Air Weapons: May 20, 2005


The U.S. Air Force has developed a towed SAM simulator called TAPS (Towed Airborne Plume Simulator). This allows missile detection systems to be tested more thoroughly and realistically. TAPS is a 228mm diameter, 6.75 foot long cylinder that is carried under the wing of an F-16 or A-10. Once aloft, the aircraft deploys the TAPS on a 600 meter cable. TAPS emits plumes that simulate those found on anti-aircraft missiles. The shape of the TAPS also simulates the shape of a missile. The aircraft towing TAPS then flys near an aircraft carrying missile detection systems to be tested. These systems detect the plumes of oncoming missiles, as well as their shape. Before TAPS, there was no really accurate way to test the missile detectors under actual conditions. 


Article Archive

Air Weapons: Current 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close