AN/ALE-55 Fiber-Optic Towed Decoy


AN/ALE-55 Fiber-Optic Towed Decoy

The AN/ALE-55 Fiber-Optic Towed Decoy, or ALE-55, is an RF (Radio Frequency) countermeasure under development by BAE Systems for the Super Hornet.

=The System=

Defense Systems

The ALE-55 will be primarily used for jamming, specialized countermeasures, and becoming a preferred target.

Jamming

The ALE-55's first form of suppression is standard jamming procedures. The ALE-55 can detect and jam a tracking radar. The aircraft is actually detecting the radar, but the ALE-55, being a decoy, emits jamming signals to confuse the tracking radar.

Specialized Countermeasures

In the case that a radar or radar battery obtains a lock on the aircraft or decoy system, the ALE-55 analyzes the emissions and then determines the optimum jamming technique to break the radar lock. The ALE-55 also possesses the useful ability to send out multiple jamming frequencies if more than one radar is locked on to the decoy or aircraft.

Preferred Target

When a missile launch is detected, indicated by the difference in radar signal and type, the ALE-55 runs a last resort attempt to protect the aircraft towing it. This last resort is becoming the target, rather than the aircraft. It achieves this by getting between the radar emission and the aircraft, breaking the radar lock from the radar or missile threat, or by staying between the aircraft and radar source, and attempting to lure the missile away from the aircraft.


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