Northrop Grumman’s laser directional infrared countermeasure (DIRCM) system has successfully thwarted simulated heat-seeking missile attacks on an AH-64D Apache helicopter. The series of 31 tests took place at Vliehors Test Range in Netherlands on a Dutch aircraft.The system is self-contained in a pod and thus removable. It automatically detects a missile launch.
Joint Electronics Type Designation System
The U.S. Marine Corps has chosen Northrop Grumman’s directional infrared countermeasures (DIRCM) system for its CH-53E helicopters in a $19.7 million deal. It will be the first application of the company’s two-color infrared missile warning sensor system coupled with its mini-pointer/tracker assembly, forming a DIRCM suite to protect the CH-53Es from threat missiles.
The advent of the active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar has not only dramatically improved the traditional capabilities of the radar, but has also opened the door to a new world of capabilities.
As the U.S. equips its fighter aircraft with active electronically scanned array (aesa) radars, Europe’s avionics industry is working hard to put similar technology into its three “Euro-canard” fighters–the Gripen, Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon. This effort was highlighted last month by the first flight of a Typhoon with an AESA radar installed.
The slightly worn helicopter searchlight at the Vectorbeam Technologies booth (No. 4101) illustrates not wear and tear from normal operations but the punishment that the unit went through during RTCA DO-160E testing, including lightning tests.
“In today’s combat environment, the name of the game in dropping air-to-ground munitions is how to double the distance from the target from which we can drop the weapon itself–the release range–but still not experience any decrease in accuracy,” said Lockheed Martin’s John Schoeppner. “We have achieved this level of performance with our AN/AAQ-33 Sniper targeting pod, but what we feel further differentiates us from our competitors is our pod’
Over 20 years ago the Moscow-based Scientific Research Institute of Instrument Building (NIIP) made military aviation history with the production of the Mikoyan MiG-31’s N007 Zaslon radar. Zaslon was a technological marvel in its day, being the first airborne fighter radar fitted with an electronically scanning array (ESA).
With its ASQ-228 ATFLIR (advanced targeting forward-looking infrared pod) in full-rate production for the U.S. Navy, and in daily use over Iraq, Raytheon is building upon the pod’s outstanding long-range performance to expand its repertoire, both in operational roles and capabilities.
The Lockheed Martin F-16 Block 60 operated by the United Arab Emirates air force could be described as military aviation’s version of a “missing link.” Its on-board systems are the most advanced of any F-16 ever built, so much so that it bridges the gap between the futuristic capabilities of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and the previous F-16C/D Block 50 series.
In past decades better and more accurate weapons served as the generally accepted solution to increasing the effectiveness of an attack aircraft. More recently electro-optical (EO) targeting systems have made those weapons all the more lethal.