Israel reveals major upgrade to Iron Dome

Defense authorities report 100% success rate in first series of trials testing system's newly developed capabilities in a host of scenarios simulating future threats system will face during confrontation

Yoav Zitun|
The Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) of the Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D) announced on Sunday it has conducted a series of successful trials in southern Israel designed to test a new upgrade to the Iron Dome missile defense system.
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  • The IMDO, which oversees the development and production of multi-layered active defense initiatives against high-trajectory rocket and missile threats, had revealed this significant advancement in Israel's defensive capabilities less than a week after the Defense Ministry unveiled a new revolutionary laser-based air defense system and a decade after Iron Dome's first successful operational testing.
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    The Iron Dome missile defense system
    (Photo: Ministry of Defense)
    However, the Defense Ministry's statement didn't disclose any details about the nature of the upgrade.
    "This successful series of trials constitutes an important milestone in the State of Israel's operational defensive capabilities against existing and future threats," read the statement. "These trials tested the system's newly developed capacities in a host of scenarios simulating future threats that the system will face during a confrontation."
    Since Iron Dome's first interception over the southern city of Ashkelon in April 2011, more than 2,400 successful interceptions have been recorded, with an average success rate of 85%, mainly in southern Israel, but also in the north.
    IMDO Director Moshe Patel said that the newly developed system, when delivered to the IDF, will enable the Air Force to deal with the foreseen threats in the region much better.
    Head of the Missile Defense Systems Directorate in Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Pini Yungman also praised the upgraded system, citing it as a major improvement to Israel's defensive capabilities.
    "We finished the trials with a 100% success rate. The system intercepted all the threats launched during the experiment. The State of Israel is more protected now."
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