Electronic Weapons: A True Rescue Pod

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April 12, 2014: Turkey has ordered 21 ALQ-211 AIDEWS (Advanced Integrated Defensive Electronic Warfare Suite) pods for their F-16s. So far over 200 of the American ALQ-211 pods have been sold to seven foreign customers. Most use these pods for their F-16 fighters. The ALQ-211 allows the aircraft to detect radar, electronic jamming and laser signals hitting the aircraft, as well as the presence of chemical weapons. ALQ-211 also provides some jamming of its own, and assistance on where the signal is coming from, so the pilot can move the aircraft away from the threat. ALQ-211 is also installed in helicopters, but not as a pod. Rather, the individual components are installed in the helicopter where space is available.

The ALQ-211 was developed in the 1990s and entered service just before September 11, 2001. There have been several upgrades and variants. Foreign customers do not get an ALQ-211 with the same capabilities that American aircraft receive. Components of ALQ-211 are programmable, so that the system can quickly be updated for newly discovered enemy equipment. The pod version, the ALQ-211(V)9 (version 9), costs about $3.5 million each.

 

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