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Singapore Airshow: Decoy measures

IAI showcases new towed decoy

Among the towed decoy products being showcased at this year’s Singapore Air Show, held in the city between 6th and 9th February, is Israel Aerospace Industries’ EL/L-8270 Radio Frequency (RF) towed decoy. The product joins Rafael Advanced Defence System’s X-Guard RF towed decoy which is indicating a mini-renaissance in this countermeasures type as an aircraft self-protection system. The EL/L-8270 is designed to equip large aircraft such as freighters or business jets and to provide a self-contained RF jamming system intended to protect the aircraft against Active/Semi-Active Radar Homing Surface-to-Air/Air-to-Air Missiles (SAMs/AAMs).

Although IAI officials speaking to MONS did not provide details of the waveband that the EL/L-8270 covers, it is reasonable to assume that it encompass an array of X-band (8.5 gigahertz/GHz to 10.68GHz) and millimetre wave frequencies in the 13.4GHz to 36GHz range which comprises a wide array of RF seeker heads and radars used by S/ARH SAMs and AAMs. As the RF decoy unit is, for all intents and purposes, completely self-contained, the system requires few inputs from the aircrew to function, safe for reeling out and in the decoy, which has a battery life of up to eight hours. As with many RF decoy systems, the EL/L-8270 is designed to provide a more seductive target using RF waveforms and propagation techniques than the radar cross section presented by the radar itself. It is believed that the decoy maybe in service onboard a Boeing B-737 turbofan transport configured for dignitary transport in Africa.

Thomas Withington

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