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March 19, 2019 4:52 pm

Israel’s David’s Sling Missile Defense System Said to Successfully Complete Series of Tests

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

A David’s Sling system test in December 2015. Photo: United States Missile Defense Agency.

Israel’s David’s Sling missile defense system, jointly developed with the US, was said to successfully complete a series of tests on Tuesday.

According to the Hebrew news site Mako, the tests assessed the capabilities of the latest version of the defense system, and simulated a number of scenarios that it could face in the field.

The tests were jointly conducted by the Israeli Ministry of Defense and the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA).

David’s Sling was developed jointly by Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and the American company Raytheon. Designed to intercept ballistic missiles within Earth’s atmosphere, David’s Sling is part of a multi-layered defense system that includes Iron Dome, used against shorter-range projectiles, and the Arrow system, which intercepts ballistic missiles outside the atmosphere.

“I welcome the successful series of tests of David’s Sling, which is added to the successful tests that we recently completed of the Arrow 3 system,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday. “Israel continues to be a global pioneer in the development of missile defense systems, and I would like to express special appreciation to our ally and partner the United States in promoting this important defense project.”

Moshe Patel, head of the branch of the Defense Ministry tasked with conducting the tests, explained, “In this series of tests, we succeeded in bringing the system to the edge of its range, and presented it with future complex threats that the system is supposed to deal with as it continues on. The system succeeded in completely destroying every one of the targets launched at it.”

Patel added that the Defense Ministry was in the process of making the system operational and delivering it to the Israeli Air Force “as soon as possible.”

Shlomo Shemesh, vice president of Rafael, said that the tests proved “we have an extraordinary interceptor … the best of its kind in the world.”

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