Israel-based company Rafael has announced that its surface-to-air Python 5 and Derby (SPYDER) air defence missile system has been upgraded with new tactical capabilities.

The combat-proven system now features a counter-tactical ballistic missiles (TBM) capability, which is part of the company’s counter-TBM Spyder programme.

Rafael launched the programme based on its research, analysis, and lessons learnt from the ongoing armed conflicts that involved extensive use of various tactical ballistic missiles.

Ready for implementation, the upgraded SPYDER system will also fulfil the growing and urgent operational requirements of Rafael’s existing customers across the globe.

As part of the programme, the company will extend the capabilities of SPYDER’s effectors and execute the delivery of different counter-TBM derivatives for the existing air defence systems.

Rafael Air & Missile Defence Systems Division executive vice-president and general manager brigadier general (res.) Pinhas Yungman said: “We are proud to announce that our international sales leader, SPYDER, has been reinforced with a TBM defence capability.

“This extremely important counter-TBM feature will be offered as an option in SPYDER’s toolbox. Under SPYDER’s tailor-made solution paradigm, this capability will be offered as a cost-effective option to our valuable customers with respective urgent operational needs.”

According to Rafael, SPYDER is the only Israeli-made air defence system to be included in NATO’s aerial defence array.

This low-level, quick reaction, autonomous system is deployed to deter airborne attacks from helicopters, uncrewed aerial vehicles, precision-guided munitions, and other aircraft to protect forces on the battlefield.

It is an open architecture platform that can support the easy and rapid integration of external components as per the requirements of the users.

SPYDER can detect threats while moving and can conduct a 360° launch within seconds.