Late last month Israel Aerospace Industries and Boeing officials gathered to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their partnership developing the Arrow anti-ballistic missile defense system. At the same time, they announced an extension to the partnership, which at present is working on the Arrow 3 two-stage interceptor.
Lockheed Martin announced that the troubled, tri-national, medium extended air defense system (MEADS) underwent its first flight test, at the White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) on November 17.
Lockheed Martin’s Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system successfully undertook a sophisticated “two versus two” trial-firing last month, and the air defense system has just completed a final review regarding the possible sale to the United Arab Emirates, which could be announced imminently.
Raytheon has proposed that 10 European warships be equipped with the company’s standard SM-3 missile, so that the burden of providing a missile defense shield over Europe can be shared more equally among the NATO countries. The alliance has crafted a Phased Adaptive Approach (PAA) to extending the shield, so that it covers the entire European continent. But the U.S.
Raytheon will market the Rafael Iron Dome mobile air defense system in the U.S., the companies announced. Raytheon and Haifa, Israel-based Rafael Advanced Defense Systems also are teaming to offer ballistic missile defense and target missile systems.
The Arrow BMD (ballistic missile defense) system that now protects Israel was co-developed and produced by Boeing and Israeli Aircraft Industries (IAI), but funded mostly by the U.S. MDA. Designed to offer better protection than the Patriot PAC-3, development began in the late 1980s with Israeli industry providing the L-band radar and the command and control system.
The Patriot air defense missile system was designed by Raytheon and first fielded in 1984. Four years later, a missile defense capability was added, mainly through changes to the guidance software. In the 1991 Gulf War, the system had mixed success against Iraqi short-range Scud missiles, and it became clear that its blast-fragmentation warhead was inadequate to the task.
Last year the production version of the Saab BAMSE (Bofors advanced missile system evaluation) entered service with the Swedish armed forces and now the company is promoting the air defense system for export.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is promoting the ability of its Pathfinder thermal imager to provide pilots of support aircraft with the kind of brownout/whiteout imaging currently available to combat crews.
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