This news is classified in: Defense Helicopters Sensors
Feb 9, 2023
Northrop Grumman Corporation’s (NYSE: NOC) Common Infrared Countermeasures (CIRCM) system has achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC). With IOC, the U.S. Army demonstrated the ability to field, employ and maintain CIRCM in significant quantities on its rotary wing platforms. This milestone advances the accelerated fielding of CIRCM systems on more than 1,500 Army aircraft. CIRCM has met the IOC requirements for UH-60M, HH-60M, CH-47F and AH-64Es.
“CIRCM’s ability to track and rapidly defeat infrared-guided threats has been validated over thousands of hours of rigorous testing in laboratory, flight and live-fire test environments,” said Bob Gough, vice president, navigation, targeting and survivability, Northrop Grumman. “Achieving IOC was made possible by the entire team’s dedication and our strong partnership with the Army. Together we’ll provide U.S. Army aircrews with CIRCM’s unmatched threat protection.”
CIRCM protects against shoulder-fired and vehicle-launched anti-aircraft missiles that home in on the heat signature of an aircraft. The system helps ensure aircrew survivability, enabling the warfighter to focus on their mission.
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Due to CIRCM’s reduced weight and increased power, system installs on the existing fleet will inform future attack reconnaissance aircraft (FARA) and future long-range assault aircraft (FLRAA) requirements, making this critical life-saving technology a key enabler for Multi-Domain Operations and advancements in Army modernization.
As the next generation of laser-based infrared countermeasure systems, CIRCM’s modular, open systems approach works with existing hardware, simplifies upgrades, and keeps lifecycle costs low to provide flexibility and a solid platform to build upon in the future. Northrop Grumman continues to develop and improve CIRCM to overmatch current and future threats. One upgrade currently in test is an enhanced laser Line Replaceable Unit which will increase capability against near-peer threats.
Northrop Grumman has delivered over 250 CIRCM systems to the Army and over 100 aircraft have been equipped. CIRCM has accumulated more than 11,000 flight hours since its first field installation in December 2021.