US Army plans to purchase Iron Dome weapons

The United States Army announced Wednesday they plan to purchase the Iron Dome weapons system that Israel has been using since 2011.

“The Iron Dome will be assessed and experimented as a system that is currently available to protect deployed U.S. military service members against a wide variety of indirect fire threats and aerial threats,” US Army Col. Patrick Seiber said in a statement.

“While Iron Dome has been in operational use by the Israeli Air Force since 2011 and proven effective in combat, it should be noted that the U.S. Army will assess a variety of options for its long-term IFPC solution,” the statement continued.

“No decisions have been made regarding the fielding or experimentation of Iron Dome in specific theaters,” Seiber added.

The name Iron Dome evokes an image of a protective bubble over a city. In practice, the system targets incoming rockets and fires an interceptor missile to destroy them in the air. Each battery has a firing-control radar to identify targets. It also has a portable missile launcher. The system is easily transportable, with just a few hours needed to relocate and set up.

The system was initial developed by Israel’s defense technology company Rafael, but the system has since been heavily sponsored by the United States.