The Israeli Air Force and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems recently completed a successful series of tests of the David’s Sling medium-range air defense system, proving its readiness to counter advanced threats in various combat arenas. According to the Israel’s Ministry of Defense, the David’s Sling faced off against “advanced threats, which expand the system’s capability and significantly improve the air defense layers of the State of Israel. The existing capabilities of the system were tested in a number of challenging scenarios, during Operation “Shield and Arrow”. The David’s Sling successfully made its first real-world interceptions during a recent flareup of violence between Israel and the Palestinian in May.
David’s Sling (Kela David) is an Israel Defense Forces military system being jointly developed by the Israeli defense contractor Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and the American defense contractor Raytheon, designed to intercept enemy planes, drones, tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets and cruise missiles, fired at ranges from 40 to 300 km (25 to 190 mi). The system’s Stunner missile is designed to intercept the newest generation of tactical ballistic missiles at low altitude, such as the Russian Iskander and the Chinese DF-15 using an on-board dual CCD/IR seekers to distinguish between decoys and the actual warhead of the missile, in addition to tracking by Elta EL/M-2084 Active electronically scanned array multi-mode radar.
The multi-stage interceptor consists of a solid-fuel rocket motor booster, followed by an asymmetrical kill vehicle with advanced steering for super-maneuverability during the kill-stage. A three-pulse motor provides additional acceleration and maneuverability during the terminal phase. David’s Sling became operational in April 2017. David’s Sling was meant to bolster the second tier of Israel’s theater missile defense system. The name David’s Sling comes from the biblical story of David and Goliath. It forms one level of Israel’s future multi-tiered missile defense system, which also includes Arrow 2, Arrow 3, Iron Dome, and Iron Beam.
DAVID’s SLING’s advanced, multi-mission interceptor, also known as the Stunner and the SkyCeptor, a joint endeavor of RAFAEL and RAYTHEON provides an affordable, lethal hit-to-kill solution for the huge volume of asymmetric threats. DAVID’S SLING™ system is modular, scalable, and flexible to tailor-fit the area and topology to be defended. The David’s Sling interceptor delivers superior kinematics, maneuverability and lethality by combining novel innovative steering control, multi-pulse propulsion and a next-generation seeker into a lightweight airframe. The Stunner/ SkyCeptor is an advanced multi-mission interceptor designed also for “plug-and-play” insertion into the fielded air and missile defense systems. Integrate easily into a variety of engagement scenarios.