Sparrow (target missile)

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The Sparrow (Hebrew: אנקור‎, pronounced [ankor]) target missile is an Israeli medium-range air-launched ballistic missile produced by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.[1] The missile is currently used as a target missile to test the Arrow anti-ballistic missile system.[2][3][4] The missile has a modular warhead section and is capable of carrying a high-explosive warhead.[5]


There are three versions of the missile: Black Sparrow, Blue Sparrow, and Silver Sparrow.[5] The Silver Sparrow version is designed to simulate Iranian Shahab-3 class ballistic missiles with a 1,500-2,000 km range.[5][6]

The Silver Sparrow version was first tested on September 2, 2013.[7] The launch from the Mediterranean was detected by a Russian ballistic missile early warning radar at Armavir,[8][9] followed by Israeli acknowledgement of the test over an hour later.[7]

Another reported test took place out on September 9, 2014 with a Sparrow missile fired from the central part of the Mediterranean, being detected by the Armavir Radar Station.[10]


  1. ^ Daniel Estrin (September 3, 2013). "Israel and US test Sparrow missile in Mediterranean". Christian Science Monitor. Associated Press. 
  2. ^ Jim Miklaszewski, Courtney Kube and Alastair Jamieson (September 3, 2013). "Amid Syria tension, Israel test-fires missile over Mediterranean Sea". NBC News. 
  3. ^ ""Black Sparrow" Target Missile". Arrow Weapon System. Israel Ministry of Defense. Retrieved 2013-09-05. 
  4. ^ Joshua Mitnick (September 3, 2013). "US-Israel missile test as Syria war tensions rise (+video)". Christian Science Monitor. 
  5. ^ a b c "Israel Tests a new Target Missile Simulating Iranian Shihab 3 Missiles". Defense Update. September 3, 2013. 
  6. ^ Alon Ben-David (September 9, 2013). "Israeli Missile Test Triggers Russian Warning System". Aviation Week & Space Technology. 
  7. ^ a b Alisa Odenheimer & Calev Ben-David (September 3, 2013). "Israel Carried Out Test Missile Launch: Defense Ministry". Bloomberg. 
  8. ^ F. MICHAEL MALOOF (September 10, 2013). "Russia went on war alert over missile test". WND. 
  9. ^ Scott Rose (Sep 3, 2013). "Russia Detected Missiles Launched in Mediterranean, RIA Says". Bloomberg. 
  10. ^ "Joint US-Israeli missile test over Mediterranean picked up by Russian radar". RT. September 9, 2014.