European security research – Joint Emergency Response Exercise 2007

Posted: 28 March 2008 | Not known | No comments yet

Four years ago the European Commission set up an initiative to increase security for European citizens. It started with a Preparatory Action for Security Research (PASR), with E45 million of research funding over a three year period. This was driven by the Directorate General of Enterprise. In addition to this, the 6th Framework Program continued to cover detailed topics on parts of the security chain, with the 7th Framework Program starting in 2007. This included E1.4 billion of funding for mission oriented security research over 7 years. Meanwhile the Directorate General for Justice, Law and Security set up the European Program for Critical Infrastructure Protection (EPCIP), with a further E180 million.

Four years ago the European Commission set up an initiative to increase security for European citizens. It started with a Preparatory Action for Security Research (PASR), with E45 million of research funding over a three year period. This was driven by the Directorate General of Enterprise. In addition to this, the 6th Framework Program continued to cover detailed topics on parts of the security chain, with the 7th Framework Program starting in 2007. This included E1.4 billion of funding for mission oriented security research over 7 years. Meanwhile the Directorate General for Justice, Law and Security set up the European Program for Critical Infrastructure Protection (EPCIP), with a further E180 million.

Diehl BGT Defence, together with 20 partners from 9 nations, proposed and led the PASR project PATIN. The project covers the protection of air transportation and critical infrastructure, and aims to build a community with special knowledge concerning the security of air transportation. The focus is on new technologies, processes and security solutions, to be used in the future, to ensure the free mobility of European citizens.

On 24 October 2007, Munich and Prague Airports carried out a comprehensive exercise called JERE ‘07. The aim was to practise a ‘Renegade’ case, i.e. an aircraft hijack case. This exercise was run as part of the European-funded PATIN security programme.

In the framework of JERE ’07 a user conference and an exhibition was organised, where the project PATIN, attendant PATIN exercises and other EU supported air transport security related projects were presented .

Joint Emergency Response Exercise

At 12:10pm on the day of the exercise, the passengers of flight 4R 1001 from Munich to “Neopolis” were startled by the sentence: “Heads down, all heads down immediately! Or do you all want to die?”

The emergency drill on board a Hamburg International Airlines B737 aircraft had started.

Aims of the drill

The aim of the drill was to test the alarm procedures, communications and coordination of the military and civil drill participants. The following activities were to be checked in detail:

  • Are the civil alarm plans up-to-date?
  • Are the civil and military emergency organisations coordinated and compatible?
  • Are the military emergency procedures suitable for use in case of a plane hijacking?
  • Are passenger liaison and support services on the ground prepared and suitable? Particularly for traumatised passengers and other people involved.
  • Are the “first speaker procedures” of air traffic control a suitable measure to coordinate for a certain period of time?
  • Are the procedures of rescue, fire, police and airport organisations suitable to ensure safe emergency handling on site?

Drill procedure

From 9:30am the passengers were handled in the high risk terminal with current security technology (stats of security procedures). At 11:52am the aircraft took off, heading for “Neopolis.” Shortly after take-off, 4 “terrorists” took over the plane.

After crossing the German / Czech border, two Saab-Gripen fighter aircraft from the Czech air force commenced take-off after the alarm was raised. After the air traffic control activities (first speaker procedure), as well as respective message transmissions, the aircraft was handed over to Czech air traffic control and air defence. The interceptors accompanied the aircraft through Czech airspace into Prague where, at 1:01pm, the aircraft landed.

Czech security agencies secured the hijacked aircraft and commenced negotiations with the terrorists.

After violent attacks by the terrorists on passengers and aircraft crew, a renewed take-off, with an unknown destination, was enforced at approximately 3:00pm. After further terrorist activities on board, ‘brave passengers’ overpowered the terrorists.

The B3 alarm (aircraft hijacking at Munich Airport) was then changed to a C2 alarm (casualties on board).

The approach and landing at Munich Airport, at 3:30pm, commenced without problems. The aircraft was then parked in a specially designated area in the north-west of the airport. Following this, a fast evacuation of the passengers via emergency slides took place, with the assistance of the Freising and Erding external fire and rescue services and the airport, federal and state police.


The existing infrastructure and resource-intensive control procedures, for preventing unauthorised persons and vehicles from accessing the ‘sensitive’ zone of the airport grounds, are only suitable for countering terror attacks to a very limited extent.

  • The extremely time-consuming and cost-intensive security procedures for access control must be simplified and sped up significantly. Persons carrying arms or explosives must be prevented from entering the airport or similar infrastructure in future. The potential damage on the ground is every bit as serious as on board an aircraft. Electronic scanning methods before access control for vehicles and also before security checks on persons seem to be a practicable way here of simplifying and speeding up controls.
  • Simpler and reliable control methods must be found urgently, to enable passengers to carry liquids within their hand luggage once more. The development and deployment of new ‘terahertz’ technologies seems promising here.
  • The military forces, in particular the radar, air defence and air force units, must develop new strategies and terms of reference for ‘repelling unlawful intrusion in civil aviation’. Electronic data communication systems from the ground, via the military aircraft (interceptor) to the control system of the civil aircraft, may provide a remedy here.
  • Pragmatic cooperation and support by national and international authorities must be greatly improved. The common effort to restrict or prevent air terrorism must commence before entry to the airport. Grouping the decision-makers and the capture, networking and exchange of data by the various command and crisis centres (civil and military), appears promising in this regard.

JERE ’07 provided an outstanding opportunity to evaluate and give some answers to these issues in a realistic and real time scenario.


Representatives of the following public authorities took part in the exercise:

  • Munich International Airport
  • Prague International Airport
  • German and Czech ATC
  • German Ministry of the Interior (Federal Police)
  • German Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Affairs
  • Bavarian State Ministry of the Interior (State Police)
  • District Administrator’s Offices of Erding / Freising
  • NATO CEP (Civil Emergency Planning)
  • Various Czech authorities (Czech Air Defence, Prague City Council)

European Security Research – PATIN Exercise, Security Exhibition and Seminar
During the course of the emergency exercise, a security fair and conference took place in a terminal building, courtesy of Munich Airport. The exhibition displayed security technologies from the PATIN partners and a number of other parties engaged in security related themes.

During the conference, the following project results were presented:

  • EU supported PASR project PALMA (Protection of Airliners against MANPADS Attacks)
  • SAFEE (Security of Aircraft in the Future European Environment)
  • CASAM (Civil Aircraft Security Against MANPADS).


The remit of the PATIN project was to design a system-of-system, for the protection of the complete air transportation system against terrorist, CBRE (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Explosives) and other attacks. This included; the protection of aircraft, ground infrastructure and information networks.

PATIN analysed all potentially relevant threats and the technologies to counter them. It derived from these a set of viable future operational concepts.

The project aimed to create a layered protection mechanism, which forms a system-of-system interconnected through networks. A top level information network provides situational awareness, for the whole of the European air transportation system. Local networks aimed to detect anomalies at airports, followed by reactive and proactive measures against co-ordinated terrorist attacks.

Major deliverables, will be the basis for developing the roadmaps required to establish a platform for the future European Security Research Programme.

The project started in July 2006, with fact finding research concerning security in the present air transportation system, analysis of the terroristic threat and the associated risks, and a review of existing risk assessment methodologies. The selection of a methodology, which is suited to the air transportation security problem, was also discussed.

The result was

  • a complete description of security measures presently used in air transport under consideration of the relevant ICAO, ECAC recommendations and EU regulations
  • selection of a security assessment methodology

In the next step, a thorough analysis of possible threats and associated risks was carried out. A complete list and descriptions of technologies, which can be used for protecting information infrastructure, airports, airfields and aircraft against terror attacks, was elaborated.

PATIN has been divided into four study areas that cover the major aspects of the protection of air transport operations.

Protection of information infrastructure

This concept considers the protection of information infrastructure and all assets which are connected thereto. Several protection concepts of different levels have been proposed:

  • level 1: physical security of buildings, sites and the surroundings of the airport area
  • level 2: protection of the information infrastructure hardware in the airport region
  • level 3: data and information protection concepts
  • level 4: airport surveillance

These information infrastructure concepts are not competing, but complementing each other and protecting against different threats. So a most promising modular, generic, scalable, multi-level information infrastructure protection and security concept can be formed. This consists of; a variable amount of adaptable components of each protection level, depending on the existing infrastructure of each airport and meets different demands, missions and technologies.

Protection of airport terminal buildings

This concept is concerned with; the protection of airport terminal facilities, the staff, cargo and the passengers, both land and air side, and their hold and carry-on baggage.

It has developed new ideas for:

  • access control and monitoring of people in the terminal;
  • CBRN sensors and processing, particularly the integrated processing of all information from screening sensors, to maximise the intelligence to be gained
  • explosives sensors and processing.

Protection of aircraft while on the ground

This concept is for the protection of aircraft while they are on the airport surface, either parked at a gate, on a dispersal area, or while they are taxiing. The protection principle is to use sensors to define a protected area around an aircraft, or any valuable or sensitive infrastructure, and then to manage access to that area and detect intruders. The use of sensors to detect missile or mortar attacks on parked or taxiing aircraft has also been considered.

Protection of aircraft during flight

The concept is to protect aircraft against missile attacks or other unlawful interference. The use of radar, UV and IR sensors has been proposed, together with decoy and IR counter measures, for systems to be deployed in short-term and medium-term. We have also looked at an area protection system, using high power microwaves or high energy lasers.

In addition, PATIN has considered an integration concept that includes; how these concepts may be integrated into an overall warning system for security staff at airports, and an information system that is accessible by decision makers from national emergency response organisations.

PATIN exercises

The exhibition and conference included demonstrations of future technologies and corresponding exercises. This comprised of:

  • Passivation of a Misused Aircraft
  • The goal of the exercise was to demonstrate how existing technologies could be used to detect a hijack case and to passivate the aircraft.
  • Netcentric Information Exchange
  • This was achived by using DLRs Cockpit, Radar and ATC simulators and SAABs Gripen simulator, networked by the secure European Regional Renegade Information Dissemination System (ERRIDS) demonstrator, developed by EUROCONTROL and 42 Solutions.
  • Security Exercise for the Protection of Aircraft on the Ground
  • BATS and SELEX demonstrated a number of state of the art technologies and integrated systems, which can currently be deployed to protect an airfield from intruders. It was demonstrated that a number of integrated systems provide better tracking performance and can be used to reduce false alarms.

A demonstration of the integrated system was successfully performed a number of times during the exhibition at Munich Airport.

  • Aircraft protection exercise/ simulation
  • The aircraft protection exercise/simulation, led by SAAB, aims to demonstrate how the PATIN derived protection concepts defeat the terrorist MANPADS threat, in a dynamic situation, with a focus on protection effectiveness. The scenario includes the near simultaneous launch of three MANPADS from two different locations outside Munich airport.

The protection elements used in the exercise include; Chemring’s pyrophoric IR decoys – in order to obtain a safe and effective decoying of the threat – and dual missile detection arrays, operating in different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, to substantially reduce the number of false alarms.

Aircraft of two different sizes are addressed. Real measured IR signature data, for aircraft and protection concept elements, is applied to a synthetic computer model. The model has been validated in an actual flight trial, with instrumented missile seekers on the ground.

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