Second reserve battery for Israel's 'Iron Dome' becomes operational

By Ryan Maass  |  Dec. 14, 2015 at 4:56 PM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- The Israeli military has qualified a second reserve battery to support Israel's "Iron Dome" missile interception system.

The second reserve battery is the first to meet the new systems upgrade, featuring new software blocks. Israel plans to upgrade the new block to all Iron Dome System parts by May 2016, according to the Israeli Air Force.

"The world of 'Iron Dome' is in continuous evolution," Aerial Defense Division Commander Brig. Gen. Zvika Haimovich said in a statement. "The system has changed and progressed in its ability to deal with double the targets and can deal with multiple aerial defense missions".

Upgrades to the country's missile defense system comes about a year after the rapid deployment of reserve battery troops during Operation Protective Edge, where the system intercepted over 700 munitions launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel. Reservists received no special training prior to the operation.

Israeli defense officials say updates to the Iron Dome will make the defense system twice as formidable as it has been before, which they say is needed to meet future threats.

"In another world, we could have postponed the system upgrade to a year from now, but our enemies are working, so we must continue to better our readiness," Haimovich added. "The world of 'Iron Dome' is in continuous evolution and part of you have accompanied 'Iron Dome' from the beginning, sitting in the battery and feeling that it's another world."

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Topics: Gaza, Iron Dome
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