The military has released video of a test in which the Iron Dome antimissile system shot down a rocket at sea from a missile boat.
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A senior navy officer said the test, which took place three months ago, was a success.
In December, senior officers told Haaretz that the military planned to install Iron Dome on missile boats to protect Israel’s natural-gas drilling platforms in the Mediterranean Sea.
The test three months ago included the firing of three rockets from 40 kilometers away. The interception was planned for a high enough altitude to prevent shrapnel from endangering the drilling platforms.
The installation of Iron Dome on ships is an interim solution until Sa’ar 6 missile boats arrive from Germany in 2019. These ships have been acquired in a deal valued at 430 million euros.
Currently the navy’s Sa’ar 5 missile boats are equipped with Barak 1 missiles. The Sa’ar 6 ships will boast advanced Barak 8 interceptors, which can also stop cruise missiles, including the Russian P-800 Yakhont.
“There are Yakhonts and other missiles in the northern sector,” the navy officer said. “A Yakhont reaches a drilling platform, and it doesn’t matter where they fired it from, whether from Lebanon or Syria.”
Later this year, the Israel Defense Forces will test the Barak 8, he added.
In April 2011, Iron Dome intercepted a Grad missile heading from the Gaza Strip for the first time.
It has been a key defensive weapon for Israel in its military operations against Hamas and its allies in Gaza, shooting down Grads both during Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012 and Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014.