http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3497563,00.htmlRAFAEL unveils defense system to intercept Hizbullah rockets
Israel's Armament Development Authority displays 'Stunner' interception array designed to combat long-range Hizbullah missiles and 'Iron Dome' defense system against short-range rockets like Qassams to Prime Minister Olmert
Roni Sofer Published: 01.22.08, 19:45 / Israel News
The RAFAEL Armament Development Authority unveiled on Tuesday its newly developed 'Stunner' missile, designed to intercept long-range rocket threats such as the Zelzal and Fajr missiles fired by Hizbullah into Israel during the Second Lebanon War.
The Stunner is part of the 'Magic Wand' rocket defense array and was presented to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert during his visit to the institute. The researchers also introduced Olmert to the 'Iron Dome' system, which is still in its testing phase.
Olmert was briefed on the development status of the two defense systems, the continued enhancement of which was authorized by the government last year. In early 2007 Olmert and then-Defense Minister Amir Peretz sanctioned the creation of the Magic Wand system for rockets fired from a distance of 24-155 miles and the Iron Dome system for rockets fired from a range of 2.5-43 miles (Qassams, Grad and Katyusha missiles).
According to the timetable set by the company, the Iron Dome system will be operational and ready for deployment in southern Israel by early 2010. The cabinet approved the purchase of the interception system several weeks, ago.
RAFAEL directors stressed on Tuesday that contrary to reported claims – at present time there is no laser interception system currently on the market that is capable of solving the Qassam threat.
"I was extremely impressed with what was presented to me and it is evident that there is a monumental effort here to develop systems that, once completed, will protect Israel's citizens," said Olmert.
The prime minister also implored the researchers to speed up the timetable to provide defense for the county's south from the threat of Qassam attacks.