26-Oct-2010 Source: Raytheon
Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) will pursue a prime contractor role in response to the U.S. Army’s Common Infrared Countermeasures (CIRCM) request for proposal. CIRCM will protect combat helicopters and other aircraft by jamming the infrared guidance systems of heat-seeking missiles and diverting the missiles away from the aircraft.
Raytheon’s CIRCM solution, known as Scorpion, will feature the company’s production-matured directed infrared countermeasures turret and a rugged quantum cascade laser. Scorpion will be a light-weight, low-cost, highly reliable laser-based infrared countermeasure solution against current and future IR-guided threat missiles.
“Raytheon’s Scorpion leverages the Department of Defense’s multibillion dollar investment in the production of air-to-air missile seekers and the commercial world’s development of quantum cascade lasers,” said Mike Booen, Raytheon’s vice president of Advanced Security and Directed Energy Systems. “By combining a light-weight, highly reliable quantum cascade laser with fiber coupling hardware, the Scorpion system provides the best solution for the Army’s CIRCM requirement.”
Scorpion has a mean time between failure rate far greater than any other system on the market. Minimizing impact on mission availability, a high MTBF rate results in less maintenance, reduced ownership costs and significantly less downtime.
“Raytheon’s Scorpion is designed with the warfighter in mind,” said Booen. “The weapon’s open system architecture makes it compatible with the majority of missile warning systems on combat aircraft platforms in operation today.”
Raytheon began developing the Scorpion solution in 2005. During range testing, the company demonstrated the pointer tracker’s ability to acquire, track and defeat IR missiles in flight with 100 percent success.
Raytheon also flew its prototype CIRCM system on a UH-1 helicopter. While flying in an operationally relevant environment, the prototype detected, tracked and applied laser energy to a simulated threat. The system met all performance requirements from a variety of distances, altitudes, airspeeds and bank angles.
Raytheon Company, with 2009 sales of $25 billion, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, homeland security and other government markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 88 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as a broad range of mission support services. With headquarters in Waltham, Mass., Raytheon employs 75,000 people worldwide.