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The LAIRCM system is a laser-based countermeasure system that protects large fixed-wing transports and small rotary-wing aircraft from an infrared missile attack by automatically detecting a missile launch, determining if it is a threat, and activating a high-intensity countermeasure system to track and defeat the threat. LAIRCM is produced by Northrop Grumman's Defensive Systems Division in Rolling Meadows, Ill.
The test program involved more than 100 flight hours and 2,000 simulated threat engagements. C-17 flight testing was conducted at Edwards and Holloman Air Force Bases, while C-130 testing occurred at Eglin Air Force Base.
The regimen also included successful effectiveness testing at the Air Force Electronic Warfare Evaluation Simulator and live missile-firing tests at White Sands Missile Range.