Israel has delivered the first of two Iron Dome Defense System batteries to the US Army, more than a year after the purchase agreement was signed between the two countries.
The delivery was marked by a symbolic event at the Iron Dome production line of defence contractor Rafael Advanced Systems.
The Iron Dome is a mobile all-weather air defence system designed to protect populated areas and critical assets by intercepting shorter-range targets such as rockets, artillery and mortars.
In August last year, the US Army finalised a contract to acquire two Iron Dome missile defence system batteries to enhance its short-range missile defence capabilities.
The addition will help the US to fill the need for an interim capability as it does not possess short-range air defence solutions.
According to the Jerusalem Post, the purchase included 12 launchers, two sensors, two battlement management centres and 240 interceptors. The primary contractor is Rafael.
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The second battery is expected to be delivered in the near future.
Commenting on the delivery of first Iron Dome battery, Israel Defense Minister Benjamin Gantz said: “The completion of this agreement serves as further proof that the defence alliance [between the US and Israel], is based on common values and interests, which are stronger than ever.”
The Iron Dome short-range air defence system is capable of neutralising targets at a range of up to 70km.
Rafael executive vice-president and air and missile defence division head Pini Yungman told the publication that a series of tests were conducted at the White Sands testing field. The system, delivered to the US, is tailored according to their requirements.