Iron Dome Often Launches Multiple Tamir Interceptors For One Inbound Rocket

This staggering Iron Dome interception video has been picked up and spread hugely virally. It is one of the most impressive multi launch videos we’ve seen.

But everyone is sharing and stating that because the video shows around 15 interceptor launches, that means they were simultaneously engaging with 15 incoming Hamas missiles. This is not usually the case.

The standard practice is to launch two very sophisticated Tamir missiles. These produce the trails you see (in daytime videos) or the rising lights you see in night videos (like the one I posted a couple of days ago). In fact, my night video showed exactly two launched and these exploded pretty close to each other. This was almost certainly to take out one incoming rocket.

If the Iron Dome computers predict a possible impact on a very high value target (say the airport or a dense residential area) the operators of Iron Dome can launch additional interceptors to be sure.

Basically it’s just like the old Atari Missile Command game from my childhood (play here), sometimes you’ll send two interceptions just to be sure!

About Brian of London

Brian of London is not the messiah, he's a very naughty boy. Since making aliyah in 2009, Brian has blogged at Israellycool. Brian's interests include electric cars, world peace and an end to world hunger. Besides blogging here, Brian of London now writes at the Times of Israel. Brian of London also hosted Shire Network News

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  • Jim from Iowa

    Seems to me if memory serves, during the last go round in Gaza (Pillar of Defense) there was a good deal of criticism of Irone Dome by Israelis, including a number of comments posted at this site. As I recall most of the criticism was based on the cost of the system and what was thought to be an unreliable American money stream to support the system long term. I have not heard of any criticism of Iron Dome by Israelis during Operation Protective Edge. Has Israeli public opinion turned this decisively in support of Iron Dome or am I misreading something here?

    • Norman_In_New_York

      The cost-benefits equation proved illusory, since many more Hamas rockets were taken out by air strikes and Iron Dome allows incoming rockets headed for open fields to explode harmlessly. I predict that Iron Dome accuracy will be refined even further so that firing one missile will be sufficient.

  • itna dahij

    Much appreciate the techie explanation Brian. Good to know why so many vapor trails for each explosion puff.

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