Description: The Dassault Neuron is a stealth UCAV jointly developed by a European consortium composed of France, Italy, Sweden, Greece, Spain, and Switzerland. The project started back in 1999, when the French company Dassault started its LOGIDUC program. The program was composed in three phases, and the Neuron (or Grand Duc, the name that Dasault chose for it in 1999) was the third and last phase. After two years, some European nations started joining the French project. The first one to enter was Italy with Alenia Aeronautica in mid-2005, followed by Switzerland with RUAG and Sweden with SAAB. After those nations joined the project, the UCAV name was changed from Grand Duc to Neuron (many times written as nEUROn, to underline the European collaboration). In the following year, two more countries joined the program: Spain with CASA and Greece with HAI (Hellenic Airspace Industry). After six years of development, the Neuron rolled out of the facility where it was constructed and was presented to the various partners’ governments. After 11 months, it made its first flight on December 1. After its first flight, the Neuron was subjected to a three-year test phase in France, where the flight performance of the aircraft was tested. A second, two-year test phase was started after the first one; this time the subject was the stealth capability of the aircraft. In 2015, the Neuron was transferred to Italy, in the Italian air base of Decimomannu. Here, the Neuron was subjected to an operational test that lasted one year. In 2016, the UCAV was moved to Visdel, Sweden, where live tests of the weaponry of the Neuron were conducted for another year. In the following year, it returned to France, where it performed various tests with the Charles De Gaulle aircraft carrier. The main objective of the Neuron in those exercises was to pierce the Charles de Gaulle defenses and radar thanks to its stealthy characteristics. The last series of tests were conducted in Spain in 2018 when various Eurofighters of the Spanish Air Force tried to lock and detect the stealthy drone, to test again the stealth characteristics of the drone. The drone is right now being used as a tech demo for the future drones of the countries that are part of the project as it was intended, and it is not planned to enter into service with any country or to be produced in more units. Talking about Italy in the Neuron project, Italy is the second Tier 1 partner after France, with a total of 22% of the project (it used to be 25% before the other nations joined).
Why it should be in the game: If in future the devs will add the possibility of havig multyple drones, this one could be added to trhee nations, France, Italy and Sweden (the only partner nations that are rapresented in game). In the case of the Italian tt (the subject of this suggestion) it could replace the american mq1 predator in the far future, when and if more drones will be introduced.
NEURON UCAV: development and operational assessment campaign pdf (document MP-SCI-269-15)
Pieno successo per la campagna di voli del NEURON presso la base dell'Aeronautica Militare di Decimomannu
Alenia lancia nEUROn
nEUROn, the European combat drone demonstrator: Introduction
Aim of the nEUROn program
nEUROn program milestones
Organization of the nEUROn program
nEUROn: innovative industrial solutions
nEUROn, an efficient European cooperation scheme
IQPC UCAV 2006: Neuron UCAV to have twin internal weapons bays | News | Flight Global