The IAF recently held a final inspection which examined the “David’s Sling” system’s preparedness for operational activity. In a ceremony to be held on April 2, the battalion and system will be announced operational

Hadas Levav

Last week, the “David’s Sling” Battalion underwent an operational preparedness and fitness inspection. In January, a series of tests that examined the advanced version of the system was completed successfully, and now its personnel are waiting for its first operational interception. Lt. Col. Kobi Regev, the Battalion Commander said: “We might operate the system, but our ability to perform our mission depends on other elements in the IAF. The results of the inspection will tell us if the IAF is prepared for the system to become operational”.

“David’s Sling”: On its Way to IOC

Photography: Ministry of Defense

The inspection was held over a three day period, one day as part of a training exercise and two days of routine. Lt. Col. Regev explained that the inspection considered all of the elements the battalion is required to face and tested its ability to execute an operational mission in routine and emergency scenarios. It also tested the professional, operational technical and administrative aspects of the battalion’s performance. “The inspection dealt with mechanisms, literature, procedures and the soldiers’ and commanders’ expertise, which was tested by means of theoretical tests and practical training”.

Integration is the Name of the Game
The “David’s Sling” system was developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems in cooperation with Raytheon, and is designed to provide active defense from medium range missiles. In the future, it will also address other threats such as enemy UAVs.

“David’s Sling”: On its Way to IOC

Photography: Ministry of Defense

In the past years the Aerial Defense Division has formulated an integrative operational concept, which states that each system holds a unique operational advantage and the ability to operate individually, but that they can also coordinate and operate as a whole. The “David’s Sling” system has a central role in this concept. “In the past the ‘Arrow’ system addressed the long range targets, ‘Iron Dome’ the short range targets and their common range was minimal, now, the ‘David’s Sling’ system’s range, between them, changes everything”, explained Lt. Col. Regev. “We want ‘David’s Sling’ to deal with the most challenging and accurate targets and know how to operate with the other weapons systems”.

“David’s Sling”: On its Way to IOC

Photography: Mor Tzidon

The Beginning
In a ceremony to be held on April 2, the battalion and system will be announced operational. “The atmosphere in the battalion is good.  We have confidence in the system and the people who operate it, and the two create a winning combination”, shared Maj. Rafi Dahan, Commander of the Battalion’s Operations Department. “The announcement is the beginning, not the end”, reminded Lt. Col. Yoav. “We will continue advancing, learning and training”.

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