CCDC Aviation & Missile Center


FLC Region

Security Lab



Building 5400, Room B315
Redstone Arsenal, AL 35898-5000
United States

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The U. S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC) Aviation & Missile Center, is the Army's focal point for providing research, development, and engineering technology and services for aviation and missile platforms across the lifecycle.

CCDC Aviation & Missile Center is a world-class facility with approximately 2,500 employees, including more than 1,900 scientists and engineers who provide technical services and conduct scientific research and development in disciplines that support CCDC Aviation & Missile Center customer platforms and weapons systems.

CCDC Aviation & Missile Center has a history spanning over 50 years of excellence in aviation and missilery. From the rockets that gave birth to America's space program, to today's cutting edge use of UAVs in the Global War on Terror, CCDC Aviation & Missile Center leads the way in the development of new technologies that continue to defend America and our troops. As a result of Base Realignment and Closure, the Missile RDEC and the Aviation RDEC were combined in 1997. This presented unique organizational challenges but also created opportunities to share technologies across the two mission areas. Today, the CCDC Aviation & Missile Center directorates all provide support to both.


CCDC Aviation & Missile Center performs the following missions:
  • Plan, manage and conduct research and development of guided missiles and free flight rockets.
  • Provide life cycle system and production engineering and execute management of computer resources embedded in battlefield support of CCDC Aviation & Missile Center Project Managers and other Army Materiel Command (AMC) or Department of Defense (DoD) elements.
  • Provide the necessary simulation to support exploratory, advanced and engineering development programs.
  • Provide processing (ADP) activities to support the CCDC Aviation & Missile Center missions.
  • Develop concepts and maintain long-range plans for weapon system acquisition and the supporting research and development.
  • Conduct experimental demonstrations and develop proposed weapon systems through the proof of principal phases.
  • Act as the CCDC Aviation & Missile Center interface with the Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) to determine weapon system requirements and to maintain cognizance of current and future threats.
  • Serve as AMC lead laboratory in high power/energy laser research and technology.
  • Perform selective research and component development to generate new technology, reduce missile development lead time, and improve system reliability.
  • Perform feasibility and design studies and prepares proposals for future weapon systems.
  • Design, develop and fabricate prototype missile systems components.
  • Ensure the transfer of technology from system to system and from current to future systems.
  • Act as the Army focal point for exchange and synthesization of mission and high- energy laser technology with DoD, NASA and foreign governments.
  • Plan, develop and manage the CCDC Aviation & Missile Center test and evaluation automated database.
  • Operate the Army Inertial Guidance Management and Technology Center and the Army Rocket Propulsion Technology and Management Center.
  • Serve as the lead laboratory for Guidance and Control-Terminal Homing and High Energy Lasers.

Technology Disciplines


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Displaying 1 - 10 of 85
14 x 22 Foot Subsonic Wind Tunnel
7 x 10 Foot Wind Tunnel
Advanced Prototyping Engineering & Experimentation (APEX) Laboratories I, II & III
Advanced Simulation Center
Aerial Targets Laboratory
Aero-Optic Evaluation Center (AOEC), Large Energy National Shock (LENS) Tunnels I & II
Aerophysics Research Center
Air Defense Radar Operations Facility
Airborne & Field Sensors Facilities
Anechoic Radio Frequency Test Chamber



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The Advanced Affordable Turbine Engine (AATE) program is a 3000 horsepower engine demonstrator program to provide advanced propulsion capability for future Army rotorcraft platforms. Specifically, AATE focused on developing a new, advanced turboshaft engine to support modernization requirements to ensure the Apache and Black Hawk remain operationally effective well into the future.


AMRDEC’s Aviation Development Directorate (ADD) led the Science and Technology (S&T) effort to develop a new centerline engine, focused on three objectives:

  • Significant reduction in specific fuel consumption (SFC).
  • Significant improvement in shaft horsepower to weight ratio (Hp/wt).
  • Significant reduction in Life Cycle Cost (LCC).

Development and Capabilities

The AATE program included two competing demonstrator engine approaches; one award with General Electric and one award with the Advanced Turbine Engine Company (ATEC), a joint venture of Honeywell and Pratt & Whitney engine companies. The AATE program culminated in 2014 by completing originally planned full engine system demonstrations including performance, durability, and sand tests for the two competing architectures. These system demonstrations along with many related component level demonstrations and associated design code validations significantly mitigate the risk of transitioning the advanced turboshaft engine technology to a planned program of record, known as Improved Turbine Engine Program (ITEP). The ITEP, managed by PEO Aviation, has completed its analysis of alternatives (AoA) phase and is positioned to enter into a technology maturation phase of development.

Additional Features

The AATE configuration was designed to fit into both the Black Hawk and Apache installation envelopes. The engine provides 50% higher power at the same weight as the current fielded engine. Significant effort was expended to ensure robust operation in austere environments to include the use of advanced inlet particle separation technologies, erosion resistant coatings, and ruggedized blading.

The improved fuel efficiency, reliability and maintainability characteristics, and the drive for lower engine production and maintenance costs with the new engine approach addresses the need for reduced Aviation O&S costs. The AATE technology enables improved range & payload capability and increased hot / high operational capability for Apache & Black Hawk platforms and is applicable to other service, current rotorcraft fleets as well as Future Vertical Lift (FVL) rotorcraft.

The Containerized Weapon System (CWS) was developed to provide a scalable, stand-alone force protection capability with enhanced lethality for FOBs, COPs, ECPs, airfields, embassies, naval assets, and other high value locations. Remote operations allow unit commanders to provide critical overwatch capabilities from a secure and protected position. By integrating currently fielded weapon systems, the CWS provides a reduced logistics footprint. This system is actively deployed in multiple areas of operation.

System Description

An electric mast remotely deploys the CROWS weapons platform with an integrated Javelin missile to provide a full 360 degree capability. A Situational Awareness (SA) computer provides a networked hub linking the CWS to existing ISR assets for rapid, automated target cueing. Digital terrain maps provide additional SA and target location information to the operator.

Key Features

The CWS is fully self-contained within a standard ISO Tricon shipping container that is readily transported with common material handling equipment.

  • Two soldiers can deploy the system in less than 30 minutes
  • Full remote operations from up to 1000m
  • Rapid reload and redeployment from under armor
  • Fully integrated power management system for extended remote operations
  • solar, battery, generator, NATO, and shore power

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center is collaborating with Auburn University and the Federal Aviation Administration to develop innovative aviation learning and training modules using virtual, interactive and multimedia technology. Rapid prototyping of gaming technology tools will ensure that the computer-generated training environments are user-friendly and customizable. 

On June 6, AMRDEC Acting Director Jeff Langhout signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with Auburn University. AMRDEC's Software Engineering Directorate, Army Game Studio will partner with Auburn University to develop gaming modules that can be implemented into the FAA's current curriculum for air traffic controllers.

The project is through the FAA's Air Transportation Center of Excellence for Technical Training and Human Performance. The FAA's Center of Excellence program is a long-term, cost-sharing partnership between academia, industry and government. The FAA works with center members and affiliates to conduct research in airspace and airport planning and design, environment and aviation safety. 

The team will develop air traffic controller training technology using research and science-based knowledge on training adult learners and the use of gaming to improve learning and retention. The modules will demonstrate team capabilities to provide realistic, engaging and effective training.

The Army Game Studio has established unmatched capabilities in the development of virtual, interactive and multimedia technology used for outreach, recruiting, education and training. The studio brings together artists, Soldiers and gaming experts to create virtual environments for Soldiers to train in without putting them at risk in combat. AGS manages the development and deployment of the Official Video Game of the U.S. Army, America's Army, and the GoArmy Edge Sports Applications. 

"The Army Game Studio is my go-to place for any training, animation, augmented learning or virtual environment that I need," said JoEllen Sefton, director of Auburn University's Warrior Research Center and associate professor in the School of Kinesiology.

"I know that the talented team there can take anything we develop, or anything I can imagine, and make it real."

The Warrior Research Center is led by Auburn's School of Kinesiology in the College of Education and includes research from engineering, industrial design, psychology, business, veterinary medicine and human sciences. Studies also include Auburn's ROTC program, MRI Research Center, Center for Disability Research and Service Assistive Technology and Innovation Gastrointestinal Research Center, as well as the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine on Auburn's campus.

"This CRADA provides the opportunity for AMRDEC's Army Games Studio to use game-based and virtual reality technologies to enhance Army aviation training and readiness," said Frank Blackwell, program manager, Army Game Studio. "We believe Auburn University will be a strong partner."

"This is the first CRADA that AMRDEC has entered into with Auburn and we are excited about the research opportunities that will result from this partnership," said Kelly McGuire, chief of the Science and Technology Support Division. 


U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities for decisive overmatch to the Army against the complexities of the current and future operating environments in support of the Joint Warfighter and the Nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.

AMRDEC brought together a team of more than 150 subject matter experts from across the AMRDEC enterprise with representatives from five directorates and more than 20 functional areas to design, manufacture, procure, assemble, and test the U.S. Army’s newest Air Defense launcher. TheMML Product Team leveraged more than 85 industry partners to assist in design and manufacturing. 

This is the first development of a major acquisition program by the government in more than 30 years.

The MML program is part of the Indirect Fire Protection Capability Increment 2-Intercept U.S. Army program. IFPC Inc 2-I system is a mobile ground-based weapon system designed to defeat unmanned aircraft systems, cruise missiles, and rockets, artillery, and mortars. In addition to the MML, the IFPC Inc 2-I System will use the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System as the command and control unit, Sentinel radar system, and existing interceptors to provide 360-degree protection with the ability to engage simultaneous threats arriving from different azimuths. 

The MML is mounted on a medium tactical truck. The launcher can rotate 360 degrees and elevate from 0-90 degrees. It consists of fifteen tubes, each of which can hold either a single large interceptor or multiple smaller interceptors. Developed using an open systems architecture, the launcher will interface to the IBCS Engagement Operations Center via radio. The truck will also pull a trailer that has a missile data link to communicate to interceptors in-flight, and an Army standard 60 kW generator to power the system while emplaced.

In 2012, the IFPC Inc 2-I Product Office came to the AMRDEC to conduct an engineering feasibility study to support an Analysis of Alternatives excursion for a Multi-Role, Common Launcher. A white paper published in April 2012 concluded that such a launcher was feasible from an engineering standpoint. The launcher groundwork continued with conduct of a deeper dive into key performance goals and performance trade studies leading to a Conceptual Design in October 2012. The Conceptual Design leveraged the M1157 Dump Truck, an existing member of the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles, and a M1095 five-ton trailer. The FMTV frame reinforcements, cradle and azimuth geared bearing were leveraged from the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System along with significant hardware and software architecture experience from AMRDEC engineers.


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