KC-135 Defensive Suite Validated

Testing with a Kansas Air National Guard KC-135R tanker has proven the feasibility of incorporating Northrop Grumman’s Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures system on the aircraft type for defense against small-sized anti-aircraft missiles, Air Force officials announced this week. Air Guardsmen of the 190th Air Refueling Wing hosted flight tests in late January at Forbes Field in Topeka. They worked with members of USAF’s Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB, Calif. In two flights with the modified KC-135R, this test team successfully demonstrated that LAIRCM is aerodynamically compatible with the airplane and does not impede its aerial refueling operations. Edwards spokesman Kenji Thuloweit told the Daily Report that testing with the modified tanker subsequently moved to Eglin AFB, Fla., to ascertain how well LAIRCM “picks up enemy fire.” (Edwards report by SrA. William O’Brien) (See also Forbes Field report by TSgt. Emily F. Alley)