Israel’s Arrow Theater Missile Defense

Arrow missile launch Pt Mugu 2004

Pt. Mugu launch
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August 23/23: Germany The Israeli government has announced that it will sell the Arrow 3 missile-defense system to Germany, a $3.5 billion deal, marking it as Israel’s largest defense export ever. The sale was made possible after US Department of State officials notified senior defense leaders here of the approval. The step is necessary because the system is a co-development between Washington’s Missile Defense Agency and the Israel Missile Defense Organization, led by local contractor Israel Aerospace Industries.

 

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Arrow test concept (click to view full) In a dawning age of rogue states, ballistic missile defenses are steadily become a widely accepted necessity. Iran is widely believed to be developing nuclear capabilities, and Israeli concerns were heightened after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad urged that Israel be “wiped off the map” (the fact that America was also placed in that category went largely uncovered). Because missile defenses are so important, states like India and Israel have taken steps to ensure that they have the ability to build many of the key pieces. The Arrow project is a collaboration between Boeing and IAI to produce the missile interceptors that accompany the required radars, satellites, command and control systems. NOTE: Article capped and coverage suspended in 2011. The Arrow System Arrow launch (click to view full) In general, the Israeli Arrow is a more advanced weapon than the Patriot and possesses far more range, undertaking high altitude interceptions and covering a wide area (est. 90km/ 54 mile range, maximum altitude 30 miles/ 50 km for Arrow 2) as a Theater Missile Defense (TMD) system. Unlike the USA’s THAAD, PAC-3, or SM-3 which all use “hit to kill” technology, Israel’s Arrow relies on […]

Arrow Interception Concept

Arrow test concept
(click to view full)

In a dawning age of rogue states, ballistic missile defenses are steadily become a widely accepted necessity. Iran is widely believed to be developing nuclear capabilities, and Israeli concerns were heightened after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad urged that Israel be “wiped off the map” (the fact that America was also placed in that category went largely uncovered).

Because missile defenses are so important, states like India and Israel have taken steps to ensure that they have the ability to build many of the key pieces. The Arrow project is a collaboration between Boeing and IAI to produce the missile interceptors that accompany the required radars, satellites, command and control systems.

NOTE: Article capped and coverage suspended in 2011.

The Arrow System

Arrow ABM Launch

Arrow launch
(click to view full)

In general, the Israeli Arrow is a more advanced weapon than the Patriot and possesses far more range, undertaking high altitude interceptions and covering a wide area (est. 90km/ 54 mile range, maximum altitude 30 miles/ 50 km for Arrow 2) as a Theater Missile Defense (TMD) system. Unlike the USA’s THAAD, PAC-3, or SM-3 which all use “hit to kill” technology, Israel’s Arrow relies on a directed fragmentation warhead to destroy enemy missiles. It can work in conjunction with a number of systems, but its main Israeli partner is the Green Pine long-range, ground-based fire control radar. The system and its engagements are controlled by the mobile Citron Tree battle management center. Since the launchers are also mobile, and the radars are semi-mobile, the system is resistant to pre-emptive strikes if good discipline is maintained.

The exoatmospheric, 2-stage Arrow-3 will use pivoting optical sensors and its own upper-stage kick motor, instead of separate control rockets for final steering. The goal is a highly maneuverable missile that can reach more than double the height of existing Arrow-2 interceptors, using a lower-weight missile. This will also have the effect of extending the missile’s range.

In contrast, Israel’s Patriot PAC-2s are more of a local point defense system with a range of about 40km/ 24 miles. They were all Israel had during the 1991 Gulf War, but these days, Israel’s Patriot PAC-2 GEM+ missiles will only be launched if the Arrow missile fails, or the target is outside the Arrow’s protective umbrella. In that respect, the Arrow/Homa system will play a role similar to the longer-range naval SM-3 Standard missile that forms the high end of Japan’s planned ABM shield (and seems destined for Europe and other states in a land-based role), or the US Army’s THAAD.

Overall responsibility for Arrow lies with the U.S. Missile Defense Organization (MDA) in Washington, DC, and the Israel Ministry of Defense in Tel Aviv, Israel. The program is executed by the Israel Missile Defense Organization in Tel Aviv, and the US Army Program Executive Office for Air and Missile Defense’s Arrow Product Office in Huntsville, AL. Key contractors include:

* Israel Aircraft Industries (prime contractor, Arrow missile, Green Pine fire control radar)
* Tadiran Electronics in Holon, Israel (Citron Tree battle management center)
* Boeing (about 35% of the Arrow missile, manages many US subcontractors)
* Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control in Orlando, FL (radar seeker)
* Raytheon in Santa Barbara, CA (Infrared seeker)
* Other American subcontractors include ATK in Iuka, MS and Clearfield, UT; Manes Machine, in Fort Collins, CO; Ceradyne Thermo-Materials, Inc., in Scottsdale, GA; and Sanmina SCI, in Huntsville, AL.
* Rafael Armament Development Authority, Haifa, Israel (Black Sparrow air-launched target; joint U.S./Israel effort).

Radar EL-M-2080

EL/M-2080 “Green Pine”
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Israel deployed the first battery of Arrow-1 missiles on March 14/2000, and has continued to upgrade the system. The summer of 2005 marked delivery of the first co-produced Boeing/IAI missiles. Israeli and US troops engaged in pre-training for the biennial Juniper Cobra exercise in 2007, and part of that process includes working out interoperability issues between the Patriot PAC-3 system (ad PAC-2 GEM+ that Israel deploys) and Arrow.

On July 29/04 Israel and the USA carried out joint experiment in the USA, in which the Arrow was launched against a real Scud missile. The experiment was a success, as the Arrow destroyed the Scud with a direct hit. In December 2005 the system was successfully deployed in a test against a replicated Shahab-3 missile. This feat was repeated on February 11/07.

Despite some international interest in the Arrow, the USA has blocked export initiatives so far. Although India purchased an Arrow-capable “Green Pine” radar from Elta in 2001, and has expressed interest in deploying its own battery of Arrow interceptor missiles, U.S. concerns regarding compliance with the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR, an international agreement limiting the proliferation of ballistic missile technology) have effectively halted such plans for the time being. This did not stop India from using the Green Pine technology in its own November 2006 anti-missile test, using a modified Prithvi short-range ballistic missile with an exo-atmospheric kill vehicle and a hit to kill warhead.

Contracts & Key Events, 2004-Present

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsW8Ib0pvUs]

Arrow-3 development
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The section is still being updated.

August 23/23: Germany The Israeli government has announced that it will sell the Arrow 3 missile-defense system to Germany, a $3.5 billion deal, marking it as Israel’s largest defense export ever. The sale was made possible after US Department of State officials notified senior defense leaders here of the approval. The step is necessary because the system is a co-development between Washington’s Missile Defense Agency and the Israel Missile Defense Organization, led by local contractor Israel Aerospace Industries.

July 6/23: Talks The Director General of the Israel Ministry of Defense, Major General (Res.) Eyal Zamir, met with Mr. Benedikt Zimmer, the State Secretary of the German Federal Ministry of Defense, in Berlin on July 3. During the meeting, the Director General of the Israel Ministry of Defense updated his colleague on the IDF operation targeting terror hotspots in the city of Jenin. The leaders discussed the strengthening of defense relations between the two countries’ defense ministries and advanced the agreement regarding the sale of the Arrow 3 air and missile defense system to Germany.

June 15/23: Advanced Payment German lawmakers on Wednesday approved an advance payment for the purchase of the sophisticated Arrow 3 air defense system from Israel for nearly $4.3 billion. The budget committee in the lower house of parliament gave the green light for an initial payment of 560 million euros, a committee source told AFP. The long-range Arrow 3 system, designed to shoot down missiles above the Earth’s atmosphere, is powerful enough to offer protective cover for neighboring European Union states.

June 13/23: Germany The German government will ask its lawmakers to release advance payment of up to 560 million euros this week, in order to buy Israel’s Arrow 3 missile defense system. This, according to a Reuters report from Friday, which relies on exclusively seen documents. In total, Germany is expected to pay almost $4.3 billion for this system, an exo-atmospheric interceptor for long-range threats developed by Israel Aerospace Industries. According to Reuters, Germany hopes to strike a deal by the end of 2025, and receive the systems by the end of 2025. Originally, the deal was supposed to close for about 3 billion euros.

 

September 15/22: Germany Bloomberg says Germany has selected the Israeli Arrow 3 over THAAD for its ballistic missile defense program. Chancellor Olaf Scholz met Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid in Berlin on September 12 and both spoke positively on a potential deal in a press conference later that day.

March 31/22: UAE And Bahrain Globes reports that Bahrain and UAE are keen on acquiring the IAI Arrow 3 ballistic missile defense system. The potential purchase was discussed at the Negev Summit in Israel. Besides the Arrow 3, both countries and Morocco are keen on purchasing the Iron Dome as well.

March 29/22: Germany Berlin is reportedly looking at the possibility of acquiring the IAI Arrow 3 exoatmospheric anti-ballistic missile system to defend the country from potential ballistic missile attacks from Russia. The discussions took place when chief of defense, Gen. Eberhard Zorn, spoke to Chancellor Olaf Scholz last week. According to German media, the system will costs $2.2 billion and three Green Pine radars will provide all-round coverage. The radar coverage is wide enough that neighboring countries such as Poland will need only to buy Arrow 3 interceptors and Germany’s radars can supply the necessary targeting information.

January 23/19: Successful test The Israeli military along with the US National Missile Defense Agency successfully conducted an Arrow-3 missile defense system test. Arrow-3 is a US-Israeli exoatmospheric anti-ballistic missile system designed to intercept medium-range ballistic missiles. The system was developed in response to growing capabilities by regional adversaries and operates at a higher altitude and greater range than currently fielded defense systems. After two scheduled tests were canceled, a successful test of the Arrow 3 system was carried out on Monday morning.

September 6/18: Canister made in the USA Missile canisters for Israel Aerospace Industries’ Arrow-3 system are currently manufactured by Mississippi-based company Stark. Stark recently delivered the first canister to IAI. Israel’s Arrow differs from US systems like THAAD, PAC-3 and SM-3, because it relies on a directed fragmentation warhead instead of “hit to kill” technology. The exoatmospheric, 2-stage Arrow-3 is the latest version of the combat proven system. Arrow-3 is a highly maneuverable missile that can reach more than double the height of existing Arrow-2 interceptors, using a lower-weight missile increases the systems operational range. Stark is one of many US vendors that produce high-end components to Israel’s Arrow, David’s Sling and Iron Dome systems.

May 02/18: Arrow-3 Test Cancellation No. 3 Israel has postponed a planned live test of its Arrow-3 ballistic missile interceptor to improve the system’s readiness. The Arrow system is a more advanced weapon than the Patriot and possesses far more range, undertaking high altitude interceptions and covering a wide area as a Theater Missile Defense (TMD) system. Unlike the USA’s THAAD, PAC-3, or SM-3 which all use “hit to kill” technology, Israel’s Arrow relies on a directed fragmentation warhead to destroy enemy missiles. It can work in conjunction with a number of systems. The system passed its first full interception test over the Mediterranean Sea in 2015 and was deployed in Israel in 2017. The cancelled test in Alaska was scheduled for June 2018 and was supposed to test the missile’s interception distances. Arrow-3 is jointly manufactured by Israel Aircraft Industries and Boeing and is regarded as bulwark against Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah and serves as the top tier of an integrated Israeli shield built up to withstand various potential missile or rocket salvoes.

February 22/18: Arrow-3—Successful Test! After two test cancellations, the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and Israel Missile Defense Organization successfully completed a flight test of the Arrow 3 weapons system. The test launch of the anti-ballistic missile system took place at a test site in central Israel on Monday, February 19, and was led by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) in collaboration with the Israeli air force. The MDA, the system’s co-developer, also supported the test. Moshe Patel, the director of Israel’s Missile Defense Organization, said a more advanced test is scheduled to take place in Alaska later this year, and pictures of the launch were posted on Twitter by the Israeli Ministry of Defense.

January 18/18: Arrow-3—Test Cancellation No. 2 A “communications malfunction” has been reported by Defense News as the reason why Israel called off a test of its Arrow-3 advanced missile defense system. The cancellation follows an earlier such test that was called off in December, however, the Defense Ministry insisted that the cancelled trial “has no impact” on already operational Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 missile defense systems. Moshe Patel, head of Israel’s missile defense arm, said that had an Iranian missile been launched at Israel, the Arrow-3 system—which has been operational since January 2017—would have still been used to intercept it.

December 6/17: Development Testing-Postponement A planned developmental test of the Arrow-3 interceptor system was postponed on Monday after its target missile started acting unsafely. The target—an upgraded version of Rafael’s Sparrow family of air-launched missiles—started to behave strangely shortly after launch in a way that was not conforming to safety parameters determined in advance, and resulted in testers calling a ‘no test’. Engineers are now evaluating the data from the missile target to see what went wrong. Speaking on the incident, Israel’s Defense Ministry noted that Monday morning’s planned test was part of a series of tests periodically conducted by Israel and the US to continuously validate the nation’s multitiered defense network, while Boaz Levy, executive vice president for lead contractor Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), insisted that the planned intercept test was a developmental test aimed at validating new capabilities planned for future block versions of the Arrow-3, and thus had no bearing on the operational capability of the Arrow weapon system or its continuously upgraded Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 intercepting missiles deployed by the Israeli Air Force. Arrow-3 is Israel’s highest layer of a multitiered and intentionally overlapping network of active defenses against rockets and tactical ballistic missiles aimed at intercepting advanced, possibly nuclear-tipped threats hundreds of kilometers in space.

August 04/17:  Early concept work has begun on the Arrow-4 interceptor, Israel’s new air defense system designed to counter future ballistic missile threats from Iran. Involved in the work are Israel’s MAFAT Defense Research and Development Authority, state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, as well as other firms, who are now evaluating the technologies needed to improve the ability to track, target and ultimately destroy such threats. While the work is in its infancy— IAI executive vice president Boaz Levy called said the effort is too early to call Arrow-4—the new interceptor will extend capabilities beyond Arrow-2, which intercepts Scud-type ballistic missiles high within Earth’s atmosphere, and Arrow-3, which is designed to destroy targets in space. The new system will specifically look into countering salvo strikes, sub-munition warheads and multiple reentry vehicles (MRV).

June 12/17: The Israel Missile Defense Organization will partner with the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to test the Arrow anti-ballistic missile system in Alaska. On announcing the upcoming test, director of the MDA Adm. James Syring stated that Tel Aviv experiences “significant range constraints within the Mediterranean” when it comes to missile testing capabilities, and bringing the Arrow test to the Kodiak Island facility would help to overcome that. The test is likely to take place next year with Alaska Aerospace Corp scheduled to help with the test.

March 20/17: Israel’s Arrow anti-ballistic missile system has been combat tested for the first time. The system came into operation in order to intercept a Syrian surface-to-air missile that was targeting Israeli warplanes returning from a raid on Syrian sites. Despite claims from Damascus that one Israeli plane had been downed, IDF officials stated that no aircraft had been lost.

January 20/17: The Israeli Air Force has received delivery of their first Arrow-3 missile defense battery. A joint-development effort by Boeing and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), the Arrow-3 interceptor will form the upper-tier layer of Israel’s multi-tiered Arrow Weapons System (AWS), and is designed to fly nearly twice as high at half the weight of the Arrow-2 interceptor, which covers the lower-tier segment of the network. Arrow-3 missiles will allow the IAF to shoot twice against a single ballistic target, assess for battle damage and, if needed, divert to other approaching threats, with the Arrow-2 operating as a back-up.

June 16/15: Joint US-Israel missile programs may benefit from additional funding under a Defense Appropriations Bill, following a vote in the House. The programs covered by the increase in funds include the Iron Dome, Arrow, Arrow 3 and David’s Sling systems. The last of these will receive the most significant boost, with an additional $286.5 million allocation.

Feb 22/11: An Arrow System successfully intercepts a ballistic target missile during a flight test conducted at Pt. Mugu Sea Range, CA. This test is part of the Arrow System Improvement Program (ASIP) and was conducted jointly by the Israel Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency.

The test represented a realistic scenario, and all the elements (Arrow, Green Pine radar, Citron Tree BMC) performed in their operational configurations, using new Block 4 software designed to improve their ability to discriminate targets. US MDA release | video || Defense News.

July 27/10: The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense votes to fund Israel’s missile defense programs at $422.7 million for 2011, nearly $96 million above the original White House funding request. This represents a doubling of aid for missile defense from 2010, in the wake of an emerging consensus that the CIA’s 2007 estimate of Iran’s nuclear weapons program was wrong, and underestimated Iranian progress.

On the other hand, the structure of that funding is less good for the Arrow program. While the HASD added $58 million to the administration’s original FY 2011 Arrow-3 request, that provisional $108.8 million is actually less than FY 2010 funding of $157.4 million ($60M request + $97.4M Congress added). Likewise, the complementary medium range RAFAEL/Raytheon David’s Sling/Magic Wand dropped from $134.7 million in FY 2010 to $84.7 million requested in 2011. The net increase comes from a one-time, $205 million grant for the procurement of 10 RAFAEL Iron Dome batteries for defense against short-range missiles. HASD Chair statement [ PDF] | HASD Table [PDF] | AllGov | Jerusalem Post | Israel’s Globes business news.

July 26/10: Israel and the United States sign a deal to develop and field the Arrow 3 system. It will be capable of tracking and shooting down ballistic missiles at a higher altitudes, including fully exoatmospheric threats. US MDA | China’s Xinhua.

March 22/10: Defense News reports that U.S. and Israeli government and industrial partners will press ahead with Arrow 3 work through good faith understandings, until formalized government-to-government accords catch up. The goal is to deploy the new missile by 2014.

Production of the Arrow-2 is winding down, and final deliveries are planned by the end of 2010. Government and industrial partners have apparently been working together on Arrow-3 for nearly 2 years, moving the program through at least 4 of the US Missile Defense Agency’s required technology “knowledge points, and validate critical subsystems. A first fly-out is planned for 2011.

manufacturing missiles

Manufacturing
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April 7/09: The Israeli Ministry of Defense and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency conduct a successful test of the Arrow ballistic missile defense system. The operationally realistic test was conducted in Israel, using an ASIP interceptor co-produced by Boeing and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). The event marked the co-produced Arrow II’s 2nd intercept in 2 attempts, as well as its 3rd successful flight test. Boeing.

Jan 4/09: Israel’s Arutz Sheva news service reports that the Arrow missile defense system has been deployed near Ashkelon, in part because IAI has worked with American firms and developed an updated radar system named MC4. The new radar can also deal with smaller missiles, such as the Hamas government’s Kassam or Grad rockets being launched from Gaza. Using GPS and camera sensors, the MC4 system tracks the flight path, and within a minute of launch, it can determine both the launch site and projected landing site of the missile.

At the same time, pressure is building to add Northrop Grumman’s SkyGuard laser system to Israel’s defenses, a system whose technology is based on joint US-Israeli research:

“Supporters claim that the Skyguard laser based system is more suited to Israel’s needs than the rocket-based Rafael solution. Firstly, the laser can intercept short range missiles such as the Kassam rocket which hit their targets in less than 10 seconds. The rocket-based Rafael system can only hit medium-range rockets which reach their targets in more than 20 seconds. In addition, each laser round fired costs approximately $3,000. In contrast, defensive rockets for the Iron Dome system are estimated to cost over $100,000. Supporters also claim that the Skyguard system could be deployed in a short amount of time, whereas the completion of the Iron Dome rocket system is not foreseen in the near future.”

Sept 29/08: The USA has deployed an unspecified X-band radar system in Israel, manned by around 120 American personnel. Reports hint that the system may be similar to the radars deployed to Japan, or the AN/TPY-2 used as part of the THAAD system. The Guardian:

“One key feature of the system is that information from early-warning satellites – which greatly increases the radar’s ability to pinpoint launches – would remain in US hands. The satellite ground station would be in Europe and transmit data to Israel.

…The high-powered X-Band system, manufactured by Raytheon Company, would allow Israel’s Arrow II ballistic shield to engage an Iranian Shehab-3 missile about halfway through its 11-minute flight to Israel, six times sooner than Israel’s existing Green Pine radar can. The X-Band can track an object the size of a baseball from 2,900 miles away.”

Feb 14/08: IAI announces that The Israel Ministry of Defense (IMOD) / Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) has awarded a follow-on production contract to Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI)’s MLM Division for an undisclosed number of additional Arrow 2 Anti-Tactical Ballistic Missile (ATBM) system interceptors. The interceptors will be assembled in Israel at IAI’s MLM Division, the Arrow prime contractor, with major portions coming from Boeing IDS, the U.S. prime contractor in Huntsville, AL., ATK in Luka, MS., and various other subcontractors across the U.S.

Aug 23/07: The Jerusalem Post publishes “IDF modifying Arrow deployment in the North.” Key quote:

“Following this past summer’s war and the recognition that the next war will involve Syrian and Iranian missile barrages, the Air Defense Forces decided to adopt a “wide deployment” for its Arrow missile batteries.”

Aug 6/07: Jane’s Defence Weekly: “Israel is leaning towards upgrading its own anti-ballistic missile Arrow Weapon System (AWS) rather than acquiring the US Theatre High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) system. While no formal decision has yet been taken, Jane’s has learned that officials from the Israel Ballistic Missile Defence Organisation (BMDO) have informed the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) about potential complications with integrating THAAD into the country’s missile-defence alignment.”

March 26/07: An improved Arrow II missile, with modifications to its hardware and electronics under the Arrow System Improvement Program, is successfully test-fired this afternoon at Palmahim Air Force Base. The interceptor performed successfully according to design specifications, meeting all expectations and objectives. This is the 1st successful test of the improved configuration, and the 2nd test overall of a co-produced interceptor. Testing is managed by the Israeli Missile Defense Organization, in close cooperation with the U.S. Missile Defense Agency.

Test objectives were to collect flight engineering data for future test events, and to test the capabilities of the improved Arrow interceptor. This test marks the U.S./Israeli Arrow II program’s 14th success in 16 attempts. US MDA [PDF].

Feb 12/07: A successful ballistic missile intercept test by the Arrow missile defense system, conducted at night over the Mediterranean Sea. It’s the 1st test of a co-produced Arrow intercept missile fired from an improved launcher, using 2 Arrow batteries separated from each other. The target, called “Black Sparrow,” was launched from an F-15 fighter aircraft at which point the Fire Control Radar acquired the target and notified the Battle Management Center. A defense plan was issued and a mission command was sent to the Launch Control Center to fire the interceptor missile. This test marks the U.S./Israeli Arrow II program’s 13th success in 15 attempts. US MDA [PDF].

Spring 2005: The 1st co-produced Arrow 2 interceptor is delivered by IAI to the MoD. Source [PDF].

Feb 2/05: Israel Defense Forces carry out a successful test of the IAI/Boeing Arrow anti-missile system at a secret location in the center of the country. The Jerusalem Post reports that “an F-15 fighter jet flying over the Mediterranean dropped a Black Sparrow test missile specially designed to simulate an incoming Iranian Shihab 3 missile headed toward the Israeli shore.” The successful interception occurred at a higher altitude than previous efforts, and tested recent improvements made to the Arrow 2 system.

Israeli Air Force Patriot missile batteries also participated passively in the test, following the incoming missile with their radars. The Times of India notes that this was the 14th test of the system, which has included joint tests in the USA and advanced tests simulating advanced separating warheads. As evidenced by the Patriot batteries’ participation in this latest test, Israel is working to integrate all of its key assets and connections to US data into one national system, rather than relying on fragmented local control. Jerusalem Post | copy at United Jerusalem.

Arrow missile launch Pt Mugu 2004

Pt. Mugu launch
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Aug 26/04: US Missile Defense Agency [PDF]:

“The Arrow anti-ballistic missile system was used today in a joint Israel/United States test exercise as part of the ongoing Arrow System Improvement Program (ASIP). The test was the second in a series conducted at the Point Mugu Sea Range in California. It was the thirteenth Arrow intercept test and the eighth test of the complete weapon system. The Arrow interceptor was launched toward the target but no intercept was achieved. Many of the test objectives were successfully completed, and the test data is being analyzed by test engineers to determine why an intercept did not occur.”

July 29/04: A modified Arrow System Improvement Program anti-ballistic missile successfully intercepts and destroys a ballistic missile target today, west of San Nicolas Island on the Pt. Mugu Sea Range in California. Point Mugu was used, in order to offer a realistic scenario that could not have been tested in Israel due to test-field safety restrictions.

The objective of the test was to demonstrate the Arrow system’s improved performance against a target that represents a threat to Israel. This was the 12th Arrow intercept test, and the 7th test of the complete Arrow system. US MDA [PDF]

April 1/04: Boeing announces a $78 million contract from Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) to produce Arrow II interceptor components. The contract, effective immediately, runs through 2006 with options for additional production until Q2 2008. The total contract value could exceed $225 million if all options are exercised.

Boeing and IAI signed a teaming agreement in 2002 to co-produce the interceptor for the Arrow weapon system. The firm is responsible for production of the electronics section, the radome, motorcases for the booster and sustainer, and the canister that holds the interceptor in the missile launcher. Boeing production and program management will be conducted in Huntsville, AL. IAI, the prime contractor of the Arrow system, is responsible for system integration and final interceptor assembly in Israel.

Boeing will manage several major subcontracts to support the Arrow interceptor production including Alliant-Techsystems in Iuka, MS and Clearfield, UT; Manes Machine, in Fort Collins, CO; Ceradyne Thermo-Materials, Inc., in Scottsdale, GA; and Sanmina SCI, in Huntsville, AL.

Sept 14/2000: The Israel Ministry of Defense, in cooperation with the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Army, conduct the 2nd successful intercept of a target ballistic missile by the Arrow Weapon System (AWS) in Israel. This was the 8th overall Arrow-2 flight test, but the 1st intercept for the against a new air-launched, in-bound target called the Black Sparrow.

The Arrow interceptor took off and flew in a nominal trajectory, acquired the Black Sparrow target, then locked on and homed on the designated threat. The warhead was fused at the proper range and the Arrow interceptor destroyed the target. The Green Pine fire control radar and Citron Tree battle management center participated fully in the test, performing battle planning, launch operations, and up link/down link message applications, as well as post intercept verifications. Both assets worked according to plan and fulfilled all test objectives. Analysis of all data is underway to evaluate and confirm results. US MDA [PDF]

Additional Readings & Sources

* Israeli MoD – Arrow Weapon System site.

* US MDA – Arrow gallery. Covers joint tests to 2004.

* Boeing – Arrow Interceptor

* Israeli-Weapons.com – Arrow. Profiles the entire Homa system, including Green Pine and Lemon Tree.

* Claremont Institute MissileThreat.com – Arrow Missile

* Claremont Institute MissileThreat.com – Shabab-3

* Wikipedia – Arrow Missile

* yNet News – Iran: We will build 20 new nuclear plants. also discusses the Arrow system test, and the larger efforts underway on the international front.

* BBC News (Feb 11/07) – Israeli missile test ‘successful’

* Jerusalem Post (Dec 2/05) – ‘Arrow’ Scud buster test a success

* India Times (Dec 2/04) – Israel successfully tests Arrow missile system

* Claremont Institute MissileThreat.com (Nov 17/04) – Aegis Test Successful: Marks First Attempt Against More Advanced Separating Target. This had been a key concern re: the system.

* Globes Online (Nov 7/05) – Jane’s: First IAI-Boeing “Arrow 2” missile delivered to IAF

* US Army News Service (Nov 2/05) – Air defenders train with Israeli counterparts

* A Daily Briefing on Iran (Oct 29/04) – Why Haven’t We Seen This? Sometimes a picture really is worth 1,000 words, and it’s worth looking at this one from Ahmadinejad’s infamous speech… but the thousand words in documents like Hassan Abbassi’s “War Preparation Plan” can be at least as chilling.

* MEMRI Translation Special Dispatch Series (Oct 28/05) – Translated excerpts from Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s speech

* UPI (Aug 27/04) – Arrow anti-ballistic missile test fails. It was tested against a separating warhead. The articles gives details re: what happened – but the most fascinating part to me was the difference between American and Israeli weapons testing philosophies.

* JINSA (Aug 4/04) – First U.S. Test of Arrow Missile Defense System Goes ‘Beautifully’. Adds useful background re: the overall US-Israeli program.

* Israeli IDF (Aug 2/04) – The ‘Arrow’ System Test- A Strategic Accomplishment

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