Self-funded R&D in the field of quantum cascade laser technology
Elettronica launched a new product line – a next-generation self-protection directional infrared countermeasure (DIRCM) system for naval applications, the first of its kind on the market, at Euronaval 2018.
According to company experts, there is growing interest from navies in systems capable of countering granular threats in brown waters, such as IR-guided missiles. These are increasingly cheap and easy to purchase, but sophisticated enough to provide even non-state actors with viable, cost-effective assets for threatening military vessels.
The prototype of the system has been undergoing sea trials since 2015, during which several simulations of attack from land to sea were conducted. The trials were successful in all aspects, overcoming the challenges of the maritime operational environment, in which the sun and reflections from the sea have so far frustrated attempts to provide ships with effective countermeasures. Elettronica believes that such success is due both to advanced technology and previous know-how acquired with DIRCMs for helicopters and wide-bodied aircraft.
The system is scalable and can cover either large or small vessels from multiple incoming threats. The number of installed systems needed to guarantee 360° protection depends on the size of the vessel, its IR signature, the number of threats it is expected to face and the availability of power on board.
Elettronica ‘s naval DIRCM is built exclusively with European technology, hence with a totally European supply chain. The system will be ready for procurement in the next two to three years.