An Israeli warship shot down an enemy threat in the Red Sea with a new air-defense weapon for the first time

  • An Israeli warship downed a drone this week by firing a new air-defense system for the first time.

  • The IDF confirmed the "first operational interception" of its C-Dome defense system.

  • The C-Dome is the naval version of the Iron Dome and is outfitted on the Sa'ar 6-class corvette.

An Israeli warship shot down an enemy drone this week by firing a new naval air-defense weapon, marking the system's first-ever operational interception.

The Israel Defense Forces, or IDF, confirmed on Tuesday that a Sa'ar 6-class corvette missile ship "successfully intercepted" a drone above the Red Sea, near the southern city of Eilat, during the previous night. It hailed the engagement as the "first operational interception" by the warship's C-Dome defense system.

"IDF troops in the area operated in cooperation with the IAF Aerial Control Unit and the Sa'ar 6-class corvette," Israel's military said in a Tuesday statement posted to the Telegram messaging platform, which also included footage of the interception.

The C-Dome is the naval version of Israel's Iron Dome, the most well-known component of Israel's sophisticated air-defense network. The system, which is outfitted on the Israeli Navy's four heavily armed Sa'ar 6-class corvettes, became operational in November 2022.

Archival footage of the C-Dome system in use.
Archival footage of the C-Dome system in use.Israel Defense Forces/Screengrab via Telegram

It can defend against attacks from multiple directions at the same time and uses the same interceptor missiles — the Tamir — as the Iron Dome system, according to Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, which manufactures both weapons.

The company says the C-Dome has an "exceptionally high kill probability," although it's unclear exactly how accurate it actually is (the Iron Dome has a reported success rate of around 90%).

Monday's incident involving the C-Dome marked the latest attack on Eilat to since Hamas' Oct. 7 massacre, which then triggered the Israeli invasion of the Gaza Strip. Last week, the IDF blamed Iran for a drone that hit a naval base in the Red Sea port city, causing some damage to infrastructure.

A drone is intercepted by Israel's C-Dome system.
A drone is intercepted by Israel's C-Dome system.Israel Defense Forces/Screengrab via Telegram

A military spokesperson said that the IDF would bolster its defenses in the area in response to attacks. However, Israeli warships have been present in the area for months now as Iran-backed militia groups, like the Houthis in Yemen, stage missiles and drone attacks in the region.

"In accordance with the situational assessment since the beginning of the war, IDF missile boats including Sa'ar 6-class corvettes were positioned in the Red Sea," the IDF said Tuesday on Telegram. "The Israeli Navy is deployed in the area of the Red Sea and has both the defensive and offensive capabilities to engage with regional threats."

Toward the other end of the Red Sea, meanwhile, US and allied warships have been defending key international shipping lanes from relentless Houthi attacks since November. American forces have also hammered the militants with preemptive strikes against positions in Yemen.

Read the original article on Business Insider