Rafael is demonstrating a new concept of Multi-level Integrated Command, Control and Communications Air Defense (MIC4AD) at the Paris Airshow 2011. “With this system we go beyond the weapon system, introducing a system of systems that manages, optimizes and controls networked, air defense capabilities” Yossi Horowitz, RAFAEL air defense business development executive told Defense-Update. Unlike current solutions that interface existing air defense assets within the air forces’ operational air picture, leaving the actual management and target allocations to the individual units of the AD corps, MIC4AD enables much deeper integration, facilitating ‘coexistence’ of air defense weapon systems within crowded and active air space. “The contemporary approach could be sufficient for existing anti-aircraft defenses, but becomes obsolete in the missile defense world, where response time is much shorter and engagement ranges far longer.” Horowitz explains. “Operating in an airspace crowded with activity, manned and unmanned requires the use of automated coordination systems to manage intercept trajectories to avoid fratricide” Horowitz added.
Designed to coordinate and manage aerial picture shared by different air defense systems, from the command level down to regional sectors and battalions MIC4AD integrates multiple layers of situational picture, from civil air traffic, manned and unmanned military air operations, low level traffic (helicopters, UAVs etc), air defense (providing tracks of enemy activity), hostile and friendly missile trajectories (both ballistic missiles and missile interceptors). By fusing these pictures into a comprehensive situational understanding, MIC4AD allows missile defense assets to operate in an open airspace, ‘coexisting’ with civil and military activity. To avoid such conflicts current air defense systems are operating in protected airspaces, where air traffic is limited. MIC4AD can be used to enhance regional threat evaluation and optimize weapon allocation maximizing defensive capability. “Every nation that want to deploy air defense assets in areas open for civil or military air traffic will need such systems.” said Horowitz.