The US Army’s 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command is deploying Iron Dome missile defense systems to Andersen Air Force Base in Guam for a temporary, experimental deployment.
The deployment is in line with the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, which required the dispatch of the Iron Dome system to an operational theater no later than the end of 2021.
Soldiers and equipment from the 2-43Air Defense Artillery Battalion from Fort Bliss, Texas will deploy in order to fulfill those NDAA requirements, test the capabilities of the system, and further train and refine the deployment capabilities of air defenders.
The army noted that there was currently no plan to conduct a live fire of the system while it is on Guam.
Iron Dome is deploying to Guam after completing the first live-fire test at the White Sands New Mexico (WSMR) test range in August this year.
The trial marked the first time US soldiers intercepted live targets with the Israeli-developed air defense system which was designed to counter very short-range rockets, artillery and mortar threats.
Delivered to the US Army by the Israeli Missile Defense Organization in 2020, Iron Dome has been undergoing a series of acceptance tests and operator training over the past months.
The US Army plans to field two Iron Dome batteries as an interim cruise missile defense solution, until an enduring Indirect Fire Protection Capability (IFPC) Increment 2 (Inc2) system enters service.