image Photo: IMoD

IMoD successfully tests Arrow 3

Israel’s Ministry of Defense (IMoD) announced that it conducted a successful flight test of the Arrow Weapon System (AWS) and the Arrow 3 interceptor.

By Erin Viner

During the test, Israel’s AWS operational radars array were able to detect the target and transfer data to the battle management control (BMC), which analyzed the information to establish a defense plan, after which 2 Arrow-3 interceptors were launched toward the target and successfully completed the mission, said the IMoD.

According to a statement TV7 obtained from the IMoD Spokesperson, the flight test was led by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), and carried out at a site in center of the country yesterday with the Israeli Air Force (IAF), the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), the Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) of the Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D) at the IMoD, together with the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA).

The Arrow 3 interceptor is designed to intercept ballistic missiles outside of the earth’s atmosphere. The AWS is a central part of Israel’s multi-layered defense array that also includes the Iron Dome Defense System and David’s Sling Weapon System.

This test was part of the IDF’s multi-year development program, and the positive outcome serves as “an important milestone for Israel’s operational capability to defend itself against existing and evolving threats in the region,” said the IMoD statement.

“I commend the successful outcome of the recent flight test – Israel’s defense establishment and industries continue to develop some of the world’s most advanced systems,” said Defense Minister Benny Gantz, adding, “With every step forward, with every development, we equip the State of Israel with the capabilities to defend itself against developing threats. Our systems provide Israel with the freedom to maneuver strategically.”

The primary contractor for the development of the Arrow Weapon System and Arrow interceptors is the IAI, whose CEO Boaz Levy said that the test “proved once again that Israel holds one of the world’s most advanced defense systems against ballistic missiles. Throughout the flight test, the system was tested against ‘future threats’ in a challenging scenario, while gathering essential information that will be used by the defense establishment and the company’s engineers for the development of future technologies. The Arrow System is one of IAI’s advanced developments, including cutting-edge technologies with the capability of identifying and intercepting surrounding threats.”

IAI- subsidiary Elta, develops the radar detection array, MLM firm designs, develops and produces the Arrow interceptors and Elbit Systems-subsidiary Elisra develops the BMC.  The main subcontractors for development and production of the Arrow 3 interceptor are Boeing, Tomer and Rafael, the latter of which also designs and develops the target.

MDA Director Vice Admiral Jon Hill said that, “This test was designed to challenge every element of the Arrow Weapon System, and it performed beautifully. Data collected from this test guide future development of the AWS.” He also reaffirmed the MDA’s commitment “to assisting the Government of Israel in upgrading its missile defense capability against current and emerging threats.”

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi observed that the Israeli military and defense establishment “see great importance in constantly upgrading and improving our air defense capabilities. The test conducted this morning is another element in our ability to respond to developing threats in the region and is a part of the implementation of the IDF’s multi-year plan.”

Head of the Directorate for Defense Research and Development (DDR&D) in the Israel Ministry of Defense, Brig. Gen. (Res.) Dr. Dani Gold said that the “groundbreaking test reflects a significant leap forward in the capabilities of the defense establishment to develop in the face of emerging regional threats and to adapt for the future battlefield,” and reaffirmed his division and partnering industries “will continue spearheading Israel’s technological advance to maintain our national security.”

Echoing those statements, IMDO Director Moshe Patel underscored the ongoing mission to “enhance and to upgrade Israel’s multi-tier missile defense capabilities against emerging threats in the region” since “the successful series of tests in Alaska in 2019.”

Speaking on behalf of the Jewish State, he also expressed “appreciation to the MDA and the US Government for the enduring cooperation over a period of 30 years to build and strengthen Israel’s Missile Defense.”

Israel announced almost a year ago that it is developing the Arrow 4 ballistic missile shield with the United States, with a watchful eye on Iran.

Israel’s Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 interceptors are already operational and capable of destroying incoming missiles in the atmosphere and in space.

“The development of Arrow-4 together with our American partners will result in a technological and operational leap forward, preparing us for the future battlefield and evolving threats in the Middle East and beyond,” Defense Minister Benny Gantz said in a statement last February.