Following recent assessments on the significant rocket threat posed by Hezbollah to the Israeli home front, the Defense Ministry said Wednesday that it carried out a successful test of the US-Israel developed David’s Sling anti-missile system, which is designed to shoot down shortto medium-range missiles.
During the trial, carried out this week in central Israel by the Defense Ministry and the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency, David’s Sling radar identified an unarmed Sparrow missile heading into its air space, and fired an interceptor that struck and destroyed the target.
The system’s principal contractor is Israel’s Rafael Advanced Systems, which develops it together with the American Raytheon defense company.
“This is a successful project, and we believe it will be operational next year,” Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon told the visiting speaker of the US House of Representatives, John Boehner.
The Defense Ministry said David’s Sling MMR radar, developed by Elta, an Israel Aerospace Industries subsidiary, detected the missile on time, and that its command and control system, developed by Elbit subsidiary Elisra, fired the interceptor on time.
“This system, which will be part of a multi-layered defense system, will in the near future work with existing components to defend Israel against the threat of missiles, and deal more efficiently with threats,” the ministry added.
David’s Sling can shoot down hostile aircraft and cruise missiles.
It is designed to deal with the challenge of guided rockets and missiles, which Iran is manufacturing and smuggling to Hezbollah in growing numbers, according to Israeli security assessments. It can also act as a back-up to the Arrow 2 anti-ballistic missile defense system, creating more opportunities to shoot down threats.
When fully deployed, David’s Sling will require just two batteries to cover Israel. The system will be able to destroy threats beyond the country’s borders, according to officials from Rafael.