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Israel’s multi-layered air defence system

Why is it in the news?

  • Israel’s sophisticated air defence system successfully foiled a major attack launched by Iran, which included over 300 armed drones and long-range missiles aimed at the country on April 13.

More about the news

  • The Iranian assault, believed to be in retaliation for an earlier Israeli strike on its consulate in Damascus, was effectively thwarted by the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) and its allies, with minimal damage and injuries in Israeli territory.
  • The IDF reported that 99 percent of the incoming projectiles from Iran were intercepted by the Israeli air defence system, with support from the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and other Middle Eastern allies.
  • Israel’s air defence system is designed to counter a variety of aerial threats, including aircraft, cruise and ballistic missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) using an integrated, multi-layered approach.
  • Components of Israel’s defence system include the Arrow 2 and Arrow 3 anti-ballistic missile systems, David’s Sling (Stunner), Iron Dome, Patriot PAC-2 and PAC-3 systems, and advanced fighter jets operated by the country’s air force.
  • The Arrow system, developed with the US, is capable of intercepting long-range missiles both within the atmosphere (Arrow-2) and outside the Earth’s atmosphere (Arrow-3). David’s Sling (Stunner) is a medium-range air defence system with an advanced radar, while Iron Dome is an indigenous short-range defence system effective against rockets, artillery shells, and mortar bombs.
  • The US-made Patriot PAC-2 and PAC-3 systems were employed during the First Gulf War in 1991, while the F-16 and F-35 fighter jets are equipped for air defence. Additionally, Israel is developing the Iron Beam, a laser-based system for intercepting threats.
  • During the Iranian attack, early radar warnings were issued, enabling the detection and interception of incoming drones and missiles from multiple locations with the assistance of US, UK, and French military forces.
  • Israel has deployed its air defence systems and allies’ fighter jets to intercept incoming threats, with support from US Central Command and joint efforts from the UK’s Royal Air Force and French jets based in Jordan.

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