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Spanish army
Ministry of Defence
Spanish army

Ejército de Tierra

Feature Articles

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Number: 76


Anti-aircraft Defence (DAA) is the group of measures designed to cancel or reduce the efficiency of hostile aircraft action. This activity is closely related to threat, that strongly influences the DAA. The same deployment can be very safe and complete before a threat, and entirely inappropriate before another one.

La defensa antiaérea del futuro

The current battlefield has dramatically changed over the past years. The possibility of deploying devices to avoid or difficulty the movement of the enemy towards an area (anti-acces and area denial systems, A2/AD) to restrict the use of aircraf means to the enemy is on the rise. This will increase even more in the future, with more countries able to deploy these A2/AD systems, with greater capabilities incorporated into them.

Thus, the contribution of DAA will materialise in anti-aircraft protection actions (integrated into the aircraft defence system), and in the support to manage or control the airspace, due to the foreseeable increase in its use in the future settings of land forces—helicopters, RPAS, Campaign Artillery, mortars, Anti-aircraft Artillery means...

The use of A2/AD systems by the enemy will prevent to guarantee air superiority. That is why it will be necessary to have high performance DAA systems to reach, at least, equality. The new land forces will also need low and very low height Anti-aircraft Defence units depending on the setting.

The new trends in the news ways of combatting and technological development mark the DAA evolution to provide the best response in the new settings.



BRIEX 2035 will have the capacity to form four anti-aircraft defence units, to support its combat groups and Brigade troops. With its means, it will contribute to the management of the airspace at the Brigade and Combat Group levels. It will be provided with weapon systems able to combat the whole spectrum of the threat, at a Combat Group level, at low and very-low height by missile dual systems (9-10 km / 6,000 m), cannon dual systems (5,000 m) and directed energy (5,000 m), electromagnetic interefence systems against RPAS, and combined cannon and missile systems.



Possible appearance of enemy forces of a certain importance practically everywhere. Reinforcement of immediate defence means in DAA units.
Physical presence of civilian population in the battlefield and ‘virtual presence’ of a potentially worldwide audience on the media and social media. Availability of non-lethal means for air threat neutralisation, especially in the operations conducted in different settings to high-intensity combat.
Increase of state and non-state actors Need to have C-RPAS means in all settings and anti-missile capacities in operations other than high-intensity combat.
Combat in urban area will be increasingly frequent. More people is expected to live in cities and the number of mega-cities is likely to increase. Intensive use of RPAS, both by the enemy and by the own forces, because of its features of high death rate, risk of collateral damage, reduced visibility, among others. In high intensity combat, it will be used together with aircrafts and helicopters.
Automatisation of many repetitive and mechanical tasks carried out by the operators thanks to robotics. Reduction of the number of squires and less need of personnel in support elements.
Automatisation of actions that nowadays require human intervention thanks to artificial intelligence. A DAA system could be able to complete the combat cycle (detection, identification, monitoring and determination) without human intervention.
Future information technologies will improve the integration of all the elements in manoeuvres. Cause ‘network fires’ and reduce the need for personnel and command and control elements.
Combat in urban areas will be increasingly frequent. More people are expected to live in towns. The number of mega-cities will increase. Intensive use of RPAS, both by the enemy and by our own forces, due to its features of higher death rate, risk of colateral damage, or reduced visibility, among others. In high intensity combat, it will be added to the use of aircrafts and helicopters.
Expansion of the capablities to analyse large volume of data. Improve acquisition capacities (including detection, identification and positioning) of DAA and Intelligence systems over enemy activities and intentions.
Nanotechnology will allow the reduction of electronic components and its level of consumption as well as the improvement in power generation and storage. Lighter, faster and more precise ammunition and missiles.
The improvement in power generation and storage. Increasing logistical autonomy of the units.