Australian Government: Department of Defence
Defence Capability Plan 2009 - Public Version

AIR 5416

Phase 4B2 C-130J Large Aircraft Infra-red Countermeasures (LAIRCM)

Phase Scope

Phase 4B2 is intended to provide additional Electronic Warfare Self Protection (EWSP) for the C-130J aircraft consisting of infrared counter-measure systems.


AIR 5416 (ECHIDNA) is a multi-phase project dealing with improving EWSP across a number of aircraft. Phase 4 was to acquire EWSP for C-130J aircraft. It is structured as follows:

  • Phase 4A (approved in 2005) was brought forward from the original Phase 4 and provided a missile warning and flare dispensing capability for the C-130J.
  • Phase 4B1 (approved) is to acquire a radar warning receiver (RWR) for the C-130J.
  • Phase 4B2 plans to acquire a laser-based infrared countermeasure system for the C-130J.

Australian Industry Opportunities


This phase relies heavily on the provision of Military-off-the-Shelf (MOTS) EWSP systems through US Foreign Military Sales (FMS).

The installation of the laser based infrared countermeasures systems may be carried out under FMS arrangements or under commercial arrangements with support from Australian industry.

Through‑life Support

Due to the US centred FMS nature of the proposed procurements, Australian industry involvement in system support is expected to be limited.

Industry Capabilities and Activities

Capabilities and related activities that may provide opportunities for Australian industry in this phase includes:

Activity Electronic Warfare Rotary & Fixed Wing Aircraft
Assemble / Install   D
Repair and Maintain D  
Test and Evaluate D D
Acquisition Category (ACAT)
ACAT Attribute Complexity Level Assessment
Acquisition Cost Level 3 Moderate $100m-$500m (Towards the lower end of the band)
Project Management Complexity Level 2 High
Schedule Level 2 High
Technical Difficulty Level 2 High
Operation and Support Level 3 Moderate
Commercial Level 3 Moderate

The ACAT Level assessed for this Phase is ACAT II.

Planned Schedule Highlights

First Pass Approval

FY 2009-10 to FY 2010-11


FY 2011-12 to FY 2012-13

Initial Operating Capability

2012 to 2014

Points of Contact

Capability Staff:

Deputy Director Aircraft Survivability
(02) 6265 5734

Defence Materiel Organisation:

Director Airborne Self Protection Systems Program Office
(02) 6265 1615

Defence Capability Plan / 2009 / Public Version