With its state-of-the-art technology, expertise and decades of experience, RUAG Aviation provides security in even the most challenging environments.

Self-protection technologies are a necessity for military and civilian missions around the world. From military operations to humanitarian actions in conflict areas, effective self-protection systems mean the difference between life and death, success and failure. With a proven reputation for reliability and efficiency, RUAG Aviation delivers self-protection solutions based on the unique know-how of its specialists, state-of-the-art technology and decades of experience supporting numerous air forces worldwide.

RUAG Aviation is a leading independent life-cycle support provider for selected aircraft and helicopters in the military and civil aviation industries. Focused on securing availability, maximising service life, and improving the capability of components, aircraft and entire fleets, the company’s core competencies include upgrade and modification solutions, as well as maintenance, repair and overhaul services, in addition to self-protection systems. Headquartered near Lucerne, Switzerland, RUAG Aviation operates facilities in various locations throughout the country, as well as in Australia, Germany, Malaysia and the US.

From assumed protection to assured safety

The readiness of self-protection systems is too critical to leave untested. Effective training, preventive testing and troubleshooting of self-protection solutions reduce systematic risk. Most existing self-protection solutions for airborne platforms traditionally contain significant inherent risk, with high handling effort and complex pyrotechnics imposing many natural restrictions on testing activities. RUAG Aviation has designed, developed and engineered a variety of solutions to resolve these issues, such as CAST-easy and Missim.

CAST-easy is a unique electronic flare simulator that enables self-protection training in a simple yet highly effective manner. Certified to RTCA/DO-160G airworthiness, this pioneering solution contains no pyrotechnics, enabling deployment in the air, on the ground and in labs, as well as on many different systems and without any geographical restrictions. It is not dispenser-specific, is compatible with standard 1×1in countermeasure cartridges, and is qualified for use even in the harshest of environmental conditions. Versatile CAST-easy is also cost-effective and easy to use. In addition to being reusable with an unlimited shelf life, it requires no maintenance; the dispensing method is clearly visible on the CAST-easy, and once dispensed it can be reset at the push of a button. Because no pyrotechnician is required for training, the low operating costs of CAST-easy are reduced even further.

RUAG Aviation is also the OEM of Missim, a three-in-one system that simulates radar, laser and guided-missile signatures, in addition to being able to test all UV-missile sensors capable of hostile fire indication (HFI). These are used to test defence equipment, providing timely go/no-go readiness reports to operators. Featuring an extensive programmed generic threat library, Missim can be effectively deployed in a broad range of threat environments without any further adjustments. Even in the field, Missim can be easily programmed via intuitive computer software to cater for more advanced or specialised simulations, using up to 255 different scenarios per emitter.

Meeting all military and environmental standards, Missim can be used from a distance of up to 20m from the self-protection systems’ sensors, thanks to its advanced automatic signal-strength-compensation technology. Combined with its extremely compact dimensions and low weight of 1.6kg, this makes Missim highly mobile and easy to deploy in demanding and fast-changing circumstances. In addition to offering the most cost-effective all-in-one testing solution on the market, Missim produces an extremely low logistical footprint – well below the average in its category.

Securing in-flight safety

Envision a reliable system that alerts helicopter crews to imminent threats while deploying effective countermeasures for ground and air-based attacks. RUAG Aviation’s Integrated Self-Protection System (ISSYS) does precisely this: it detects radar and laser threat emissions across a broad spectrum, as well as UV emissions from approaching missiles. Upon detection, it makes use of 2-16 chaff and flare dispensers to neutralise the approaching threats.

Developed by RUAG Aviation and Saab ISSYS has been adopted by several European air forces, among others. It is inherently versatile: specially designed plug-on devices (POD) are mounted on the hard points of helicopters and selected fixed-wing aircraft, enabling ISSYS to be installed within 15 minutes by just two people. This allows for easy sharing across different platforms, including those no longer compatible with fixed installations. As well as significantly reducing costs per aircraft and MRO efforts, this eliminates the need for recertification. EASA certification is possible, however, for the use of ISSYS-POD on civil or special mission helicopters, for example for protecting air ambulances.

Landing precision for UAV

Highly delicate and critical are the descriptors most commonly associated with landing a UAV. This has prompted RUAG Aviation to develop the Object Position and Tracking System (OPATS) for the Swiss Air Force – a cost-effective, laser-based automatic landing system. Using an eye-safe infrared laser, OPATS continuously measures the position of approaching UAVs, using this data to control it on its glide path. The only modification required is the installation of small optical retro-reflectors with optional heating units, fitted under its nose or wings.

OPATS has been extensively tested and has proven itself in hot and cold areas, in rain and snow, and during day and night. With the advantages of the laser augmented by its electromagnetic compatibility and resistance to jamming, this system has been reliably employed throughout the world – more than 130 OPATS have been delivered to date.

Software solutions

Flight missions don’t end on the tarmac. The safety, efficiency and effectiveness of future flights can be improved through the accurate analysis of current flight data. RUAG Aviation provides a host of advanced software to deliver complete overviews and targeted analyses in a systematic manner. These include:

  • Flight data monitoring (FDM): This improves core safety in compliance with local civil aviation regulations, using digital flight data from routine operations. This extends to operations, maintenance, training, accident prevention and risk management, and includes exceedance and trend monitoring, flight animation and detail investigation, as well as risk analysis and monitoring.
  • HUMS data-analysing system (HDAS): This increases aircraft availability by simplifying daily duties. HDAS facilitates the analysis and filing of health and usage monitoring system (HUMS) data recorded in flight, enabling relevant air traffic data to be collected centrally. The data is then processed and distributed to third-party systems, such as fatigue monitoring (FLAME) or engine condition trend monitoring (ECTM).
  • Digital video debriefing (DVD): This supplies pilots with critical feedback to enable effective, accurate and cost-effective debriefing. Tailored to pilots’ requirements, the debriefing functionality can be integrated into other tools and provide up to four video/audio streams on a split screen.
  • Obstacle management system (OMS): This enhances safety by enabling accurate overviews and effective management of obstacles and hazards. With direct linkage to civil and military aviation authorities, OMS provides an integrated workflow guiding users from initial data input and verification to final approval letters and aircrew publications.

Together ahead

"From intercepting direct threats to ensuring equipment performance and functionality, our self-protection solutions provide security even in the most challenging of environments," says Daniel Sulzer, team leader of sales and marketing at RUAG Aviation. "This increased level of safety is further enhanced by the RUAG Aviation software suites, which improve efficiency and effectiveness through clear overviews and analyses of flight data and mission conditions."

Reliable, effective and affordable, RUAG Aviation’s portfolio of self-protection and software solutions have been established through decades of experience supporting the Swiss Air Force.