The US Marines live-tested its Medium-Range Intercept Capability prototype last week at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.
The first round of tests is part of a series of live-fire events scheduled for fiscal 2022, Seapower Magazine reported. The tests will grow increasingly more challenging to gauge the system’s “proficiency and potential.”
Program manager Don Kelley described the MRIC (Medium-Range Intercept Capability) as “a missile system which detects, tracks, identifies and defeats enemy cruise missile threats and other manned and unmanned aerial threats.”
“It is planned to provide ground-based air defense for permanently fixed and operationally semi-fixed sites.”
Based on Iron Dome
The system combines key components of Rafael’s Iron Dome with the service’s AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task-Oriented Radar and Common Aviation Command and Control System (CAC2S). It “integrates a variety of data input from air-and ground-based radar to provide an accurate real-time battlefield picture.”
The service has been trying to make the Iron Dome more suitable for expeditionary operations, including “repackaging” the system onto a trailer for greater mobility. As part of the effort, the service integrated a Joint Light Tactical Vehicle with a cabin to house “the CAC2S and a mini-battle management control system for the Tamir missile.”
Janes reported that the service approved the MRIC prototype production after a successful design review in May and will decide its fate in 2022.