Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has announced the successful testing of the new Iron Beam laser interception system, which will soon be part of Israel’s global Iron Dome air defense system.

“Israel has successfully tested a new laser interception system Iron Beam. This is the world’s first energy-based weapons system that uses a laser to shoot down incoming UAVs, rockets & mortars at a cost of $3.50 per shot. It may sound like science fiction, but it’s real,” the politician wrote on Twitter.

The Iron Beam system was announced in 2014. It was developed by the state-owned company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, one of the main developers of weapons for the Israel Defense Forces, which created the famous Iron Dome.

The Iron Beam mobile battery consists of an air defense radar, a control unit, and two high-energy lasers. Power of laser guns – 100-150 kW. Iron Beam has an effective range of up to 7 km and can destroy missiles, UAVs or mortars in about four seconds.

Iron Beam – new Israeli laser-based air defense system

Although according to Naftali Bennett the cost of one shot of Iron Beam is $3.50, it’s just the cost of energy, if you take into account maintenance, depreciation and so on, the cost of one interception will increase to $2000, which is still much less than the cost of launching an air defense missile. which costs about $100,000 – 150,000 for interception.

In February 2022, Israel announced that Israel Defense Forces would begin operational use of laser weapons within a year. However, it later became clear that it would take several years to fully deploy Iron Beam.