Photos from the U.S. Defense Visual Information Distribution Service (DVIDS, formerly the “Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System) show that the Israeli-made Iron Dome mobile all-weather missile defense system has been deployed in Guam. Equipment used for the Iron Dome exercise, Iron Island, arrived in Guam October 19 and was prepared to be moved to its temporary site. Iron Island is designed to gather data on the deployability, sustainment, and integration of Iron Dome into our current missile defense architecture. The two Iron Dome air-and-missile defense batteries it recently purchased as an interim solution for cruise missile defense.
The deployment will test the capabilities of the system and further train and refine the deployment capabilities of air defenders. The U.S. Army has activated two air defense artillery batteries at Fort Bliss, Texas, that will evaluate the Iron Dome system for possible integration into the Army’s air-and missile defense architecture. The Iron Dome batteries will serve as an interim capability to fill a cruise missile defense gap. The change was mandated by Congress while the U.S. Army determines a long-term solution to combat such threats in addition to countering rockets, artillery, mortars and drones.
The U.S. Army took receipt of the first Iron Dome battery in Israel in October 2022. The Fort Bliss-based units are expected to receive one Iron Dome system in December followed by the second in January 2021. To stand up the two batteries, the U.S. Army is converting a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery and realigning resources from the U.S. Army Air Defense Artillery School. Iron Dome has a long track record of operational success in Israel and is produced through a partnership with Israeli-based Rafael and Raytheon. Those companies are making plans to produce Iron Dome systems in the United States .
Iron Dome (Kippat Barzel) is a mobile all-weather air defense system developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries. The system is designed to intercept and destroy short-range rockets and artillery shells fired from distances of 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) to 70 kilometres (43 mi) away and whose trajectory would take them to an Israeli populated area. Iron Dome is part of a multi-tiered missile defense system that Israel was continuing to develop in 2016 to protect the country from threats ranging from mortars to ICBMs and which includes Arrow 2, Arrow 3, Iron Beam, Barak 8 and David’s Sling.