The first live-fire tests of ‘C-Dome’ interceptions from aboard the Navy’s Sa’ar 6 corvettes has been conducted.
By Erin Viner
The ‘C-Dome’ onboard missile defense system system is an advanced naval configuration of Israel’s Iron Dome Weapon System (IDDS).
According to a statement TV7 obtained from the Israel Ministry of Defense (IMoD) yesterday, the “test campaign consisted of a number of scenarios simulating advanced threats, including rockets, cruise missiles and UAVs”- all of which “the ‘C-Dome’ is capable of successfully intercepting.”
The first series of live-fire tests against the multiple advanced threats was successfully completed by the Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) of the Directorate for Defense R&D at the IMoD, the IDF and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, aboard the Israeli Naval Ship (INS) Sa’ar 6 Magen corvette, whose crew members led the drill.
The exercise marks “an important milestone and demonstrates the operational capability of the Israeli Navy to defend the strategic assets and vital interests of the State of Israel against current and evolving threats,” said the IMoD statement.
Development of ‘C-Dome’ was led by the IMDO. It is based on the Iron Dome defense system developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, with the command-and-control system developed by mPrest; and interfaces with the Sa’ar 6’s ‘Adir’ radar, developed by Israel Aerospace Industry‘s (IAI) ELTA division.
The newest advanced system comes amid heightening tensions with Iran, which is thought to be finalizing an agreement with world powers in Vienna to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action under terms Jerusalem has deemed unacceptable.
The ‘C-Dome’ is the latest addition to Israel’s multi-tier missile defense array, which includes the Arrow and David’s Sling systems.
“I commend the DDR&D, IDF and Rafael for the completion of an unprecedented test,” said Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, adding that “The systems that we are developing as part of Israel’s multi-tier missile defense array enable us to operate against Iranian proxies in the region and defend against their weapon systems, which are constantly being upgraded. We continue to be two steps ahead of them and we will continue developing and upgrading our capabilities in order to maintain security superiority in the region and to defend the citizens and assets of the State of Israel.”
Head of the IMoD Directorate for Defense R&D Brig. Gen. (Res.) Dr. Danny Gold said that “the success of this test constitutes a significant technological breakthrough in the field of missile defense and is the result of the Directorate’s vision and cooperation with the IDF and Israeli defense industries.”
IMDO Director Moshe Patel called the offshore testis of the missile defense system aboard a naval vessel “another historic milestone for the Iron Dome defense system” that was able to successfully intercept incoming threats “with surgical precision.”
“The success of today’s tests further strengthens our confidence in our missile defense systems as well as the ability of the Israeli Navy to defend the maritime assets of the State of Israel,” stated the IMDO chief.
Rafael Executive Vice President Dr. Ran Gozali, Head of Land and Naval Directorate said that the tests signal “the end of a process to develop and adapt the Iron Dome to naval platforms, according to the requirements outlined by the DDR&D and the IDF,” in a demonstration of his company’s “advanced engineering and development capabilities, as well as the capability to successfully integrate complex systems.”
Later on Monday, Israeli President Isaac Herzog toured a secret Rafael production facility in the north, accompanied by Rafael CEO Maj. Gen. (Res.) Yoav Har-Even, Rafael Chairman Dr. Uzi Landau, members of the company’s senior management and employees involved in manufacturing and development.
President Herzog was shown a special display of defense systems, including models of Iron Dome, David’s Sling, SPIKE anti-tank missiles, directed-energy weapons, Trophy and other protection systems, said a statement from his office.
During the visit, the Israeli leader was presented with a photograph of his late father Chaim Herzog, the Sixth President of Israel, who visited Rafael’s production lines in 1985. He also pointed out his late mother Aura, who recently passed away, was a physicist and one of the founders of the nation’s Science Corps, which later “evolved into Rafael.”
At the end of the visit, President Herzog met employees at Rafael’s R&D division, which employs thousands of engineers in a wide range of fields.
“I am leaving with an almost indescribable sense of security. When one sees what is manufactured here, with the amazing brains of thousands of men and women, and the rare sense of mission and purpose that has existed here from the outset, one can rest assured that we have people to rely on. What you are creating here is a core component of our nation’s security,” said the Israeli President, underscoring that, “The Iron Dome system, in its various forms, represents a significant strategic capacity for the State of Israel, and now with the successful test at sea, the influence of Israel’s strategic assets is also expanding to the naval domain.”