BAE scores three Army test contracts

BAE Systems Inc. has won three Army contracts worth a total of $27 million to prepare the Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures system for the service's operational testing and evaluation in 2009.

ATIRCM is the Army's next-generation laser-based technology designed to protect aircraft against heat-seeking missiles.

Under terms of the contracts, BAE of Rockville, Md., will conduct a series of tests to enhance the system's reliability, install a multiband laser upgrade to replace the current infrared jamming subsystem and update ATIRCM software.

The upgrade will jam enemy tracking lasers on the three key threat bands, making it more reliable and effective than the infrared laser in the current ATIRCM version, BAE said.

Before the Army's own testing and evaluation, BAE will conduct a series of flight tests to check the system's performance and the company's installed Common Missile Warning System, a sensor designed for fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft that warns of hostile surface-to-air threats.

ATIRCM testing will take place over the next two years in the lab and in the air, said John Nyilis, ATIRCM program director at BAE Systems.

BAE Systems ranks No. 15 on Washington Technology's 2007 Top 100 list of the largest federal government prime contractors.

About the Author

David Hubler is the former print managing editor for GCN and senior editor for Washington Technology. He is freelance writer living in Annandale, Va.

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