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Laser-based Missile Protection System for Aircraft Approved for International Sale

Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures (ATIRCM) system shines laser light to defeat infrared missile threats. (artist rendering)
The U.S. Department of Defense approves ATIRCM for export.

BAE Systems, Inc. today announced that its Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures (ATIRCM) system has been approved for export by the U.S. Department of Defense. The export approval paves the way for sales to allied nations around the world, giving them access to this life-saving technology.

“In today’s environment with the proliferation of surface-to-air missiles, a proven aircraft survivability system to counter advanced threats meets an immediate need,” said Bill Staib, director of threat management solutions at BAE Systems. “We are seeing tremendous international interest for this system, which has proven to be both highly effective and reliable since its fielding in 2009.”

ATIRCM utilizes BAE Systems’ Common Missile Warning System (CMWS) to detect an incoming missile and communicate the missile’s position relative to the aircraft. ATIRCM then locates and tracks the incoming threat and emits a high-energy laser beam to defeat the missile’s infrared seeker, effectively blinding its guidance system and preventing it from homing in on the aircraft.

Developed in partnership with the U.S. Army and currently deployed on military helicopters, ATIRCM has proven to be highly effective in protecting both rotary and fixed wing aircraft. Deployed on mission critical U.S. Army helicopters in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2009, the latest Army report states that ATIRCM’s reliability surpasses the Army requirement several times over. This reliable performance significantly reduces the total ownership cost of the system while ensuring mission readiness.

With more than 40 years of experience in threat management, the company has fielded more than 15,000 infrared and electronic countermeasures systems worldwide. Additional information regarding the company’s threat management solutions can be found at www.baesystems.com/threat-management.

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