Home Americas US Marines trial MADIS counter-drone system

US Marines trial MADIS counter-drone system

Photo: US Marine Corps

US Marines tested the Marine Air Defense Integrated System (MADIS) low-rate initial production model, hitting several launched drones during a live-fire test at the Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona.

MADIS stands as a short-range, surface-to-air system, empowering Low Altitude Air Defense Battalions to deter and neutralize unmanned aircraft systems and fixed-wing/rotary-wing aircraft.

Installed on two Joint Light Tactical Vehicles, the system functions as a complementary pair, encompassing various elements such as radar systems, surface-to-air missiles, and command and control components. Simply put, one detects, and the other engages.

In response to the persistent threat of drones, particularly due to the widespread availability of commercial off-the-shelf products, MADIS employs real-time communication and coordination to eliminate or neutralize low-altitude aerial threats, safeguarding the Marine Air Ground Task Force.

The test, conducted last month, immersed MADIS in real battlefield scenarios, assessing its capability to detect, track, identify, and neutralize unmanned aerial threats.

According to the US Marines report, in the course of the evaluation, MADIS effectively tracked and engaged multiple targets utilizing Stinger missiles and a 30mm cannon.

Operational data flowed through the Common Aviation Command and Control System to the designated “fighting pair” of vehicles, enabling engagements while simultaneously maintaining surveillance on other UAS targets.

 “We’ve taken multiple disparate commercial off-the-shelf and government off-the-shelf technologies and put them together,” said Col. Andrew Konicki, program manager for Ground Based Air Defense. “This is a capability the Marine Corps has never had, and it was a challenge for the acquisition community. This test event shows we met that challenge.”

Maj. Craig Warner, the product manager for Future Weapons Systems, mentioned that the program office has outlined additional live-fire testing for new equipment training, system verification testing, and initial operational test and evaluation in FY24, before the initiation of field deployment. The 3rd Littoral Anti-Air Battalion is slated to become the first battalion in the Marine Corps equipped with MADIS.