Israeli Arrow missile makes exo-atmospheric ‘space interception’ of hostile ballistic missile

by | Nov 6, 2023 | Military space, Seradata News, Technology

An Israeli Arrow anti-ballistic missile interceptor made the first ever direct interception of a live ballistic missile in space (above the Karman line 100 km altitude limit). The tracked ballistic missile, apparently aimed at Israel, was allegedly fired by Houthi rebels based in Yemen in support of Palestine’s Hamas organisation – defined as terrorists by western governments. Houthi rebels have been fighting a Saudi-backed regime in Yemen. According to the Jerusalem Post and Aviation Week, the interception was made on 31 August over the Red Sea outside of the Earth’s atmosphere. The Israeli Defence Force noted that it took place “at the most appropriate operational time and location”. The target was the Israeli city of Eilat.

The intercepted ballistic missile has not been formally identified, but Houthi forces are apparently operating a theatre-range missile reminiscent of Iran’s Ghadr and North Korea’s Nodong missiles.

Arrow 3 launch. Courtesy: IDF

Comment by David Todd: The Arrow system was developed by Israel Aerospace Industries working with the Israeli and US defence establishments. This writer was one of the judges who awarded a Flight International prize to the Arrow missile system when it was introduced.

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