The aircraft was transferred from Pratica di Mare airport to Bracciano Lake with a special helicopter of the National Fire Corps.

Atlantic Museum Vigna di Valle
Last Italian Atlantic joins Italian Air Force Museum collection.

October 18, 2018 - The last Italian Breguet Br 1150 Atlantic anti-submarine and marine patrol aircraft (41-03), in service until last November at the 41st Wing of Sigonella, Sicily, has "landed" on the shores of Bracciano Lake, Rome, to join the collection of the Italian Air Force Museum. The transfer of the aircraft was carried out by a special Erickson S-64F helicopter of the National Fire Corps operated by the Società European Air Crane (EuAC).

The helicopter, thanks to a special harness, normally used for anti-fire and emergency activities, raised the Atlantic's fuselage from the runway at the Pratica di Mare air base, where it landed after the last mission on November 22, 2017, and transported it to the headquarters of the Historical Museum of the ItAF, Vigna di Valle, Rome, along a route previously authorized and agreed with the civilian authorities.

The Breguet Br 1150 was welcomed at Vigna di Valle by the Inspector of Naval Aviation, General of Air Brigade Carlo Moscini, who symbolically handed the keys of the Atlantic to the Museum Director, Lt. Col. Adelio Roviti. The personnel of the Air Service of the National Corps of Fire Brigade have followed all the preparatory phases of the mission to transfer the Atlantic fuselage.

"The Atlantic rightly joins the prestigious fleet of the Historical Museum of the Air Force" - said Gen. Moscini - "The operational activity carried out by the aircraft in the antisub role has been amazing: over 45 years of service totaling more than 260,000 flying hours. "The Hunter of Submarines" represented a perfect combination between operability and effectiveness and was the first inter-force weapon system: a very reliable aircraft with excellent operational capabilities, it must be part of the Museum collection."

The first Italian Atlantic arrived in Sigonella on the afternoon of June 27, 1972. The 41st Stormo began the transition to the new aircraft a few years ago: the ATR-72 in the "maritime patrol" version, called P-72A, arrived in Sigonella on November 25, 2016.

The 41st Stormo Antisom of Sigonella is an inter-operative unit of the Italian Defense. On March 28, 2007 the Unit received from the President of the Republic the Silver Medal for Civil Merit for the excellent and incessant work carried out from 1990 to 2005.

The Atlantic is an aircraft that operated with crews composed of 13 officers belonging to both the Air Force and the Navy. One of the main features of the aircraft was the ability to stay in flight for many more hours than other plane of the same type, reaching a record of 19 hours and 20 minutes without refueling. During the 45 years of activity the Italian Atlantic has operated on the waters of the Mediterranean to defend national borders, but has also participated in many international missions. It has touched prestigious soils such as the North Pole in 1997, all the major European military airports and fascinating transoceanic and global destinations such as India, Morocco, Canada, Greenland, Egypt, USA, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, etc.

The Atlantic joined the 80 aircraft already present at the Historical Museum of the Air Force: one of the largest and most interesting flight museums in the world thanks to its 13,000 square meters of covered exhibition space. It is disposed on four large exhibition pavilions and also includes a vast collection of engines and aeronautical memorabilia of various kinds related to the history of military flight in Italy and its aces.


Written by Matteo Sanzani
Source, Images: Italian Air Force

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