Israel has successfully tested the new “Iron Beam” laser interception system, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said.
“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,” Bennett wrote on Twitter when announcing the test.
“It may sound like science fiction, but it’s real,” Bennett wrote.
Footage of the successful tests shows the system firing beams at a rocket, a mortar, and a drone in Israel’s Negev desert.
The Iron Beam uses laser beams to super-heat and, in turn, destroy airborne targets.
The new system will not replace the iconic Iron Dome defense system or any of Israel’s other aerial defenses, the country’s Defense Ministry said. Instead, the Iron Beam will bolster the Iron Dome and other systems, shooting down smaller projectiles while the missile-based systems target larger ones.