US Marines Advance Mobile ‘Iron Dome’ Defense System Development

The US Marine Corps (USMC) has approved the next stage of development of a mobile defense system that is partly based on Israel’s famous “Iron Dome.”

The announcement came after officials from the service’s Milestone Decision Authority held a meeting last month for the Medium-Range Intercept Capability (MRIC) program.

The project will reportedly proceed to the certification process and assessment to attest the system’s components and characteristics, according to a report by Breaking Defense.

“A series of activities will take place during fiscal 2023, culminating with a quick reaction assessment… for the MRIC prototype under the Middle Tier Acquisition Rapid Prototyping framework,” USMC Program Executive Officer Barbara Hamby told the outlet.

Once the certification and assessment are complete, the Milestone Decision Authority will make a decision regarding the potential fielding of the MRIC prototype.

Israel’s Iron Dome

Israel’s sophisticated Iron Dome is an air defense system designed to destroy short-range rockets, artillery shells, and mortars fired from a maximum distance of 45 miles (72 kilometers).

It is a three-piece system that includes a radar to track enemy rockets, an advanced software to predict the rockets’ trajectory, and a Tamir interceptor missile to blow the projectiles into harmless pieces.

Operational since 2011, the system was developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries with the support of the US.

It is credited for intercepting about 90 percent of the rockets fired by Hamas and other Palestinian militant groups.

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