• The US Army’s CIRCM system, which protects aircrew and their aircraft from infrared-guided missiles, incorporates Leonardo’s latest-generation compact pointer/tracker technology;
• Leonardo has already delivered 500 pointer/tracker units to Northrop Grumman Corporation for the CIRCM programme. The new agreement, covering the CIRCM full-rate production phase, is projected to see over 1,200 additional units ordered;
• Northrop Grumman and Leonardo have worked closely together since 1995 to deliver Directed Infra-Red Countermeasures (DIRCM) systems for the US and UK Armed Forces, ensuring that aircrew come home safe.
Leonardo has signed a long-term pricing agreement with Northrop Grumman Corporation (northropgrumman.com) to provide pointer/trackers for the United States Army’s Common Infrared Countermeasures (CIRCM) programme as it enters full-rate production. The five-year agreement could see Leonardo provide more than 1,200 pointer trackers in addition to the 500 already delivered. Leonardo will deliver the pointer/trackers from its site in Edinburgh, UK, which designs and produces world-class Directed Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM) technology for the UK and its allies.
The CIRCM system is a countermeasure that will protect US Army aircrews and their aircraft from incoming missiles. It works by targeting and ‘dazzling’ the threat’s infrared (IR) guidance system with a powerful laser. Leonardo’s pointer/tracker is at the heart of the system and directs the laser accurately onto the missile’s seeker, a powerful feat of engineering considering that the aircraft and missile are some distance apart and moving quickly in multiple directions.
The agreement is the latest development in a successful long-term partnership between Northrop Grumman and Leonardo. The two companies began working together in 1995 on joint development of the AN/AAQ-24(V) Nemesis DIRCM for the US Department of Defense and UK Ministry of Defence. Leonardo developed and manufactured the pointer/tracker units for the Nemesis system. Continuing that tradition, today CIRCM employs Leonardo’s latest generation of compact pointer/tracker capability.
Leonardo has delivered more than 500 pointer/tracker units to Northrop Grumman for the CIRCM programme, which saw first deliveries to the US Army in 2016. Drawing on a strong sense of commitment and partnership, Leonardo continued to successfully deliver units at record output levels throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. Following a successful six-month initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) activity with the US Army, the CIRCM system will equip US Army platforms including the CH-47 Chinook, UH-60 Black Hawk and the AH-64 Apache.
Leonardo (leonardocompany.com), a global high-technology company, is one of the world’s major players in Aerospace, Defence and Security and Italy’s main industrial company. Organised into five business divisions, Leonardo has a significant industrial presence in Italy, the United Kingdom, Poland and the USA, where it also operates through subsidiaries such as Leonardo DRS (defence electronics), and joint ventures and partnerships: ATR, MBDA, Telespazio, Thales Alenia Space and Avio. Leonardo competes in the most important international markets by leveraging its areas of technological and product leadership (Helicopters, Aircraft, Aerostructures, Electronics, Cyber Security and Space). Listed on the Milan Stock Exchange (LDO), in 2020 Leonardo reported consolidated revenues of €13.4 billion and invested €1.6 billion in Research and Development. The company has been part of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) since 2010 and has been confirmed as an industry leader in the Aerospace & Defence sector for the second year in a row in 2020.