- Associated Press - Sunday, January 19, 2014

JERUSALEM (AP) - A state-owned Israeli arms company says it will unveil a new laser-defense system next month that will be capable of shooting down short-range rockets and mortar fire.

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. says the “Iron Beam” system will use a “directed high energy laser beam” to intercept incoming projectiles fired from short distances. The system is to be displayed at the Singapore Air Show next month and is expected to be operational next year.

Once deployed, Iron Beam would add another element of protection to Israel’s multilayered missile defense system.

Israel is developing a new generation of its “Arrow” system to intercept long-range ballistic missiles in space. It also is developing a system to intercept medium-range missiles and has deployed “Iron Dome,” which shoots down short-range rockets.

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