F16 Jan Kjær, Flyvevåbnets Fototjeneste; Royal Danish Air Force

Countermeasures systems

Countermeasures Dispenser System for all types of military aircraft.

Advanced Countermeasures Dispenser System

The Terma Advanced Countermeasures Dispenser System (ACMDS) has been designed to coordinate, integrate, and operate expendable countermeasures payloads on fixed-wing fighter, transport, and large-body aircraft as well as helicopters.


The ACMDS dispenser suite is typically controlled via the AN/ALQ-213 EW Management Unit (EWMU) or Defensive Aids Controller (DAC), which provides a reprogramming interface, automatic decision support for the pilot in a threat environment, built-in training capability, and full EW suite control, if desired.

The next generation ACMDS system, which was introduced in 2017, supports many new world leading capabilities:

  • Smart Stores Communication Interface (SSCI) – introduction of the coming NATO STANAG 4781 smart stores interface, enables in-flight communication and optimal use of smarts expendables (e.g. Expendable Active Decoy, Hardkill and multi-shot cartridges). The SSCI also ensures automatic expendable type recognition and automatically logs payload logistic information, including air carriage life and use-by-date.
  • Improved Mixed Payload Capability – the systems enables a fully user programmable mixed payload capability, which is supported by intuitive programming tools and visual indication on the cockpit displays.
  • Additional Safety Features – additional hardware-controlled safety functions to support Weight-On-Wheels (WoW), payload load-out restrictions (e.g. chaff or flare only), installation dependent dispense interval limitations to protect aircraft structure, and configurable discrete dispense inhibits per magazine.
  • Third Magazine Support – the Digital Sequencer Switch (DSS) is now available in a new variant, which supports 3 magazines. This enables cost effective solutions for many pylon and pod installations.
  • Preplanned Improvements – the ACMDS is prepared for support of 5th gen aircraft through preplanned improvements via an expansion board supporting Ethernet interface and door controls.

The ACMDS components consist of a series of autonomous line-replaceable units that include

  • Digital Sequencer Switch 
  • Safety Switch
  • Dispenser Assemblies
  • Dispenser Magazines
  • Retainer Plates.

In addition to the standard Air Force dispenser assemblies, as illustrated below, the ACMDS components have been integrated in applied aerostructures as both scab-on, pylon-mounted, and podded solutions. Examples include:

  • F-16 Pylon Integrated Dispenser System (PIDS)
  • Modular Aircraft Survivability Equipment (MASE)
  • Modular Countermeasures Pod (MCP).

All integrates both ACMDS and a missile warning system.

The Terma Advanced Countermeasures Dispenser System (ACMDS)


The Terma Advanced Countermeasures Dispenser System (ACMDS) provides a number of benefits compared to other solutions on the market:

  • Non-ITAR solution
  • Form-fit compatible with legacy Terma and third-party dispenser systems
  • Fully in-country organic reprogrammable
  • Smart Stores Communication Interface (SSCI) for support of both multi-shot cartridges and expendable active decoys (EAD) 
  • Mixed payload capability
  • Simultaneous dispense of multiple payloads
  • Platform adaptable, hardware-controlled safety features
  • Configurable back-up mode, allowing smart dispensing without ACMDS controller
  • Programmable firing characteristics, supporting smart and multi-shot payloads
  • Synchronous and asynchronous dispense patterns
  • Field reprogrammable by end user.


The ACMDS system has been installed on +2,500 aircraft worldwide, counting more than +25 different platforms.

The non-ITAR ACMDS system has been combat proven through operational service for more than 25 years with a demonstrated mean time between failure value of >18,000 hours.

The ACMDS includes mixed payload capability within a magazine as well as a Flare-Up modification of the F-16 PIDS pylon, allowing dispensing of pyrophoric flares from pylons on stations 3 and/or 7.

The ACMDS suite includes a full suite of both ground support equipment by means of Dispenser Test Adapters, Payload Simulator & Stray Voltage Tester, and Dispense Program Analyzer as well as a Windows PC based EW Mission Support Tool (EWMST) application for field/in-country organic mission data generation and post-flight analysis.

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