- A moving video of Frecce Tricolori is being shared in Italy as it battles the COVID-19 virus.
- The video features the team creating Italian flag in the sky as Pavorotti sings in the background.
- Italy is currently experiencing the largest coronavirus outbreak in Europe, with 2,158 deaths reported.
A video of Italy’s flight demonstration team, the Frecce Tricolori, has provided the virus-embattled nation a symbol of unity and strength. Italy is currently experiencing the second largest outbreak of the COVID-19 virus in the world, following only China in the number of deaths reported. The video shows the team creating the Italian national flag out of colored smoke, to the accompaniment of Luciano Pavorotti's "Nessun Dorma" from the Italian opera Turandot.
The video, according to The Aviationist aviation blog, quickly spread on Italian social media and eventually worldwide. The video shows the Frecce Tricolori, Italy’s equivalent of the Blue Angels or Thunderbirds, flying its MB339 jets while spewing the colors or il Tricolore, the Italian flag. A single MB339 flies in the opposite direction and then enters a steep climb. One interpretation of the display is that the opposing plane represents the virus, while the rest of the planes symbolize Italian unity and resolve in the face of the pandemic.
Italy, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Research Center, has reported 27,980 cases of the virus, with 2,158 deaths. Italy ordered a nationwide lockdown of the country last week, barring nonessential travel and closing businesses, shops, and sports events and ordering citizens to stay at home. The country reported 368 deaths on Sunday, March 13th alone. The viral outbreak is particularly concentrated in the northern part of the country.
The Frecce Tricolori fly 13 Aermacchi MB339 jet trainers, a modified version of the aircraft used to train student pilots. The MB339 features two seats, one for an instructor and the other for the pilot. The MB339 is powered by a Rolls-Royce Viper Mk. 632 turbojet engine and flies at top speed of 558 miles an hour. In addition to its primary training mission, it can also be armed with rockets, gun pods, and bombs and serve in the light attack role.
The team’s jets are equipped with a unique skywriting system designed to produce the colors of the Italian flag during demonstrations. As The Aviationist points out, the modified MB339s utilize a smoke generation system that injects a coloring agent into the jet's exhaust.
During the demonstration, nine of the jets fly abreast, simultaneously creating the flag as engines roar over Pavorotti's final lyric: Vincéro.
In English, it means "I will win."
Source: The Aviationist.
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