Iron Dome Missile Defense System Of Israel-Developed By Rafael-Kippat Barzel
Iron Dome is a mobile all weather air defense system developed by Rafael Advanced Defense systems and Israel Aerospace Industries. The system is designed to intercept and destroy short range rockets and artillery shells fired from distances from 4 km to 70 km.
The Iron Dome is an Israeli missile defense system, developed by Rafael. The program was started in 2005 and development began in 2007. The Iron Dome was designed to provide coverage for cities against enemy short-range ballistic missiles, artillery rockets and 155-mm artillery shells. This missile defense system was first deployed in 2011.
Since then it proved itself well and saved many lives. A number of countries from around the world expressed their interest in purchasing this missile defense system from Israel.
The Iron Dome is intended to intercept ballistic missiles, such as the Scud, artillery rockets and artillery shells fired from distances of 4 to 70 km.
Israeli officials estimated that effectiveness of the Iron Dome is 75 to 95%. It is claimed that it is more efficient than other missile defense systems, especially in comparison to earlier systems, such as the Patriot. Today the Iron Dome is the most tested missile shield. It has already intercepted hundreds of missiles and artillery rockets, launched by Palestinian militants. As of 2015 it totals around 1 500 successful intercepts. There were very little Israeli casualties caused due to the failures of this missile shield.
A battery of the Iron Dome consists of 3 to 4 launchers, radar, and battle management and missiles control unit. Components including the launcher and battle management shelter are based on flatracks. These are transported by heavy military trucks, fitted with palletized loading systems.
Radar is also carried on a flatbed truck and can be dismounted prior to operation. So all components can be picked-up, transported and unloaded in a different site by heavy military trucks. It seems that all components of the Iron Dome system can be used while still on the trucks. It has been reported that each battery is capable of protecting an area of approximately 150 square kilometers (approximately 12×12 km).
Missiles In Iron Dome
Each launcher of the Iron Dome is fitted with up to 20 Tamir interceptor missiles. The Tamis missile is 3 m long and weights 90 kg. It is equipped with electro-optical sensors and has steering fins. Its warhead has a proximity fuse. The launcher unit is deployed and operated remotely via a secure wireless connection.
Reload missiles are carried by another military truck, fitted with a crane.
Radar of the Iron Dome detects targets and monitors their trajectory. It is deployed and operated remotely via a secure wireless connection. This missile defense system also acquires preliminary information from other Israeli radars.
Battle management unit calculates intercept points of incoming threats and initiates missile launch. It is the only component of the Iron Dome battery, that is actually manned.
The Iron Dome can protect the cities and important targets against massive missile and rocket attacks or artillery barrages. The system can simultaneously track hundreds of incoming threats and engage them. The system has a discrimination capability. It ignores the missiles and rockets, that do not pose any threat, and fires only at those, that would have landed on populated areas.
The system can operate day and night and in adverse weather conditions.
As of 2014 price for an interception was $20 000. The price for the whole battery is $50 Million.
In 2014 Rafael unveiled a naval version of the Iron Dome, called the C-Dome. It is designed to protect vessels from missiles and saturated attacks.
It is worth noting that currently Israel develops a layered air defense system. It will include Iron Dome, Arrow 2, Arrow 3, Iron Beam and David’s Sling air defense systems.