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Israel Using Antimissile Laser Technology on Planes


Israel’s flagship airline, El Al, is reputed to be the safest on the planet. For nearly a decade, its planes have been equipped with antimissile technology that relies on flares to throw missiles off course. Now a government initiative called “Sky Shield” aims to equip El Al, and the country’s two other airlines, with a new generation of antimissile hardware.

·        What new technology are the Israelis using?

The Israeli carriers are turning to the C-Music System — built by, Elbit Systems, an electronics company headquartered in Haifa, Israel.

Installed on the bottom of the plane, C-Music tries to throw off the sensor on a heat-seeking missile by pointing a laser at the weapon’s sensor, drawing it off-course. The equipment consists of thermal cameras that detect and track the missile.

A laser generator on the bottom of the unit points and projects the laser.  The equipment adds about 350 pounds to the aircraft weight. It measures nine feet long, and two feet wide.


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