Point-defence (or point-defense; see spelling differences) is the defence of a single object or a limited area, e.g. a ship, building or an airfield, now usually against air attacks and guided missiles. Point-defence weapons have a smaller range in contrast to area-defence systems and are placed near or on the object to be protected.
Point-defence may include:
- short-ranged interceptor aircraft
- Close-in weapon systems on ships
- land-based short-ranged anti-aircraft guns or surface-to-air missile systems
- Active protection systems on tanks or other armoured fighting vehicles
Coastal artillery to protect harbours is similar conceptually, but is generally not classified as point-defence. Similarly, passive systems—electronic countermeasures, decoys, chaff, flares, barrage balloons—are not considered point-defence.
- Bachem Ba 349 Natter – vertical take-off rocket powered manned interceptor (prototypes only)
- Messerschmitt Me 163 – WWII era German rocket powered interceptor.
- Goalkeeper CIWS – Gun CIWS in current service by the Dutch navy.
- Kashtan CIWS – Gun-Missile CIWS in current service by the Russian navy.
- RIM-116 RAM – Missile CIWS in current use by the US Navy.
- Type 730 – in current use by the Chinese Navy.
- Arena APS – a Russian point defence system for individual armoured vehicles.
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