Israel to Develop Arrow-4 with the U.S

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Israel to Develop Arrow-4 with the U.S
IAI, Israel MOD and the U.S. MDA announce the development of Arrow-4
The Israel Missile Defence Organization (IMDO) and the U.S. Missile Defence Agency (MDA) have started developing the Arrow-4 weapon system. Arrow-4 is a next-generation endo-exoatmospheric interceptor missile. Currently, Arrow weapon system comprises Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 interceptors and Arrow-4 will replace the Arrow-2 within the next several years.


Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz announced that a new anti-ballistic air defence system would be developed. Gants said, “The development of Arrow-4 together with our American partners will result in a technological and operational leap forward, preparing us for the future battlefield and evolving threats in the Middle East and beyond. I congratulate the Israel Missile Defence Organization, which is currently marking its 30th anniversary, as well as the U.S. Missile Defence Agency and Israeli defence industries, for making Israel’s home front safe.”

Israel to Develop Arrow-4 with the U.S

(Copyright IAI)

The Israel Missile Defence Organization (IMDO), in the Directorate of Defence R&D (MAFAT) of the Israel Ministry of Defence, and the U.S. Missile Defence Agency (MDA), have commenced the development of the Arrow-4 system. Arrow-4 will be the next generation of endo-exoatmospheric interceptors in the Arrow weapon system, consisting of Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 interceptors.

Arrow-4 will be an advanced, innovative interceptor missile with enhanced capabilities. It will address a wide range of evolving threats in the region and will replace the Arrow-2 interceptors over the next decades. Its development is led by the IMDO and the U.S. MDA, with IAI as the prime contractor for developing and producing the system and its interceptors.

Head of the Israel Missile Defence Organization, Moshe Patel: “We are starting the development of the Arrow-4 system at a symbolic time- 30 years after the gulf war, which led to the establishment of the IMDO and the joint missile defence program with our American partners. Over the last three decades, we have developed one of the most advanced missile defence arrays globally, built of four layers with demonstrated capabilities. These capabilities are being constantly improved against emerging threats. Arrow-4 will have unprecedented flight and interception capabilities, ensuring the security of the State of Israel.”

The Arrow Weapon System is a major element of Israel’s multi-layered missile defence array. It includes radar systems developed and produced by the IAI subsidiary, Elta. It also includes a BMC system developed by Elbit Systems and a Launch Array, including MLM's interceptors (a subsidiary of IAI). Defence industries Rafael and Tomer are also involved in the development and production of the Arrow interceptor. Arrow-2 is operational since the year 2000, providing endo-exoatmospheric defence. Arrow-3, an exoatmospheric missile defence system, was delivered for operational use in 2017. It serves as the upper layer of Israel’s multi-tier missile defence array.

In January 2019, IMDO and US MDA tested the advanced Arrow 3 missile defence system from the Palmachim air base in central Israel.

Israel’s Missile Defence Organization (IMDO) is a division within the Directorate of Defence Research and Development (DDR&D) at Israel’s Ministry of Defence. IMDO is responsible for developing, managing, and improvingIsrael’s active defencesystems,including interceptors, launchers, radars, command andcontrol systems, network connectivity, and more. Today, Israel is protected by a multi-layered defence array, including the Arrow-2, Arrow-3, David’s Sling, and Iron Dome active defence systems. Together, they defend Israelagainst various airborne threats.


On May 6th, 1985,Israel and the United Statessigned a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop a missile defence system against long-range threats. A year later, the decision was made to develop an interception system adapted to Israel’s unique security needs,leading to the launchof theArrow weapon system's development program.

The IMDO was established in 1991 following the First Gulf War with variousdepartments responsible for the development, production and budgeting of various programs. Several yearsfollowing the establishment of the IMDO, on November 29th, 1998, the first Arrow-2 system was transferred to the Israeli Air Force (IAF). In November 2002, the placement of two batteries was completed.

Many of theIMDO’sinitiatives are carried out in close collaboration with the United States Missile Defence Agency (MDA) and receive joint funding. The relationship between these two organizationsalso translates into the cooperation betweenIsraeli and American defence industries, which serve as keycontributors to the defence array's development and production processes.

Iron Dome:


The Iron Domeis aninnovative, mobile systemthat defends the stateagainst short-range rockets. It iscapable ofsuccessfully handling multiple incoming threats simultaneously. Furthermore, the Iron Dome is the world’s first missile defence system developed to tackle the threat of short-range rockets and UAVs.

Development of the Iron Dome was launched in 2007, and the system became operational in March 2011. Shortly thereafter, on April 7th, 2011, it performed its first operational interception of a Grad rocket fired from the Gaza Stripat the Israeli city of Ashkelon. Since then, the Iron Dome’s capabilities have beentested consistently,and the system has prevented countless rockets fromhitting Israelicommunities. During Operation Pillar of Defence in 2012 and Operation Protective Edge in 2014, theIron Dome’s success rate reached 90%, and its abilities only continue toimprove with time.As a result, in 2012, theIron Dome was awarded the prestigious Israel Defence Prize.

The United States was apartner in developing the Iron Dome system and continues to develop the system with Israel today. IMDO leads the Iron Dome development, with Rafael Advanced Defence Systems as the main contractor, together with Elta of the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and mPrest of Rafael.

MMR Radar Detection and Fire Control: The MMR Radar detects the rocket’s routes over Iron Dome batteries.

Command and Control Centre:The command and control centre analyses rockets' trajectory and their estimated landingarea toeffectively intercept the target. The system was developed by mPrest.

Launcher:The interceptor receives an order to operate from the command and control unit.

David’s Sling:


The David’s Sling is an innovative, defensive solution for tackling large calibre rockets, short-range ballistic missiles and developingthreats. Its system is designed to strike the target directly. David’s Sling significantly strengthens Israel’s aerial defence strategy. It is a central factor in Israel’s multi-tiered defence array, providing additional protection against short and medium-range threats andcomplementing theArrow's capabilities and the Iron Dome systems.

Development of David’s Sling began in 2006. In 2016, David’s Sling was transferred to the Israeli Air Force and in April 2017 was declared operationalfollowing a series of tests.

David’s Sling was awarded the Technology Pioneer Award at the 2017 Multinational Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) Conference in Boston, Massachusetts, to recognise achievements in Lower-Tier Ballistic Missiles and Cruise Missile Defence.

David’s Sling Weapon System was developed as a result of the cooperation between the U.S. and Israel. The system's primary contractor is Rafael Advanced Defence Systems, with Raytheon MissileSystems as a sub-contractor. Elta, a subsidiary of IAI, develop the MMR. TheBMC, known as the Golden Almond, is developed by Elisra, an Elbit subsidiary.

Golden Almond (Command and ControlCentre):The Golden Almond, the David’s Slingcommand and control centre, provides threat assessment, planning and control for an interception.

MMR (Radar System):The MMR radar system is used to detect, identify, and track airborne threats.

David’s Sling Interceptor:David’s Sling interceptor consists of two stages: front and rear steering systemsthat enableeffective performance. Rafael and Raytheon jointly produce the interceptor.


Development of the Arrow system accelerated in 1991 following IMDO’s establishment and due to the firing of Scud missiles onto Israel during the First Gulf War. On November 29th, 1998, the first Arrow-2 system wastransferred to the Israeli Air Force (IAF),and in November 2002, the placement of two batteries was completed.

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is the primary contractor for the development of the Arrow System.

Golden Citron (Command and ControlCentre):It is linked to IAF and the IDF Homefront Command systems and can interface with external systems.It was developed and manufactured by Elisra, an IAI subsidiary.

Green Pineand Super Green Pine (Radar System):The Green Pine Radar System is used to detect, identify, and track ballistic missiles with long-range capabilities. The Super Green Pine is an enhanced version of the Green Pine radar system. Both systems are developed and manufactured by Elta, an IAI subsidiary.

Interceptor:The Arrow-2 is equipped with an operational, advanced interceptor system, defined by its two-stage capability and impressive manoeuvrability. The interceptor was developed and manufactured by IAI’s MLM division.


Israel to Develop Arrow-4 with the U.S

Arrow-3 serves as the top layer of Israel’s defence array. The Arrow-3 system’s capabilities enable more extended range, higher altitude (exoatmospheric), and more precise ballistic missile engagements.

Development of the Arrow is a joint Israeli-American project, and the collaboration of the MDAproved invaluable to its success. The primary contractor for the integration and development of the Arrow Weapon System is MLM of IAI. TheElisra Company, a subsidiary of Elbit systems, developed the BMC system. Boeing, Tomer and Rafael are the main subcontractors for the development and integration of the interceptor. Rafael is the company responsible for the development ofvariouscomponents of the weapon system.

On January 18th, 2017, IMDO transferred the operational Arrow-3to the Israeli Air Force (IAF), Aerial Defence Array, and in the same year, the system was awarded the Israel Defence Award.

In July 2019, the IMDO and the U.S. MDA completed a series of tests of the Arrow 3 weapon system in Alaska. They demonstrated hit-to-kill interceptions of high altitude, exoatmospheric targets.

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