Cassidian’s identification systems to obtain AIMS certification of future Mode 5 standard


2 May 2012 – Cassidian, the defence and security division of EADS, has successfully completed all certification measurements of its MSSR 2000 I (MSSR = Monopulse Secondary Surveillance Radar) secondary radar by the AIMS Program Office of the US Department of Defence.

Concluding extensive tests and documentations since 2008, the certification guarantees the interoperability and reliable operation of MSSR 2000 I according to the future "Mode 5" standard and all other Modes (1, 2, 3/A, C, 4, S). The new "Mode 5" standardised process of distinguishing hostile from friendly aircraft (Identification-Friend-or-Foe, IFF) will be obligatory in all NATO Armed Forces from 2014. Therefore, the certification is a prerequisite for delivery of IFF equipment in the future.

“Sophisticated identification systems such as our MSSR 2000 I allow the aircraft of own or allied forces to be reliably identified, thus helping to prevent friendly fire,” explains Elmar Compans, Head of Cassidian’s Sensors & Electronic Warfare. “In this way, we make a contribution to protect individual soldiers and support them in fulfilling their mission.”

In military IFF, MSSR 2000 I works according to standardised question-and-answer procedures in order to quickly recognise friendly incoming aircraft and to alleviate the commander’s decision whether to engage the aircraft or not. Different from hitherto utilised systems, MSSR 2000 I employs highly sophisticated encryption techniques to avoid hostile signal manipulation.

The International AIMS Program Office of the US Department of Defence is the worldwide organisation certifying interoperability and technical performance of radar and IFF systems. MSSR 2000 I is the only European identification system having completed this all mode certification in accordance with AIMS 03-1000A CN3, AIMS 04-900A and AIMS 03-1201.

Secondary radars are also used in civil Air Traffic Control (ATC). In a civil ATC mission, MSSR 2000 I sends out interrogation signals to all the aircraft in its sector and collects the responses. Thus, the radar provides a real-time overview of aircraft positions and additional aircraft data which results in a significant improvement in air traffic control, the efficient use of air space and the avoidance of collisions.

Cassidian has delivered IFF systems to several NATO nations for ground and naval applications. Among others, MSSR 2000 I protects all German Navy ships as well as UK Royal Navy ships and the French Navy’s "Mistral" class command ships. In Germany, Cassidian has established the air traffic control network of the German Luftwaffe covering an airspace of 1.700km x 1.500km. In total, Cassidian has more than 350 systems in approximately 30 nations under contract, including the US.


Cassidian (

Cassidian, an EADS company, is a worldwide leader in global security solutions and systems, providing Lead Systems Integration and value-added products and services to civil and military customers around the globe: air systems (aircraft and unmanned aerial systems), land, naval and joint systems, intelligence and surveillance, cyber security, secure communications, test systems, missiles, services and support solutions. In 2011, Cassidian – with around 28 000 employees – achieved revenue of € 5.8 billion. EADS is a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2011, the group – comprising Airbus, Astrium, Cassidian and Eurocopter – generated revenue of € 49.1 billion and employed a workforce of more than 133 000.

Cassidian – Defending world security