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Rafael wants to launch satellites from a fighter jet

The space war between Israel Aerospace Industries and Rafael

By: Amnon Barzilai 
 The two leading defense industries in Israel - the aerospace industry
(TAA) and the Weapons Development Authority (Raphael) have recently been filled with spirit
battle. Raphael comes up with a revolutionary idea to launch tiny satellites into space
Using the F-15 fighter jet, the IAA administration is furious about this.

CEO of the Mbat plant of the Aerospace Industry - where satellites are manufactured
"Ofek" intelligence - Yitzhak Nissen, and the deputy director general of the ETA Ovadia
Harari, warned in internal discussions about Rafael's plan. they
They claim that in Israel - where they fight for every engineer and scientist - the establishment of a center
Additional knowledge for satellites is considered a luxury. Therefore, they require a therapist
to give up its plans and share with the IEA its knowledge in developing satellites

To strengthen its position, the TA claims that the dispute is where the knowledge center will be located
Israeli for the development and production of satellites, was already decided in 1983. Then Minister
security, Moshe Arens that the TAA - and not Raphael - will be the one to produce the
Israel's intelligence and communication satellites. Since the decision of Arens have been produced
At the "Ofek" satellite factory and the "Amos" communication satellite.

Rafael's CEO, Giora Shelgi, is determined to advance the satellite project.
He draws encouragement from the fact that the company, for the first time in its history, completed the
Its activity for the year 2000 was a profit of one million NIS.
As far as is known, there is no plan in the world to develop satellites that will be launched from airplanes
battle. At the TA, doubts are revealed about the challenge Rafael has set for herself. "which
It was possible to build satellites smaller than Ofek's model, we were
We do it ourselves", says a key source in the defense industries who was
A partner in the construction of satellites. The same factor also doubts whether a fighter plane
can launch a satellite into space. According to him, there is no lightweight launcher in the world that can
carry a satellite to the heights necessary to put it into orbit around it
to the earth

Today's struggle sets the two defense industries back twenty years
- To the competition for the development of Israel's intelligence satellites.

In 1979, the decision was made at TEA to develop small satellites weighing
About 250 kg. The director of the MLM factory in those days, Dov Raviv ("Father of the Arrow"),
He proposed, following the development of the "Shavit" satellite launcher, to also produce a satellite.
Raviv believed that the three powerful engines of "Shavit" are strong enough
To put a satellite into orbit around the earth at an altitude of about 480
km. The "comet", according to foreign publications, is a derivative of a missile
The Ground-Ground (TKK) "Jericho". Mbat factory, under the management of Shmuel
Alcon, pick up the glove.

The project was headed by Dr. Moshe Barlev, who headed the development field of
Future missiles. In 1982, the TA submitted to the Development and Means Administration
Lahima (MAPAT) in the Ministry of Defense a combined proposal of its two plants - MLM
and MBT - for the development of the launcher and the satellite.

Rafael was ahead of the TEA in the space programs. In his book "Raphael", writes
Its founder is Monia Mardor, because as early as 1964, Dr. Yonatan Mas went to the USA
So that you will assist in setting up a station to track satellites in Israel. at the end
In the 70s, almost at the same time as the programs at TAA, a group was formed in Raphael
which included Mass, Zvi Ever and Dr. Marcel Klein who offered to produce a satellite.
Klein was appointed head of the project.

Until the Lebanon War, Rafael believed that the Ministry of Defense would prefer her proposal. but
The resignation of Minister Ariel Sharon and the appointment of Moshe Arens, as well as his appointment
To the CEO of General (Res.) Menachem Marom, they changed the picture. Exchange
The men and the prolongation of the competition allowed TEA to organize better. the company
She found a "foreign client" who was willing to participate in the financing of the project. That's the approach
The TAA offer is 50% cheaper than Rafael's. Arens preferred the IAA
For economic reasons, and at the beginning of 1983 it was decided that the TAA would build the satellites.

The dispute in 2001 is more complex. TAA already has a proven ability
in the independent development of satellites and launchers. Rafael, on the other hand, emphasizes
her contribution to the development of the three-stage satellite launcher (engines) of
The "comet". Although the IAA developed the first engine and the military industry the
The second engine, but Raphael is proud of the development of the third engine. This is because
that while the first two engines bring the "comet" to a speed of 3
km per second, the third engine adds 5 km per second to the missile's acceleration
- The added speed that allows the "comet" to penetrate the atmospheric layer
and reach the desired lap route.

Rafael gained her knowledge in the field of launching from developing a rich variety of
Powerful missiles. The last of which he launched the "black anchor" which is
A target in the experimental exercises of the Arrow interceptor missile. Unlike Tilly
Air-to-ground designed to hit ground targets, the launched "Black Anchor".
From a fighter plane, it is required to soar to heights of many tens of kilometers. In this way
"Black Anchor" is trying the power of the "Arrow" missile to fuel other missiles
Ballistics fired at Israel.

So it turns out that thanks to the cooperation with the IAA in the "Hatz" experiments, there is an outbreak
Raphael Derech in the field of launches. As in TEA, finding a solution in the field
The launch is Raphael's key to breaking into space. The development of the tiny satellite
will be the next step.
Arens: Any decision, on its merits
The former Minister of Defense, Moshe Arens, responds to the claim as if he had decided in 1983
Where will the Israeli knowledge center for the development and production of satellites be located. "The decision
Mine regarding the development of the launcher and the satellite we were thinking of attaching to it was
spotty There was never any intention to build a doctrine, universal,
which will last 30-20 years, according to which only the Israel Defense Forces will build satellites. No one
He thought in the early 80s that a number of satellites would be built. Any decision on development
Satellites in the future should be examined on the merits of the matter."

The Ministry of Defense states that Arens' decision from 1983 has nothing to do with it
A binding document. Nor is there any decision that limits the office from making decisions
futurity in the field of satellite development.'
* Hidan was part of the IOL portal from the Haaretz group until 2002

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