Israel Iron Dome explainer
Up in the sky, that’s a rocket arcing over the sky in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon. And see that explosion? That’s the iron dome missile defense system in action.. Intercepting and eliminating the projectile.
It might seem like not much more than a blip in the sky, but take a look at the view at night. Each of those explosions is right here. A thwarted rocket attack.
The Israeli company that developed the iron dome system says the system has destroyed thousands of unguided rockets fired from Gaza and Lebanon into Israel since 2011.
But the iron dome isn’t really a dome. Though it’s meant to create a force field effect. They’re movable batteries, attached to missile launchers that look like this.
And here’s how it works – so first, its radar senses a rocket when it’s getting close. Anywhere from 2.5 to 43 miles away. According to Raytheon – a U.S. defense contractor that helps produce them. Then, the iron dome’s control center kicks into gear – and quickly analyzes whether a rocket will hit populated areas. If it determines the rocket will hit a town or a city, the system will tell a launcher to shoot off a missile that will intercept and destroy it mid-air. The fragments of metal and debris then fall to the ground.
The Israeli defense forces reported that it intercepted more than 95 percent of rockets during an operation last May. Over the last few days, the Israeli military says 4,500 rockets were fired from Gaza, and the Iron Dome has intercepted many.
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