reasons of the incident are obviously unknown. The two “black boxes” were immediately recovered and will be analysed to determine the root cause of the crash. The aircraft was performing a training sortie that foresaw a certain number of touch and go) and nothing can be excluded so far: for sure, with such a large aircraft, a human mistake (a stall) or a catastrophic failure (loss of hydraulic pressure, structural failure) during a low level close pattern could have a disastrous effect. I tend to exclude an engine failure since the C-130J is a 4 engine aircraft; a dual engine loss is extremely unlikely.
The aircraft involved was MM62176 “46-41″ depicted in the picture below (that I took on May 23, 2008, at Pratica di Mare airport); it was a KC-130J, a tanker capable of performing air-to-air refueling of various types of receivers.

"A special plane": air-to-air video of the special coloured F-104

Between 2003 and 2004, Piercarlo Ciacchi, a former F-104 pilot currently flying with the Frecce Tricolori display team, produced a series of videos he took flying with the Starfighter from Grazzanise, where its squadron, the 18° Gruppo, was temporary deployed. The following one is dedicated to the world famous 9-99, the red special colour of the 9° Stormo; the first and only Starfighter in special colour scheme ever made by the wing based in Grazzanise. The video is titled “Un aereo speciale” (“A special plane”) and you can watch it all by clicking the below image:

Armed Forces Day: departures from downtown Rome

The following images, showing the departure of the helicopters attending the exhibition in Rome for the Armed Forces Day celebration, were taken by Giovanni Maduli on Nov. 11, 2009. All but the EH-101 of the Marina Militare (Italian Navy, ItNy), that experienced a failure, and the A109 of the Guardia di Finanza, that returned to its homebase via ground transportation, took off from the Circus Maximus; the ruins of Ancient Rome on the Palatine Hill provided a striking background to the pictures.

Armed Forces Day: close up pictures

Following the article dealing with the Italian Armed Forces Day celebrations, below you can find some close up pictures of the aircraft and equipment displayed at the Circus Maximus exhibition, taken by Giovanni Maduli on Nov. 8, 2009.

Italian Armed Forces Day 04-08.11.09

The Italian Armed Forces celebrated the 91st Anniversary since the end of WWI with a series of events involving bases, airports and military installation all around the country. As happened in 2008, Circus Maximus (Circo Massimo) in Rome hosted an exhibition with equipment belonging to the Aeronautica Militare (Italian Air Force), Marina Militare (Italian Navy) and Guardia Costiera (Coast Guard), Esercito Italiano (Italian Army), Guardia di Finanza (Custom Police) and Carabinieri (Military Police). As the following pictures I took there on Nov. 7 show, aircraft, helicopters and much more (including flight gear) was displayed in each Armed Forces’ booths.

As happened last year (read http://cencio4.wordpress.com/2008/11/29/on-board-the-cavour-aircraft-carrier/) the second and largest Italian aircraft carrier Cavour was again in Civitavecchia harbour and could be visited by anybody who wanted to “embark”. Unfortunately, there were few photo opportunities, since unlike 2008, the aircraft inside the hangar could not be photographed. On the other side, many images could be taken on board the “Caio Duilio” (D554), that was next to the Cavour. The “Caio Duilio” is a brand new Anti-Air Warfare destroyer belonging to the Horizon Common New Generation Frigate (CNGF). The ship was taken on charge by the Marina Militare on Apr. 3, 2009 and it is equipped with a Sylver vertical launcher for 48 Aster 15 and 30 missiles, autonomous Command and Control capabilities, LRR S-1850 M long range radar, and PAAMS (Principal Anti Air Missile System) based on Windows 2000 software with an EMPAR multi-function radar. Interestingly, the ship was designed with straight lines that give the unit stealth (low observability) capabilities. The following pictures were taken by Giovanni Maduli.