Raytheon has deployed, for the first time, two miniature air-launched decoy (MALD) instrumented shapes from a C-130 Hercules equipped with the new Raytheon-funded MALD cargo air-launched system (MCALS).

MALD is a low-cost, modular, air-launched and programmable flight vehicle that weighs less than 300lb and has a range of 500nm.

The craft accurately duplicates the combat flight profiles and signatures of US and allied aircraft and offers counter air operations to neutralise air defence systems that pose a threat to US and allied pilots.

MCALS has a steel, birdcage-like framework body that can hold as many as eight MALDs, which are ejected at a pre-determined altitude before initiating a standard wing deployment and engine ignition sequence.

The stand-in jammer variant, MALD-J, protects aircrew and airborne systems by reducing the need for manned stand-in jamming aircraft.