Jerusalem: A naval version of Israel’s Iron Dome passed a series of tests, taking the C-Dome defence system one step closer to becoming operational, Israel’s Defence Ministry announced on Monday.
Installed on the Israeli Navy’s Saar 6 “Magen” corvettes, the system correctly identified and successfully intercepted rockets, cruise missiles and aerial drones, all representing potential threats to Israel’s offshore natural gas fields.
“The C-Dome system constitutes a significant leap forward in our defense capabilities, and ensures the Israeli defense establishment’s superiority and operational capabilities in the face of growing threats in the maritime arena,” said Defense Minister Yoav Gallant.
“The system’s naval adaptation is part of our advanced multi-tier air and missile defence system. I would like to express my great appreciation to the Directorate for Defense R&D, the IDF, and Rafael, for turning a tech vision into reality – developing operational capabilities in the field,” he added.
Israel’s multi-tier air and missile defence array consists of four operational defence tiers: Iron Dome, David’s Sling, Arrow 2, and Arrow 3. The development of these systems is spearheaded by the Defence Research and Development Directorate (DDR&D), with the Haifa-based Rafael Advanced Defence Systems serving as the primary contractor and developer.
“The campaign’s success further strengthens our confidence in the defence systems and their ability to protect extensive areas as well as the State of Israel’s strategic assets on land and at sea,” said Brig. Gen. (res.) Dr Daniel Gold, who heads the DDR&D.
Hezbollah has threatened to attack Israeli gas fields and has even developed a naval unit with Iranian assistance.
During the 2006 war in Lebanon, Hezbollah fired a Chinese-made C-701 anti-ship missile at the Hanit, an Israeli Navy corvette, damaging the ship.
Since then, Hezbollah is believed to have acquired more advanced Russian and Chinese anti-ship missiles with Iranian assistance.
In June 2022, Israel intercepted unarmed Hezbollah drones on their way to Israel’s Karish gas field. The move was regarded as a signal by Hezbollah against Israeli drilling there.