Israeli defense specialist Rafael (Chalet A194, Static A33) is exhibiting a range of the company’s products and solutions at Paris, including the new Spice 250 weapon and a wide range of air defense missiles and control systems. Although it is well known for its missiles and electro-optical sensors, Rafael is involved in the creation of complex systems that bring increasing effectiveness, efficiency and economy to the defense arena.
The new FODetect foreign object debris (FOD) detection systems went operational last week at Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion International Airport (LLBG). The equipment, developed by Israeli company Xsight Systems, was certified after an evaluation process and soft launch on Ben Gurion’s primary Runway 8/26.
Five days after a ceasefire ended the latest conflict between Israel and the Hamas regime controlling Gaza, in which the Rafael Iron Dome rocket interception system featured prominently, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced the first successful test of a new interception system. The David’s Sling system, or “Magic Wand,” that was co-developed with Raytheon and the U.S.
Halfway through a 10-year agreement between Washington and Tel Aviv, the U.S. now gives Israel $3.1 billion each year in foreign military funding (FMF), which is about one-fifth of the total Israeli defense budget, according to a recent report by the U.S. Congressional Research Service (CRS) .The FMF total does not include American money spent on joint missile defense projects with Israel, for which $99.8 million has been requested in Fiscal Year 2013.
Moshe Yanai, data-storage entrepreneur and aircraft owner-pilot, is seeing the fruits of his labor to establish two widely dispersed on-demand, air-taxi operations: Tel Aviv Executive Helicopters in Israel and Boston Executive Helicopters in Norwood, Mass.
The company operates an Aerospatiale AStar and TwinStar in Israel, and an AStar at Norwood Memorial Airport serving the U.S. Northeast. A TwinStar is scheduled to join the U.S. business soon.
Seeing a need for on-demand business transportation in two specific locations, data-storage entrepreneur and pilot Moshe Yanai is now in operation with his Boston Executive Helicopters in Norwood, Mass., and Tel Aviv Executive Helicopters in Israel.
The Israeli ministry of tourism announced plans for the construction of a new international airport scheduled to open in 2014. Located in Timna, near the southern seaside resort town of Eilat, the new $422 million facility will replace two existing airports in the region and will offer a light rail system directly into Eilat.
In defense terms, few would question the proposition that the state of Israel punches above its weight. And the same could well be said of its defense companies. Take Rafael, for example.
“I am running a boutique [defense company], we’re not Northrop Grumman,” Rafael’s chairman Ilan Biran told AIN, pointing out that most of its activities are confined to research and development and low-rate-of-production programs.
Israel has agreed to acquire 20 Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighters (JSFs), despite U.S. reluctance to permit their modification with Israeli-designed equipment. Recent talks in Washington between Israel Defense Minister Ehud Barak and U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates confirmed a compromise that was first revealed at the Farnborough airshow.
Israel’s latest remote-sensing satellite, Ofeq-9, was successfully placed in orbit on June 22 by an Israel Aerospace Industries Shavit vehicle launched from Palmachim Air Force Base, near the cities of Rishon LeZion and Yavne. Three days later the IAI-built satellite began transmitting its first high-resolution images.
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