US Army activates two new Israeli Iron Dome air defense missile systems

According to information published on the Facebook account of the U.S. Army Future Command on November 13, 2020, the U.S. Army on Friday, November 13, 2020, activated two new Iron Dome air defense artillery batteries at Fort Bliss, Texas, charged with evaluating the two Iron Dome missile defense systems that the United States recently purchased from Israel.
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Launcher unit of Iron Dome missile mounted on its truck carrier. (Picture source Army Recognition)

The units will spend several months testing Iron Dome at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., near Fort Bliss to help the Army determine whether the system should be integrated into its range of air defense capabilities, the U.S. Army announced in a statement.

On 30 September 2020, we have published news to announce the delivery of two Iron Dome Air Defense Missile System batteries to the U.S. Army.

On May 29, 2020, the U.S. Army has announced a plan to begin phased testing of the systems. The rigorous testing of each system will end with a live-fire engagement to shoot down a surrogate cruise missile target. After this, the Iron Dome batteries will officially stand up at Fort Bliss, Texas, and be available for operational deployment by September 2021 and December 2021, respectively.

The Iron Dome system has been operational in Israel since 2011 and has demonstrated its outstanding capabilities with over 2400 successful interceptions of incoming threats. It is an integral part of Israel's multi-layered defense array developed by the IMDO. The defense array includes the Iron Dome, David's Sling, Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 weapon systems.

Iron Dome is the only multi-mission system in the world that provides a combat-proven defense solution for countering rockets, artillery & mortars (C-RAM) and PGMs (VSHORAD) for land and sea. Iron Dome is an effective system for countering C-RAM threats and for NG VSHORAD (Very Short Range Air Defense System) protection.

An Iron Dome typical air defense missile battery consists of a radar unit, missile control unit, and 3 to 4 stationary launcher, all located at the same site. Each launcher, containing 20 Tamir interceptor missiles, is independently deployed and operated remotely via a secure wireless connection. Tamir missiles feature electro-optical sensors and steering fins with proximity fuze blast warheads.

Reportedly, each Iron Dome battery is capable of protecting an urban area of approximately 150 square kilometers. The system is designed to counter short-range rockets and 155 mm artillery shells with a range of up to 70 kilometers.

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