United States and Israel Test Improved Arrow 2 Missile Interceptor
The Israel Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency conducted a test of the Arrow 2 interceptor missile on Tuesday morning, September 9. The test, which took place over the Mediterranean Sea, investigated the capabilities of the Arrow 2, the latest version of the air defense system designed to stop long-range missile threats, alongside the existing Iron Dome system.
“An Arrow 2 missile was launched and performed its flight sequence as planned. The results are being analyzed by program engineers,” the Israel Defense Ministry said in a statement.
A senior official at the Ministry of Defense stated that a Rafael-produced Sparrow missile had been fired from the Mediterranean Sea at Israel, and the system detected and successfully intercepted the missile. “At the correct time, [the system] fired an Arrow 2 interceptor,” the official said.
Israeli media reported that Ashdod residents witnessed the test operation, which simulated a rocket attack from Iran on southern Israel.
The Arrow 2 air defense system serves as the second layer of Israel’s multi-layered missile defense system.
The test results have no effect on the Israeli operational systems capability to cope with the existing threats in the region, according to the Defense Ministry. Previous tests were conducted in 2009 and 2011. Russian military radar picked up on Tuesday’s test, according to Russian news source, RT.
In January, the Israeli Defense Ministry together with the U.S. Missile Defense Agency held a successful trial of the Arrow 3 anti-ballistic missile system, which aims to intercept missiles outside the earth’s atmosphere. According to designers, the Arrow 3, which will be completed in 2016, would be able to shoot down incoming Iranian rockets over Iraq, way before they reached Israeli or Jordanian-controlled airspace.
The primary contractor for the integration and the development of the Arrow Weapon System is the Israel Aerospace Industries, in conjunction with Boeing, Elta, and Elbit-Elisra.