Safety concerns nix test of Israel’s Arrow 3 missile defense system


(Israel Hayom/Exclusive to An interception test of Israel’s Arrow 3 ballistic missile defense system that had been scheduled for Monday was cancelled at the last minute due to safety concerns, after the target missile was identified as not meeting the safety standards for the test.

The Israel Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency conduct an Arrow 3 system test in January 2014. Credit: U.S. Missile Defense Agency. 

Arrow 3 is the upper tier Israel’s three-pronged air defense system. Monday’s test would have evaluated the system’s ability to intercept the type of long-range ballistic missiles that Iran is developing, which feature warheads that split apart in midair as well as greater accuracy and range than existing ballistic missiles.

Yedioth Ahronoth reported that the target missile, a Sparrow model manufactured by Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems for tests of the Arrow 3 system, did not respond as expected when it was launched from the Israeli Air Force’s Palmachim base north of Ashdod.

Moshe Fattal, head of the Israeli Defense Ministry’s Missile Defense Organization, told Israel’s Channel 2 that “during tests, safety is paramount, and therefore the test was stopped at an early stage because the target missile, which resembles [an Iranian] ballistic missile did not meet the pre-established criteria.”

Posted on December 4, 2017 .