AN/ALE-36 & QRC-490 (Counter measure solution to older jets?)

Good day everyone,

I want to bring a potential solution that may turn a lot of jets without viable countermeasures into jets with counter measures. Unfortunately this system is hardly mentioned online. However I hope this can bring more eyes on the subject.

I’d like to present the AN/ALE-36 (American) and the QRC-490 (Israel?) both of these designs are related to each other, and can convert mine dispensing pods to carry chaff… The AN/ALE-37 pods found on the AV-8A and A-6E TRAM are designed to be mass chaff pods, however are setup to dispense chaff the same way the integrated dispensers on western aircraft are setup and thus can deploy flares as well. I believe the AN/ALE-36/QRC-490 are setup in this same way.

AN/ALE-37: Figure 10-23.AN/ALE-37A countermeasures chaff dispensing set

The AN/ALE-36 is a conversion system for the SUU-38 mine dispenser, or the SUU-41 mine dispenser into a counter measure pod.

The SUU-38 was designed to deliver either the CBU-34 or CBU-42 cluster mines, the SUU-41 delivered the CBU-39 or CBU-40 cluster mines.

Both of these pods deliver mines outside of these rectangular compartments (Mine shape example):

Photographed here is the QRC-490 installed in what appears to be a SUU-41 pod, on a TER onboard an F-4:

These compartments make me believe that while its primary purpose was to delivery chaff, it may like the AN/ALE-37 pods be able to deliver flares as well, as these appear to be the same shape as CM dispensers on other craft.

Photographed is the SUU-41 as the original mine dispenser:

The SUU-38:

Empty the SUU-38 weighs 176 lbs, and loaded with mines 824 lbs

The SUU-41:

Empty the SUU-41 is 230 lbs, loaded with mines its 690 lbs.

More info on cluster munitions:

A wide variety of aircraft could carry these pods, including the F-100 and F-105. Obviously more information is needed, but the ALE-36 is the most hopeful chance at getting these older 2nd generation jets counter measures. Hopefully someone may have additional pictures and information.

What is everyones thoughts on this? I’m hoping this isn’t a dead end, and can indeed only physically dispense chaff. I’ll be able to compile a list of aircraft compatible with these dispenser units soon.

SUU-38 on an F-100D(I):


This sounds like a good idea, I have been saying how aircraft 8.0 B.R. and above because even by themself have a 20% chance of being in a game with missiles. Now this gives me further reason on why they should have flares. The planes will have the flying effects of having this extra equipment on so, don’t worry. Make it one of the last upgrades you can unlock for the plane as well.

Good idea, but isn’t the main issue these aircraft have is a lack of flares? Lack of chaff is less of an issue.


I think he’s trying to make the case that they could mount flares and as a result, be a viable option for Gen 2 jets to have a CM load 9.0 and up - I think.

As @AlfiestheName mentioned; its possible that these were compatible with flares. I don’t want to make an absolute confirmation, but the AN/ALE-37 was also called a Chaff dispenser despite also being able to load counter measure flares. The shape of the conversion does appear to accommodate flares. Unfortunately there is hardly any official mention of the AN/ALE-36 on the internet.

Compare this image of a QRC-490 conversion:


Vs. this Netherlands F-16 chaff/flare dispenser:


They do appear to be of similar setup. So my hope is, that this can not only accommodate chaff, but flares as well.

I mean sure similar but it still doesn’t look like an AN/ALE-40 (the F-16 you posted). Unless the flares insanely large.

I’m pretty sure that has more to do with how the pod functions, rather than the types of countermeasure than can theoretically be loaded into it.

See, the ALE-36, 37, and 38/41 are described as bulk chaff dispensers, intended specifically for continuous dispensing of chaff. With the AN/ALE-38/41, it has no fine control outside of on/off; once on, it continues to dispense chaff at a constant rate until empty or switched off. The AN/ALE-37 functions in much the same way, but with additional controls for dispenser timing (rather than a fully functional CMDS, like it incorrectly is in WT).

So chances are that the AN/ALE-36 functions in a similar way to both of those, being little more than a system that starts to dispense chaff once turned on.

I’ve said it before, any jet that can see missiles other then the aim-9B/E should be getting some CMs even if it isn’t historical.

They already pick and choose when do things for historical reasons and when they do it for balance.

Why not give some older jets a chance?

While these are good for old jets, in my opinion what needs to happen instead is that the jets with the high powered, hard to dodge missiles (like the R-60 or AIM-9J) need to be moved up.
Generally this would mean decompression of battle ratings to something like 15.0 but that’s just a pipe dream.

Probably like BOZ pods, this kind of solution would need the ability to control flares and chaff seperately. Even if these were compatible with Flares. It might be a case they would be 1 or the other and never both. Which could be tricky to have in game currently