Air Dropable Rescue and Survival System

Flanker M52-18 at Labuan airbase for Eks Paradise 2017

SHAH ALAM: Air Dropable Rescue and Survival System. In June, the Defence Ministry issued a request for tender for a multi-modal transporter (MTO) to transport two units of “Air Drop-able Rescue and Survival System (ADRSS) together with the support equipment under the procurement project of the Sukhoi Su-30MKM aircraft.

As the selection of the MTO was announced in July, we can assume that the ADRSS has already been delivered to the 11th Squadron, the operator of the Flankers, based at the Gong Kedak airbase.

Five of the six Flankers taking part in Eks Paradise 2017 at the dispersal site at Labuan airbase.

However as the MTO tender does not identify the make of the ADRSS we have to rely on a Google search to find which systems are available out there.

Bomb pylons for Russian ordnance on a Flanker

Based on the Google search, I think the ADRSS is the Lighweight SKAD manufactured by American-company, Airborne Systems. The LW SKAD is designed to be attached to an aircraft on a pylon via a Nato standard attachment. The company says it had been cleared for use on F-16 and F/A-18 as well as Fokker 27 and 50 maritime patrollers.

Flanker M52-18 at Labuan airbase for Eks Paradise 2017

There are two versions of the LW SKAD, one each for marine and land applications. The text below is for the marine SKAD.

Designed to reliably and accurately deploy two inflatable life rafts and survival gear into the water. The LW SKAD system is released from the aircraft by the pilot upwind of the survivors. A parachute system is initiated and the first life raft package is extracted from the
LW SKAD container. A buoyant rope is deployed and feeds out between the first and second life raft package (which is still in the container). Once the container impacts the water, the second life raft is expelled and inflated. Both life rafts are designed to inflate automatically upon water immersion. The inflated life rafts, which are still connected by the buoyant rope, drift towards the survivors in the water. The survivors will then be able to reach either one of the life rafts or the buoyant rope and utilize the survival equipment contained within the inflated life raft. Automatic deployment of life raft sea anchors and strobe lights enhance stability and visibility in poor weather conditions

Lighweight SKAD

The same company also make the Heavyweight SKAD designed to be deployed from the bomb bay of a P-3C Orion. Other companies also make similar system which can be deploy from the rear or side doors of various transport and patrol planes as well as helicopters.

Deployment of a heavyweight SKAD from an Orion.

However as the LW SKAD is likely to be deployed from a Flanker instead of another plane, it may well be the ADRSS that had been selected. I stand to be corrected of course.

— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 2227 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. Curious, why would the MKM carry the Air Drop-able Rescue and Survival System? I thought the ejector seat comes with dinghy attached. Are we going to deploy the MKM for SAR?

    Most likely a buddy system

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