Israel’s Defense Ministry Developing Laser Missile Defense System
Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz has allocated a “significant budget” of hundreds of millions of shekels to develop and produce a high-power laser system to intercept rockets, mortars and drones, known as the “Iron Beam,” the Defense Ministry announced on Thursday. The ministry will sign an agreement with Rafael Advanced Defense Systems to develop the system, which will be integrated into Israel’s multi-tier air defense array.
The Iron Beam system reportedly will be integrated with the existing Iron Dome missile defense system.
The development plan for Iron Beam will be led by Directorate of Defense R&D in the Ministry of Defense together with Rafael and Elbit Systems. Following the initial investment, the next stage will include the allocation of additional hundreds of millions of shekels to complete the process, the ministry said.
“Today we are advancing towards a dramatic change in the battlefield and enhancing Israel’s security in the face of growing threats emanating from Gaza, Lebanon and Syria, supported by Iran and terrorist organizations. The high-power laser system constitutes a strategic change in Israel’s defense of the home front in addition to the political and operational echelons’ flexibility during combat,” Gantz said in a statement.