RAFAEL’s Sky Sonic Intercepts Hypersonic Missiles
Israeli defence company Rafael will unveil its most recent anti-hypersonic missile solution at le Bourget.
RAFAEL Advanced Defence Systems Ltd. announced today that it had developed an advanced interceptor named “Sky Sonic” to respond to the growing threat of hypersonic missiles. This equipment will be unveiled for the first time at the Paris Air Show next week.
The Sky Sonic interceptor will intercept hypersonic missiles that travel at ten times the speed of sound. The technical specs are not declared, but it is stated that it has manoeuvrability and high-speed characteristics to perform its mission.
Developing a complete defensive response against hypersonic threats offers several complex issues, including detection and tracking challenges that need a synchronised sensor system capable of adequately identifying and locating the threat throughout its trajectory. Furthermore, good trajectory prediction necessitates an interceptor that can reach the target quickly, reducing the uncertainty associated with the target location. Finally, the interceptor must be highly manoeuvrable and fly on a non-ballistic trajectory to effectively follow and neutralise the hypersonic danger.
According to RAFAEL’s video, the Sky Sonic will be a vertically launched SAM composed of two stages. The missile will gain altitude at the initial phase. The second phase will be activated once the missile reaches a certain altitude. The second missile part, which is small and fast, will target the upcoming hypersonic missile. Whether it will have a warhead or fulfil its mission with a hard kill is unknown. Its manoeuvre capability will be assumed to be higher than the aggressor missile due to its smaller size.