Tel Aviv-based Bird Aerosystems presented its AeroShield missile defence pod in its full configuration for the first time at the Paris Air Show.
Based on the Airborne Missile Protection System (AMPS) family of solutions that the company produces in co-operation with Airbus Defence and Space, the fully configured AeroShield Pod incorporates Bird Aerosystems' SPREOS directional infra-red countermeasure (DIRCM) system. This, the company says, makes it the only pod solution that supports protection by both DIRCM and flares to offer comprehensive 360 degree protection for narrow- and wide-body aircraft and VIP-type jets from the threat posed by manportable surface-to-air missiles (SAMs).
Installing AeroShield involves mounting a pylon onto the belly of the aircraft in question, onto which the self-contained pod in connected. This enables the system to be easily installed and removed as required with minimal interference with the aircraft, meaning that pods can easily be transferred between aircraft for optimal management of a fleet.
Speaking to Jane's in Paris on 19 June, Shaul Mazor, Bird Aerosystems' vice president of marketing and business development, noted that a key feature of Aeroshield is that its combination of electro-optical and radar technology provides a near-zero false alarm rate, whereas previously false alarms and unnecessary dispensing of flares had slowed the adoption of systems protecting against manportable IR-guided SAMs.
Mazor added that, because AeroShield is able to fully define the threat - determining the type of threat missile and its speed and range - the system can fine-tune its IR jamming and flare response as well as deal successfully with simultaneous attacks from multiple missiles.
Although AeroShield is focused primarily on the market for narrow- and wide-body airliners, Mazor said the technology could be tailored for use by helicopters, transport aircraft and in fact any platform apart from fast jets.
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