The Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) has commenced inflation of a High Availability Aerostat System (HAAS) and initial testing for deployment of an Elevated Sensor (ES) system in northern Israel at facilities established by the Ministry of Defense (IMoD).
By Erin Viner
The Missile Defense Organization is part of the Ministry’s Directorate of Defense R&D.
According to a statement TV7 obtained from the IMoD Spokesperson, initial inflation operations were launched in recent days, following years of development and manufacturing by the Missile Defense Organization, Israeli Air Force (IAF) and ELTA.
ELTA is a subsidiary of the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and the prime contractor for the Elevated Sensor program.
“The ES system will be a significant component in strengthening our capabilities to defend the country’s borders against a variety of threats and will enable us to build a more accurate and broader air surveillance picture,” said IAF Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin, while vowing the Air Force will use both its “defensive and offensive systems to defend the State of Israel and its sovereignty.”
The HAAS was developed and manufactured by the United States TCOM firm, which specializing in aerostat surveillance solutions. As one of the world’s largest aerostats, it features improved sensing that can detect and provide early advanced warning of potential threats.
The ES system is comprised of the HAAS and an advanced radar that was developed under a cooperative program between IMDO and the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA), enabling identification of incoming threats at long ranges when operating at high altitudes. It is the latest addition to Israel’s operational air defense detection array deployed nationwide.
“In several flight test campaigns conducted in recent months, we have demonstrated the outstanding capabilities of Israel’s multi-tier missile defense- including against cruise missiles,” said IMDO Director Moshe Patel, explaining “The IMDO and MDA, together with the IAF and defense industries are constantly improving Israel’s threat detection capabilities. This aerostat system will cruise at high altitudes and provide an exceptional, multi-directional detection capability against advanced threats.”
Thanking his firm’s “talented engineers, who worked night and day,” IAI President and CEO Boaz Levy said “This unique development” increases “the reliability of the aerial surveillance picture” as well as its “efficiency against a range of targets.”
MDA Director, Vice Admiral Jon Hill, observed that the ES “is another great example of cooperation between the Missile Defense Agency, IMDO and industry partners” and that the “co-developed technology and research is a benefit to both nations.”