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Activity title

DIRCM Concepts and Performances

Activity Reference

SCI-302

Panel

Systems Concepts and Integration

Security Classification

Other

Status

Active

Activity type

RTG

Start date

2017

End date

2020

Keywords

Digital simulations, DIRCM, Electro-optics, EOCM, HWIL facilities, Jamming, Laser, MANPADS, Missile

Background

Infrared and electro-optically (EO/IR) guided missiles continue to increase in complexity, capability and diversity, and pose an increasing threat to aircrafts. This threat diversity leads to the design of complex countermeasure sequences generally based on mixed flare combination. As an alternative solution, more and more aircraft are using laser-based DIRCM systems for their protection. This proposed new group activity follows up the work performed in the framework of SCI-237 panel about DIRCM State of the Art and assessment recommendation. After the elaboration of a common NATO Staff Requirement for DIRCM and the test methodologies definition needed for testing/qualifying DIRCM equipment, the group expressed a common interest to further assess and optimize the operational performance of these DIRCM systems in terms of jamming effectiveness. The group will have strong synergies and complementarities with the NAFAG/ACG3/SG2/Infrared Technical Team (IRTT). Whereas the IRTT is globally testing DIRCM equipment on ground or in flight at system level, the purpose of this new SCI group is to thoroughly assess and optimize the effectiveness of various laser jamming techniques in order to improve technical recommendation about platform survivability equipped with DIRCM. The work will be focused on jamming code parameters and associated optical break lock effects. That means the problem must be studied with a global approach from missile flight to jamming code as well as energy collected by seeker and navigation issues during jamming. In accordance with the STO Collaborative Network Operating Procedures (Appendix 3 to Annex IIA), before the end of its second meeting, this task group will agree upon a Minimum Effort Criteria. This Minimum Effort Criteria will identify and measure the minimum contribution of the nations in the area covered by the Technical Team. Members not providing that “minimum effort” will be invited to leave the Technical Team. The member nations have a common interest in DIRCM equipment for the protection of their national aircrafts (either already installed or in the near future). Co-operation will be beneficial to all parties; past experience has already shown that collaboration in this area is both productive and cost-effective.

Objectives

The objectives for this group are to investigate the relationship of jamming results between laboratory tests and (simulated) missile firing scenarios. With this relationship it is expected to gain knowledge to better predict the (low cost) lab results with respect to the more expensive flight trials or complex missile fly-out simulators. Also a wider range of missile guidance techniques will be investigated with respect to jamming code susceptibility to broaden the list of threats a DIRCM system may be effective against. Thirdly, Closed Loop functionalities of a DIRCM system are not operational yet, however it is assumed by the group members that for future DIRCM systems this functionality may be beneficial to increase the overall DIRCM performance. A study into this subject may lead to a better understanding of the pros and cons of this concept.

Topics

As described earlier the group activity will generally address the effectiveness of laser jamming techniques for the IR/EO protection of aircrafts against the IR/EO guided missile threat. In addition, to the effectiveness analysis, the group will also define a set of effectiveness technical criteria measurable in the lab (Hardware in the loop) and/or in the field. This work will use the various expertise tools available among the group members (Hardware in the loop facilities, digital simulations, laboratory of ground facilities, etc).

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