Floating Decoy System (FDS)

IrvinGQ’s FDS3™, designed to protect naval ships from RF-seeking missile threats, including modern agile seekers

A ship-deployed, passive radio frequency, anti-missile countermeasure, designed to defeat modern anti-ship RF missile seekers


FDS3™ units are supplied as a complete decoy launch tube assembly in low-RCS launchers, typically in pairs, and may be integrated within the ship’s systems or as a standalone system, with just 8 bolts and a power feed necessary for installation.


FDS3™ anti-missile floating decoy system is capable in seduction, distraction, confusion or signature-management roles and is suited to blue-water or littoral operations. Its multi-reflector structure achieves a ship-like Radar Cross Section (RCS) that is greater than the ship.

1 decoy = protection for a ship

Mechanical Launch Mode

Should all ship’s power be lost, then FDS3™ can still be launched and provide full ship protection.

No auxiliary power is required

No targeting necessary


The decoy is completely independent of the ship’s systems, and does not require other countermeasures such as jammers to be used in conjunction with it. Once FDS3™ is launched, its operation is automatic and requires no further input from the ship.


Installation is simple, with minimal in-service maintenance requirements, resulting in extremely low through life cost of ownership.

Launch/inflation sequence

Decoy is launched when a threat is identified
Decoy inflates automatically, with rcs developed even before full inflation
Decoy floats free of the ship on the sea surface, producing a ship-like rcs
Decoy continues to function, independent of ship movements
Automatic deflation, pre-programmed to user tactics



A single FDS3 decoy, launched after the missile has locked-on to the ship, seduces the missile away from the ship.

When FDS3 is released in the final stages of a missile approach, the decoy seduces a locked-on RF-guided missile away from a target ship, producing a RCS greater than that of the ship itself. In this mode FDS3 issued for self-protection.

One or more FDS3 decoy(s), launched before missile homing radar starts, create a false target distracting missile away from the ship.

FDS3 produces an effective RCS for more than 20 minutes, which means that one or more decoys can be launched independently or together, producing a long-persistence RCS or pattern that distracts an incoming RF-guided missile away from the ship before it enters its terminal stage. In this mode FDS3 can be used for self-protection or force environment protection.

One or more FDS3 decoy(s), launched before missile targeting radar starts, create false target so missile targets decoy, not ship.

Similar in function to Distraction Mode, single or groups of FDS3 decoys can be launched before a missile is fired, to produce a false target and confuse the threat. In this mode FDS3 can be used for force environment protection.

All FDS3™ features
  • Remans effective on sea surface for as long as required. Can be launched regardless of ship or wind direction/speed, or sea state
  • Non-kinetic countermeasure – removes risk of Rules of Engagement (ROE) violation
  • Does not take space in locker – so enables more ammunition rounds to be carried
  • Once launched, fully automatic and immediate operation – RCS produced within seconds of launch
  • Standalone operation – no other countermeasures need be used in conjunction
  • Totally passive – no mutual interference with other ship systems. Cannot be jammed.
  • Capable against broad frequency, agile, multi-band threats with no knowledge of type of threat required
  • 360 degree response arc, regardless of threat bearing or azimuth
  • Bulk RCS, greater than ship’s own RCS
  • Insensitive to chaff discriminators – radar response looks like a ship
  • ‘No-power’ mode of operation – still functions with total loss of ship’s power
  • Manual launch or fully integrated into ship’s combat management system (CMS)
  • Remains effective on sea surface for as long as required. Can be launched regardless of ship or wind direction/speed or sea-state
  • Simple to install, simple to operate, low maintenance
  • Very high availability (>98 per cent availability over 10 years in-service record)

FDS3 and its earlier generations have a long in-service record with many leading navies, including the UK Royal Navy and the US Navy

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for more information regarding our naval decoy systems, get in touch with a specialist member of our team