Indra InShield DIRCM system completes in-flight tests during NATO trial

The Indra InShield Directional Infrared Countermeasure (DIRCM) system as passed in-flight tests during the NATO Trial EMBOW XVI exercise.

These tests were performed at the WTD 91 Test Center in Meppen, Germany, with the collaboration of the Ministries of Defense of Spain, Germany, France and other allied countries.

The InShield DIRCM system was developed to protect aircraft from infrared guided surface-to-land and surface-to-air missiles (SAM).

The Spanish Directorate General of Armament and Equipment (DGAM) of the Ministry of Defense has contribute to finance the development of the system as part of its commitment to promote dual-use technologies – military and civil application -, as in the case of other similar projects on which it has worked.

The Indra system was integrated in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter of the Spanish Army Airmobile Forces (FAMET) and was certified to perform in-flight tests. Tests were coordinated with the Spanish Ministry of Defense, and were performed with the collaboration of Logistic Command of the Spanish Army (MALE) and its Acquisitions Direction and Weapons Subsystems Subdirectorate.

Upon passing NATO tests, the Indra system is qualified at operational tests, and is considered to be at TRL 8 (Technology Readiness Level 8). This is the highest level of development prior to its entry into service (TRL 9).

The company works in parallel to achieve this objective within the national SYP 21501 program for the supply of a Directional Infrared Counter Measures (DIRCM) that will be implemented in A400M military transport aircraft. Once completed, Indra will install the InShield systems in Spain’s fleet of A400M.

EMBOW exercises have taken place for over 30 years to study current technologies for counteracting attacks against aircraft with the goal of identifying the most efficient systems and making them available to allied countries.

The surface-to-air heat-seeking missiles, also known as MANPADS (Man Portable Air-Defense Systems) , are easily carried by a single person and easy to operate. Their use is a main cause of downed aircraft in conflict areas.

With the development of InShield, Indra completes the ultimate solution for protection from these types of missiles. InShield design and modular architecture enable system integration in all types of aircraft, from small airplanes or helicopters to larger platforms. The system uses the most advanced electro-optics and solid-state laser technologies.

The solution’s operating principle is based on detecting a missile during its launch phase to ultimately deviate it from its path, thanks to its laser jamming that blinds IR guidance. The process is triggered very quickly, and the InShield DIRCM system is able to respond to attacks from all types of missiles with an efficient countermeasure sequence, without requiring prior identification of the attacking missile’s type.


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