Guided Weapon Evaluation Facility Cockpit Simulator

ZAP Missile Launch Envelope

ZAP Missile launch Envelope

FAAC Zone Acquisition Process (ZAP) software provides high-speed missile simulations capable of running much faster than real-time with limited resources. The ZAP system was initially conceived and developed in the late 1970’s as part of the Air Force MISVAL program designed to improve the missile launch envelope (MLE) information presented to F-15 and F-16 pilots. ZAP was the first program to successfully embed high-fidelity missile fly-out simulations in the on-board computer system used for determining weapon employment zone parameters in real-time. ZAP improved the inherent accuracy of the missile guidance information presented by more than 50%. In addition, ZAP enabled new guidance system information to be presented to the pilot relating to shot quality, post launch missile status, and the effects of evasive target maneuvers. ZAP was a revolutionary leap in guidance capability to the US warfighter, replacing low-fidelity coefficient driven guidance algorithms, with accurate high-speed missile simulations.

Simulation Features

The ZAP system provides high-speed missile simulations with limited use of control and guidance system resources. ZAP relies on faster-than-real-time 5-DOF embedded weapon simulations to determine trajectory parameters. The ZAP trajectory simulations match the manufacturer’s engineering 6-DOF reference simulations. This results in highly accurate missile system display information over the entire flight envelope. ZAP provides reliable shoot cue information and allows a meaningful allowable steering error to be displayed. After launch, ZAP computes the current time to impact using actual tracked target maneuvers and continually assesses the shot quality and provides indication of predicted end game success. The result of this technology is an accurate missile guidance envelope that provides a more comprehensive view of flight envelope information than a traditional missile control system. Simply put, the ZAP system provides the pilot with the best possible target and envelope information for missile guidance, improving air combat outcomes compared with a non-simulation based missile guidance system.

FAAC was formally integrated ZAP into the production F-15 Operational Flight Program.

Using a Launch Zone Interface Working Group (consisting of aircrew, weapon manufacturers, The Boeing Company, and FAAC representatives), the entire weapon employment display concept was reviewed and replaced based upon the enabling ZAP technology. ZAP now provides the information to support Air-to-Air and Air-to-Ground weapon employment displays.

ZAP Integration

  • Can be integrated with actual ZAP software used on tactical fighter jets to Re-create the weapon employment displays seen in the aircraft
  • Can be configured with F-16, F-15, and/or F/A-18 E/F displays
  • Threat WEZ: allows side-by-side comparison of ownship weapon capabilities versus selected target’s weapons for accurate assessment of first shot in a real-time dynamic environment

ZAP has been well received by the F-15 aircrew and is considered to be a tactical advantage.

ZAP Missile Launch Envelope targetFrom the initial F-15 implementation, ZAP has expanded to the F/A-18, F-16, F-16 Block 30, F-22A, and various FMS platforms. FAAC also works with Raytheon to provide the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter the ZAP equivalent software package known as the Airborne Missile Trajectory Event Modeler (AMTEM). With expansion to the various platforms, ZAP is often referred to as the Common Weapon Employment Zone (Common WEZ) software. Common WEZ goals include: Reduced costs to the taxpayer, Common weapon employment cues across platforms, and most importantly providing the warfighter with best possible information to take into combat.

  • AIM-120 (A/B/C3/C4/C5/C6/C7)
  • AIM-7 (F/M/MH)
  • AIM-9 (L/M)
  • AIM-9X (Blk I/Blk II)
  • AIM-9P
  • AIM-9S
  • AIM-9N
  • AGM-130 (A,C) GBU-15 (S,L)

Learn more about ZAP Missile Launch Envelope

FAAC’s Zone Acquisition Process (ZAP) software provides high-speed missile simulations capable of running much faster than real-time with limited resources.

or call us at 734-761-5836

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