IDF successfully tests upgraded Iron Dome system

November 4, 2012 18:25

Israel's fifth Iron Dome battery, possessing enhanced capabilities, set to come into service protecting home front within days.

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Iron Dome battery

Iron Dome battery 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

The Defense Ministry has successfully completed an upgraded version of the Iron Dome anti-rocket shield, it announced Sunday.

The upgraded system, designed to shoot down rockets at greater ranges than those offered by the older Iron Dome batteries, was tested on Sunday.

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Defense Minister Ehud Barak described the development as “significant progress toward the completion of a multi-layered defense system,” adding that further resources will need to be invested.

Barak emphasized the US’s financial support for Israel’s aerial defense capabilities and the Iron Dome system.

A fifth Iron Dome battery, possessing the enhanced capabilities, will come into service within the air force’s Air Defense Command in the coming days.

Iron Dome is the first system of its kind in use in the world, and has intercepted over 100 rockets fired at southern Israel from Gaza in recent years.

The upgrade, carried out by the ministry’s Administration for the Development of Weapons and Technological Infrastructures, is part of a wider initiative to create a multi-layered defense system for missiles and rockets threatening the Israeli home front.

The air defenses include the Magic Wand [also known as David’s Sling] batteries, for shooting down medium-range rockets, and the Arrow 2 system, which intercepts ballistic missiles in the upper atmosphere.

The Ministry of Defense is also developing the Arrow 3, which will be capable of destroying long-range ballistic missiles in space.

Iron Dome is being jointly developed by Israeli defense companies Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Elta Group [a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries], and mPrest Systems.

The companies are working together with the Defense Ministry and the air force.

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