Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI)
Parent System: EL/L-8273
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 2005
Total Production: ?
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Description: The EL/L-8273 is a suite comprising a Missile Approach Warning System (MAWS) and several countermeasures, including Directional Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM), capable of protecting commercial aircraft from missile threats. This warning/protection system has been developed by IAI's Elta Systems in conjunction with IAI's Tamam Division - Tamam was responsible for the infrared sensor development along with Elta.
EL/L-8273 is based on a modular architecture with the system divided into three main subsystems/layers. The first layer comprises a passive Infrared Search and Track (IRST) sensor capable of detecting incoming missiles at any time. The second layer is radar sensor providing target confirmation within a short time. The third layer is triggered by MAWS radar target confirmation and comprises various countermeasures charged with defeating the incoming threat.
The government of Israel selected the EL/L-8273 system to protect its commercial passenger aircraft of potential shoot downs utilizing surface-to-air missiles. This decision was made after assessing that El/L-8273 approach ensures low rate of false alarms during take off and landing operations thanks to the threat confirmation by a radar system. Relying only on electro-optical sensors for threat detection is associated with a high rate of false alarms.
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