Advanced Infrared Countermeasure Munition (AIRCMM)
The Advanced Infrared Countermeasure Munition (AIRCMM) program consists of two new improved aircraft Infrared (IR) countermeasure decoys. They are designated as the XM211 and XM212 Aircraft Countermeasure Flares and will supplement the M206 Aircraft Countermeasure Flare currently utilized by Army Aircraft. The AIRCMM program is considered essential to provide Army Aircraft protection against advanced air-to-air and surface-to-air IR weapon systems. The advances and technological breakthroughs in the development of improved and smarter target acquisition systems have made it necessary to continuously develop new countermeasure systems to assure the survivability of aircraft and crews in their designated mission environment. Advanced IR threats that have decoy counter-countermeasures have been developed and fielded. These improvements in anti-aircraft systems required the development of the AIRCMM. Simple improvement of the existing M206 was considered but found to be ineffective since a new decoy configuration and chemical composition are required to attain similarity between the aircraft signature and the flare signature.
The AIRCMM can be dispensed by the existing M130 dispenser as well as the Improved Countermeasures Dispenser (ICMD) being developed for the Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasure (ATIRCM) program. The AIRCMM solution will be used on the Black Hawk, Chinook and Apache Aircraft. The AIRCMM program is managed and funded by the Project Manager, Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures/Common Missile Warning Systems (PM-ATIRCM/CMWS) located in Huntsville, AL. The U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC), Warheads, Energetic & Combat-support Armaments Center, Pyro Systems Branch is the material developer and technical advisor to the design contractor jointly with PM-ATIRCM/CMWS. Both AIRCMM and ATIRCM are improvement programs for Aircraft Survivability Equipment (ASE) systems being developed under the Suite of Integrated Infrared Countermeasures (SIIRCM) program. The AIRCMM is the countermeasure munition that will be used in the ATIRCM package. The Operational Requirements Document (ORD) for SIIRCM, dated 15 Sep 95 is utilized for the AIRCMM.
The AIRCMM program is currently in the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (E&MD) Phase. Some key accomplishments:
The AIRCMM was the only developmental design selected by OTD for the live fire tests because of its outstanding performance in the captive seeker tests as well as in computer simulations. Excellent results were obtained in the live fire.
- The program successfully completed the Critical Design Review and conducted environmental qualification tests Jan ’99 – Mar ’99.
- A new composition was developed that closely matches the aircraft signature in the missile IR tracking bands. This composition does not use magnesium as in the currently fielded countermeasure flares.
- A contractor qualification test of the final design has recently been conducted jointly with the Air Force and excellent results were obtained, with the ORD effectiveness requirements being exceeded. The AF is evaluating the AIRCMM solution for use in transport and cargo aircraft such as the C-130 and C-17.
- Participated in the OSD (Office of the Test Director, Precision Guided Weapons Countermeasures Test and Evaluation Directorate) IR Band IV Joint Test and Evaluation Program. This program consisted of captive seeker testing of fielded and developmental countermeasures in all of the services. The captive seeker tests were followed by live fire missile tests launched at a helicopter hulk mounted on a cable and QF-104 drones.
Sources and Resources
Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Saturday, January 08, 2000 5:27:19 PM