US Army Conducts Maiden Live-Fire Test of Iron Dome

The US Army recently test-fired one of two Iron Dome Defense System-Army (IDDS-A) batteries acquired in the last two years.

According to a statement by the Program Executive Office Missiles and Space, soldiers from the 3-43 Air Defense Artillery Battalion “engaged eight cruise missile surrogate targets as part of a coordinated performance test and live-fire event.”

To Protect Soldiers Stationed Abroad

The US signed an estimated $373 million contract with Israel in August 2019 for the procurement of two IDDS-A batteries. The US Army received the first system in November 2020, and the second in January 2021.

Yedioth Ahronoth revealed that the US bought the systems to protect their soldiers stationed abroad in hostile territories.

The Israeli news outlet added that the contract included 12 launchers, two radars, two combat management systems, and 240 interceptor missiles.

Iron Dome

Rafael Defense System’s Iron Dome is a mobile all-weather system designed to intercept short-range rockets and artillery shells fired from four kilometers (2.5 miles) to 70 kilometers (43 miles) away. Its multi-mission radar was developed by ELTA, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries. The command and control system was developed by mPrest. The system also features Raytheon’s Tamir interceptor missile.

The system is an integral part of Israel’s multi-layered defense shield, which includes David’s Sling, Arrow-2, and Arrow-3 weapons systems.

The US Army plans to deploy the systems as an interim cruise missile defense solution, “while continuing to acquire an enduring Indirect Fire Protection Capability (IFPC) Increment 2 (Inc2) system,” the statement read.

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