Israel’s state owned Rafael Advanced Defense Systems unveiled a sea based version of its Iron Dome missile defense systems called “C-Dome” (pun probably intended) at the Euronaval conference near Paris.
The whole world knows all about Iron Dome by now, after it was utilized by the Israeli military to great success in defending against missiles launched out of Gaza by Hamas at Israeli cities during last summer’s conflict. The Israeli Defense Forces boasted that the Iron Dome had an 85% success rate in that conflict, shooting down a total of 735 rockets. It was able to do so because the system can pinpoint exactly where an incoming missile is headed and intercept the missile ahead in its path.
This task should be easier for naval vessels at sea. On land an incoming missile could be targeted anywhere. But at sea a ship knows that it is the target and therefore already knows where each missile is headed.
Rafael’s new C-Dome was developed to protect naval vessels at sea from all manner of airborne threats, including missiles and unmanned drones. The system takes advantage of a dhip’d radar system which detects an incoming threat and can fire up to one heat tracking missile per second. It can cover a range of 360 degrees.
The program’s director Ari Sacher told the Associated Press, “C-dome offers something that is not out there yet, a small footprint and the capability to engage multiple targets and saturation threats. And it’s based on the only system in the world that has more than 1, 000 intercepts, ” said. “We can protect the ship from every direction at the same time. Most systems out there can’t do that.”
But navies and militaries will not be the only ones looking to acquire a C-Dome from Rafael.
As Israeli reserve Navy Captain Meir (he omitted his last name for security reasons) a Rafael business development director for naval warfare systems told AP, “The most strategic sites for the future right now will be gas platforms and oil platforms. You have to secure them from missiles; Missiles that will be from terror organizations, from mother boats, from enemy countries, from drones — or any other aerial threat.”