By Frank Savage, The Chicago Times
February 10, 2023
ROLLING MEADOWS, IL – Northrop Grumman Corporation announced that its Common Infrared Countermeasures (CIRCM) system has achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC) which the U.S. Army has demonstrated the ability to field, employ, and maintain CIRCM in significant quantities on its rotary wing platforms.
Northrop Grumman believes this milestone advances the accelerated fielding of CIRCM systems on more than 1,500 Army aircraft including UH-60M, HH-60M, CH-47F, and AH-64Es. After thousands of hours of rigorous testing in laboratory, flight, and live-fire tests, the U.S. Army has approved early fielding of the Northrop Grumman-built CIRCM system.
“CIRCM’s ability to track and rapidly defeat infrared-guided threats has been validated over thousands of hours of rigorous testing in laboratory, flight and live-fire test environments. Achieving IOC was made possible by the entire team’s dedication and our strong partnership with the Army. Together we’ll provide U.S. Army aircrews with CIRCM’s unmatched threat protection.” said Bob Gough, vice president, navigation, targeting and survivability, Northrop Grumman.
Northrop Grumman’s CIRCM protects against shoulder-fired and vehicle-launched anti-aircraft missiles that home in on the heat signature of an aircraft. The system is designed to help ensure aircrew survivability to focus on the mission.
CIRCM’s reduced weight and increased power will inform future attack reconnaissance aircraft and future long-range assault aircraft requirements, making this a vital life-saving technology and a key enabler for Multi-Domain Operations and advancements in Army modernization.
CIRCM’s modular open systems approach works with existing hardware, simplifies upgrades, and keeps lifecycle costs low to provide flexibility and a solid platform to build upon in the future. Northrop Grumman will continue to develop and improve CIRCM to overmatch current and future threats. One upgrade in testing is an enhanced laser Line Replaceable Unit which will increase capability against near-peer threats.
Currently, Northrop Grumman has delivered over 250 CIRCM systems to the Army and over 100 aircraft have been equipped.