Northrop Grumman said its Guardian Counter-Man Portable Air Defense System (C-MANPADS), which is installed on nine wide-body aircraft flying in commercial revenue service, achieved 12,000 on-aircraft operational hours. The company began Phase III of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) C-MANPADS program in August 2006. The program is scheduled to conclude in March 2008. The Northrop Grumman-led team completed all contract production and hardware delivery requirements and is in flight testing. As of Oct. 12, the Guardian system amassed more than 2,500 revenue service flights, logging more than 12,000 hours of on-aircraft operating time. The Guardian system is a defensive aid using military technology to defend against the threat that anti-aircraft, shoulder-fired missiles poses to commercial aviation. Once launched, the missile is detected by the system, which then directs a non-visible, eye-safe laser to the seeker of the incoming missile, disrupting its guidance signals.