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Watch: Israel successfully tests new laser-based air defence system ‘Iron Beam’ to intercept rockets, mortars and missiles

Iron Beam, developed by Israeli defence contractor Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, is a directed-energy weapon air defence system designed to complement a series of aerial defence systems.

Israel has successfully tested its new laser missile-defence system ‘Iron Beam’, the world’s first energy-based weapons system that can intercept an unlimited number of mortars, rockets and anti-tank missiles.

According to the reports, Iron Beam, developed by Israeli defence contractor Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, is a directed-energy weapon air defence system designed to complement a series of aerial defence systems.

On Twitter, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett took to Twitter to announce the successful trials of Iron Beam. He tweeted, “Israel has successfully tested the new “Iron Beam” laser interception system. This is the world’s first energy-based weapons system that uses a laser to shoot down incoming UAVs, rockets & mortars at the cost of $3.50 per shot.”

“This may sound like science-fiction, but it’s real,” said Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.

How does Iron Beam work?

The Iron Beam system, which uses a fibre laser to destroy an airborne target, is designed to destroy short-range rockets, artillery, and mortar bombs. It ranges up to 7 km, which is often considered too close for the Iron Dome system to intercept projectiles effectively. The latest system could also intercept unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The latest laser system’s effectiveness can be deployed on land, air, and sea. The Israel Defence Forces intend to deploy the laser systems around Israel’s borders over the next decade to protect the country against attacks.

The significant advantages of using a directed energy weapon over conventional missile interceptors are that it is cost-effective and can be used without any limit. There is also no interceptor debris to fall on the area protected. According to Israeli defence, the Iron Beam’s interceptions are silent and invisible, which will only cost around $3.50 or around Rs.250 to intercept a flying object.

The recent successful tests will alter the security and strategic dynamics in the region, pushing Israel’s defence capabilities against Hamas and Iran. Reportedly, the trials took place last month in the Negev Desert.

Israel has already developed or deployed a series of air defence systems to intercept flying objects, from long-range missiles to rockets. The Iron Beam is Israel’s fifth element of the integrated air defence system, consisting of Arrow 2, Arrow 3, David’s Sling, and Iron Dome.

So far, Israel has used its Iron Dome defence system to intercept rockets, missiles shot from hostile neighbouring areas. It has been a great success for the IDF, with a 90 per cent interception rate against incoming rocket fire. However, the IDF officials say the system is expensive to deploy. Here is a detailed explainer of the working of the Iron Dome air defence system.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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