Israeli Air Force Purchasing Rafael 5th Gen. Spike Missiles for Apache Choppers


The Israel Air Force has announced the purchase of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems’ newest precision guided missile SPIKE LR II for its Apache helicopters, Israel Defense reported Monday.

The Spike is a fire-and-forget missile with lock-on before launch and automatic self-guidance. The missile is equipped with an imaging infrared seeker. Its latest version, the SPIKE LR II, first presented at the Paris Air Show last June, is a multipurpose missile, weighing 28 pounds, which can be launched from any SPIKE Launcher. The SPIKE LR II includes two warhead configurations: a Tandem HEAT configuration capable of increasing armor penetration by more than 30%, and a new multipurpose blast warhead.


SPIKE LR II has a range of 3.4 miles when fired from ground launchers, and up to 6 miles when fired from a helicopter. The missile is equipped with an electro-optical seeker that tracks a target using artificial intelligence features.

SPIKE LR II was designed against new modern targets with low signature, time-sensitive characteristics. To counter this SPIKE LR II includes an embedded IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) for missions of third party-target allocation, allowing the firing of the missile to grid target coordinates, including advanced armor and protection systems. The SPIKE LR II is one of the only missiles in the world with an inherent CAPS capability.

Moshe Elazar, Executive Vice President and Head of Rafael’s Land and Naval Systems Division stated that the new missile addresses the complex challenges of the modern battlefield. “The development of the SPIKE LR II is based on Rafael’s vast experience in the development of a wide variety of missiles over the years, and was largely possible due to Rafael’s close cooperation with the users at the IDF and other militaries around the world.”