MILITARY AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS Part 5 SYSTEM FEATURES
Military Aircraft Systems • Safety Features The safety features of air-launched weapons are designed to protect the aircraft and ground-crew, and to ensure that the weapon is armed and released only when required. Some safety features are managed by the ground-crew, some by the pilot, and some are internal to the aircraft or the weapon itself.
Military Aircraft Systems • Safety Features All new weapons are subject to rigorous testing prior to being cleared for use on an aircraft. This ensures that they are carried and released safely.
Military Aircraft Systems • Key Missile Features Seeker – Locates target and feeds this information to the Guidance Unit. Guidance Unit – Takes the target information from the Seeker and sends it to the Navigation System. Navigation System – Takes the target information from the Guidance Unit and uses it to direct the weapon to the target. Actuation System – The Actuation System controls any moveable fins that steer the weapon.
Military Aircraft Systems • Key Missile Features Armament Section – Contains the payload, fusing, safety & arming devices, and the target-detecting devices. The payload (warhead) is the explosive content. The fuse controls when the explosive detonates and can be either proximity, impact or time-delay. Propulsion System – The means by which a missile propels itself. Usually either a rocket motor or a small jet engine. And all missiles don’t become fully armed until the missile has achieved a pre-determined acceleration
Military Aircraft Systems • Key Missile Features • AIM-132 ASRAAM Seeker Guidance Unit Fuse Warhead Navigation & Actuation Units Propulsion Units
Safety Features • Rail Launchers Air-to-Air missiles are carried on Rail Launchers to provide the data and electrical connections between the aircraft and the weapon. When a missile is fired, they allow the missile to leave the aircraft safely without striking the airframe.
Safety Features • Rail Launchers There are four rail launchers in use with the RAF: LAU-7/A and BOL-304 (Tornado GR4) Integrated Tip Stub Pylon Launcher (ITSPL) (Typhoon FGR4) and Multi-Function Rail Launcher (MFRL) (Typhoon FGR4) LAU-7/A BOL-304 MFRL ITSPL
Safety Features • Safety and Arming Devices Missile safety and arming devices are electromechanical, explosive control devices designed to protect the aircraft and ground-crew, to protect a launch aircraft when it fires a missile, and to ensure that the weapon is armed and released only when required.
Safety Features • Pilot-Controlled Safety Features The pilot-controlled safety features ensure that the weapons are armed and released only when required. There are three key controls in a combat aircraft cockpit to manage weapon safety: Master Armament Safety Switch Late-Arm Switch Emergency Stores Jettison
Safety Features • Pilot-Controlled Safety Features Master Armament Safety Switch (MASS) The pilot enables the master armament switch then selects the weapon and presses the firing button. Late-Arm Switch The Late-Arm Switch needs to be selected to allow the armed weapons to be released. Emergency Stores Jettison Switch The Emergency Stores Jettison Switch allows the pilot to release all external stores in the event of an emergency.
Safety Features • Fuse Mechanisms When a GP Bomb is released from an aircraft, to ensure the releasing aircraft is not endangered by the high explosive content, the fusing mechanism is in a safe state, until the arming vane at the rear of the tail unit has made sufficient rotations to ensure a safe distance from the release aircraft.
Check of Understanding Which of the following are standard components of Air-to-Air Missiles? Guidance, Fuse, Control Surfaces, Power Supply. Power Supply, Radome, Fuse, Warhead. • Seeker, Guidance, Rocket Motor, Warhead. Seeker, Fuse, Power Supply, Tail Unit.
Check of Understanding What controls the steering of a missile towards its target? The launch aircraft pilot The missile guidance system • The launch aircraft navigator • The missile propulsion system
Check of Understanding The Armament section of an air-launched missile contains: • The payload, fusing, safety and arming devices • The arming and • target-detecting devices • The payload, fusing, safety and arming devices, and target-detecting devices The payload and fusing
Check of Understanding At what point does a launched missile become fully armed? • Just before it hits the target • When the missile has achieved • a pre-determined acceleration • When the missile has achieved • a pre-determined distance • When the missile has achieved • a pre-determined speed
Check of Understanding What protects a launch aircraft when it fires a missile? • The missile safety and arming device • The pilot arms the missile when it is • a safe distance from the aircraft • The missile warhead cannot detonate until it hits the target • An electromagnetic signal from the launch aircraft arms the missile when it is a safe distance from the aircraft
Check of Understanding When a GP Bomb is released from an aircraft, what safety feature ensures that the aircraft is not endangered by the high explosive content? The fusing mechanism has a built in sensor and only arms when 200ft from the aircraft. A GPS timer is enabled at the point of release to ensure the fusing mechanism is not armed until 300ft from the aircraft. A speed sensor activates the fusing mechanism to provide a safety distance of between 200ft and 300ft from the release aircraft. The fusing mechanism is safe until the arming vane makes sufficient rotations to ensure sufficient safety distance from the release aircraft.
Check of Understanding What causes a missile to be launched from a piloted aircraft? The pilot by pressing the firing button The pilot by selecting the weapon and then pressing the firing button The pilot enabling the master armament switch then selecting the weapon and pressing the firing button The aircraft launches missiles automatically
MILITARY AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS End of Presentation