The Army-led science and technology Joint Multi-Role (JMR) Demonstrator effort to design a next-generation vertical-lift aircraft by 2030 is heavily focused on leveraging advanced electronic and avionics capabilities. Sensors, electronics, avionics and cutting-edge mission and survivability equipment are a large part of the science and technology equation. The goal is to design a vertical-lift aircraft that is faster, more capable, and better equipped than today's fleet.

As part of the JMR Technology Demonstrator Phase 2, the Army has sent a Request for Information (RFI) out to industry to solicit feedback on developmental solutions and emerging technologies in the areas of Mission Systems and Aircraft Survivability Equipment.

The overall approach is aimed at fielding an integrated suite of sensors and countermeasure technologies designed to work in tandem to identify, and in some cases, deter, a wide range of potential incoming threats, from small arms fire to shoulder-fired missiles and other types of attacks.

One such example is Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM), a lightweight, high-tech laser jammer engineered to divert incoming missiles by throwing them off course. CIRCM is a lighter-weight, improved version of the Advanced Threat Infrared Countermeasures system currently deployed on aircraft.

The RFI is also looking to gather information on sensor technologies, such as next-generation options and solutions to improve upon the systems currently deployed on helicopters. The sensing and targeting technology provides helicopters thermal imaging infrared cameras as well as stabilized electro-optical sensors, laser rangefinders, and laser target designators.

The JMR aircraft will be engineered to integrate weapons and sensor systems to autonomously detect, designate, and track targets; perform targeting operations during high-speed maneuvers; conduct off-axis engagements; track multiple targets simultaneously; and optimize fire-control performance so that ballistic weapons can accommodate environmental effects such as wind and temperature.