The US Army, together with industry partner Northrop Grumman, celebrates as its Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM) system achieves Milestone C.
Having undergone rigorous testing to guarantee system readiness, the CIRCM system has been given the official approval of the Department of Defense ‘Milestone Decision Authority’. This final milestone marks an end to the lengthy development and testing phase, and the beginning of the countermeasure’s production and deployment.
For the uninitiated, CIRCM is a lightweight system that employs laser technology to defend against advanced infrared missiles. Crucially, the US military has specified a modular open system architecture meaning that the countermeasure can be iterated and improved upon as new threats emerge.
Achieving Milestone C is no small feat however. Contractor Northrop Grumman has worked extensively with the US Army to thoroughly put the countermeasure through its paces. The system has endured thousands of hours of laboratory, flight and free flight missile testing to demonstrate its ability to protect aircrews across a wide variety of realistic combat scenarios.
“With the achievement of Milestone C, we have collectively taken an important step toward getting this critical, life-saving technology to the warfighter,” said Bob Gough, Vice President of Land and Avionics at Northrop Grumman’s C4ISR Division. “The CIRCM capability is mature, reliable and has proven to be mission-effective.”
To date, Northrop Grumman has installed similar infrared countermeasure systems on board over 1,500 aircraft, across more than 80 different kinds of aircraft – including large and small fixed-wing, rotary wing and tilt-rotor platforms.
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