The German air force’s Airbus A400M tactical transports are to be equipped with the J-Music multi-spectral directed infrared countermeasure (DIRCM) system from Elbit Systems.

Elbit has been awarded a one-year deal by prime contractor Diehl BGT Defence to provide the system, which is designed to protect large military and commercial aircraft against attacks by surface-to-air heat-seeking man portable air-defence systems. The J-Music system is planned to be integrated into a three-turret DIRCM configuration, ensuring 360° protection of the aircraft, says Diehl.

Diehl Flash

Diehl BGT Defence

"Apart from setting up a new protection system, the 15-month project named “Flash” also includes an extensive test programme," the German company adds.

Israeli developer Elbit has supplied J-Music for several aircraft types, and expects further orders following Germany’s, says chief executive Bezhalel Machlis. Its related C-Music DIRCM system was developed for the Israeli national "Sky Shield" programme to protect large commercial aircraft.

Germany is poised to take delivery of its first of a contracted 53 A400Ms, but has previously said it expects to operate only 40 of the type.