AMX International AMX

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The AMX International AMX is a ground-attack aircraft for battlefield interdiction, close air support and reconnaissance missions. The AMX is designated A-11 Ghibli by the Italian Air Force and A-1 by the Brazilian Air Force. The Italian name, "Ghibli", is taken from the hot dry wind of the Libyan desert, and is a traditional name within the Italian Air Force.

During the early 1970s, Italian manufacturer Aermacchi conducted a design study on a prospective light ground attack aircraft, which was given the designation of MB-340. During early 1977, the Italian Air Force issued a requirement for 187 new-build strike fighters, which were to replace its existing Aeritalia G.91 in the close air support. During 1980, the Brazilian government announced that they intended to participate in the program as a replacement for the Aermacchi MB-326. As a result of a memorandum between Italy and Brazil for the type's joint development in 1981, AMX International, an Italian-Brazilian joint venture, was formed to develop, manufacture, and market the aircraft. Emphasized key features of the new aircraft, known simply as AMX, were accessibility and survivability.

The AMX is capable of operating at high subsonic speed and low altitude, by day or night, and if necessary, from bases with poorly equipped or damaged runways. It possesses a low infrared signature and a reduced radar cross-section to help prevent detection, while low vulnerability of structure and systems aid survivability and a complement of integrated electronic countermeasures (ECM), air-to-air missiles and nose-mounted guns provide self-defense capabilities. The AMX is equipped with a hybrid flight control system; a fly-by-wire control system is employed to operate flight control surfaces such as the spoilers, rudder and variable incidence tailplane, while the ailerons and elevators are actuated via a dual-redundant hydraulic system. Brazilian and Italian aircraft differ considerably in their avionics, Italian aircraft being equipped with various NATO systems which were considered to be of negligible value by Brazil.

Variants[edit | edit source]

  • AMX-T: In 1986, development of a two-seat advanced trainer variant was undertaken. This was intended to provide trainee pilots with experience on fast jets, while still retaining the single-seater's attack capabilities. First flying in 1990, the AMX-T equipped both the Italian and Brazilian air forces.
  • AMX-ATA: The AMX Advanced Trainer Attack (AMX-ATA) is a new AMX two-seater multi-mission attack fighter developed for combat roles and advanced training. The AMX-ATA incorporates new sensors, a forward-looking infrared helmet-mounted display, a new multi-mode radar for air-to-air and air-to-surface capability, and new weapons systems including anti-ship missiles and medium-range missiles. The Venezuelan Air Force ordered eight AMX-ATA in 1999 for the advanced trainer and attack aircraft role, but the US Congress vetoed the sale because the aircraft systems include US technology.
  • AMX-R: An AMX variant designed for reconnaissance missions. Various reconnaissance pallets can be fitted; used by the Brazilian Air Force.
  • A-1M: The product of a Brazilian upgrade program of their A-1s; significant features include a Mectron SCP-01 Scipio radar, Embraer BR2 data link, FLIR Systems navigation equipment, Elbit INS/GPS/databus, the adoption of a glass cockpit, a new OBOGS system and HMD DASH IV.
  • A-11A: Italian military designation for the AMX from 2012
  • TA-11A: Italian military designation for the AMX-T from 2012.
  • A-11B: Italian military designation for the AMX ACOL from 2012.
  • TA-11B: Italian military designation for the AMX-T ACOL from 2012.

Users[edit | edit source]

  • Brazil
    • Brazilian Air Force
  • Italy
    • Aeronautica Militare

See Also[edit | edit source]