THAAD Defense System – First Successful Combat Operational Use

The first of two Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptors is launched during a successful intercept test. The test, conducted by Missile Defense Agency (MDA), Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) Operational Test Agency, Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense, and U.S. Pacific Command, in conjunction with U.S. Army soldiers from the Alpha Battery, 2nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, U.S. Navy sailors aboard the guided missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG-73), and U.S. Air Force airmen from the 613th Air and Operations Center resulted in the intercept of one medium-range ballistic missile target by THAAD, and one medium-range ballistic missile target by Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD). The test, designated Flight Test Operational-01 (FTO-01), stressed the ability of the Aegis BMD and THAAD weapon systems to function in a layered defense architecture and defeat a raid of two near-simultaneous ballistic missile targets

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Following the recent drone attacks on the UAE (United Arab Emirates), the THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) was used for the first time in combat conditions to intercept drones and missiles.

The attacks on January 17, 2022, that killed three people and injured six more, was attributed to a combination of ballistic and cruise missiles, as well as drones launched by the Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The THAAD “brought down a ballistic missile during its first recorded successful operational use, in the hands of the United Arab Emirates,” as reported by THAAD is an American-made anti-ballistic missile defense system designed to shoot down short-, medium-, and intermediate-range ballistic missiles in their terminal phase (descent or reentry) by intercepting with a hit-to-kill approach, that delivers their destructive power by hitting the target at high velocity and do not contain an explosive warhead, according to The American THAAD air defense missile system is in service with the UAE armed forces since 2015. 

Interested in learning more about air and missile defense? Attend IAMD – the Israeli Air and Missile Defense Conference and Exhibition on March 8 at Tel Aviv Expo, pavilion 10.