Northrop's Common Infrared Countermeasures system makes the grade

A laser system from Northrop Grumman for use on aircraft to defeat infrared missiles has successfully completed six-weeks of government testing.
By Richard J. Tomkins  |  Aug. 29, 2014 at 3:43 PM
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ROLLING MEADOWS, Ill., Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Northrop Grumman's laser-based counter-measure system for defense against IR missiles has successfully completed a new round of government-designed testing.

Over a six-week period at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Ala., the Common Infrared Countermeasures system was integrated aboard a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter and used in scenarios that included turns, banks, gunfire and flares.

"With each opportunity to prove its effectiveness, our CIRCM system has performed well," said Jeffrey Q. Palombo, vice president and general manager, Northrop Grumman, Land and Self Protection Systems Division. "This flight test performance correlated extremely well with the results of our lab testing demonstration to show the maturity of our algorithms and software, which is something that many new programs can struggle with.

"Drawing upon more than 1 million hours of laser-based directional infrared counter-measure system operation in theatre, plus 1,000 hours of instrumented CIRCM tests, allowed us to successfully handle the complex scenarios encountered during the flight testing phase of this program."

The CIRCM allows a counter-measures laser to be targeted directly at an incoming heat seeking missile. It uses an open architecture and can be integrated into legacy and emerging missile warning systems. It is used on for rotary wing, tilt-rotor and small fixed-wing aircraft.

Northrop is developing the system in partnership with Selex ES and Daylight Solutions.

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