The first trials of a new laser anti-missile system developed by Israel and the United States have proven successful.
The Nautilus system, which was tested twice last week at the White Sands missile range in New Mexico, succeeded at shooting down both armed and unarmed missiles.
The system is designed to intercept short-range missiles, including the Katyusha rocket, which fundamentalist terror groups in Lebanon have repeatedly fired at targets in northern Israel in recent years.
The Nautilus spots a rocket in midair, then fires a laser that destroys the rocket before it hits its target.
A spokesman for the U.S. Army praised the Nautilus tests, adding that the system could also be used for long-range missiles and bombs dropped by aircraft.
Israel’s Defense Ministry welcomed the tests as an impressive technological achievement, but stressed that development of the system is still in its early stages.
The successful trials are expected to result in an expanded budget for further developing the system.