A new Arrow missile defense battery will become operational in 2012, according to the IDF Website. The battery is to be stationed in central Israel, where most of Israel's population is concentrated.
The new battery is designed to intercept long-range surface-to-surface missiles with an upgraded version of the Arrow missile. The IDF Website says that the system will use advanced interceptors, which include a number of sensors to identify and intercept the incoming missiles in a precise manner. The battery will be integrated with the newly installed “Super Green Pine” radar system, which is able to detect missiles at a longer range with greater accuracy.
Improvements also include a new missile control center, a unique addition that will direct all the Arrow batteries in the “Defensive Sword” unit. “This is the real conceptual revolution for ‘defensive sword,'” explained a commander within the unit, identified as "First Lieutenant Tomer." “These updates significantly increase the capabilities and resources of the unit. This is a important step in dealing with these threats.”
According to Lt. Tomer, the establishment of the new battery is not connected to recent events but has been in the works since the unit’s inception. “However, the weapons on the other side of the border are always in our sights.”
The Arrow system, Israel's defense system against long-range missile threats, can intercept missiles when they are still above the atmosphere, thus preventing collateral damage from the interception.
The system is in constant development and is on the verge of integrating the newly developed “Arrow 3” missile, an advanced interceptor capable of intercepting missiles at an even longer range.
The Ministry of Defense announced on Friday that it conducted a successful test on the Arrow system. The experiment tested the system’s enhanced capabilities of dealing with ballistic missiles such as the Scud and the Iranian Shihab.
As part of the test, an F-15 Israel Air Force fighter jet launched a Blue Sparrow, a missile developed by Rafael, to impersonate long-range Iranian ballistic missiles. The Arrow system was able to identify the missile and home in on it.