Israel tested on Tuesday a new rocket system that is part of its developing defense program.

Israel tested and launched a rocket-propulsion system from a military base in central Israel on Tuesday morning, the Defense Ministry confirmed in a statement.

Many civilians in the area were surprised and startled by the launch that they witnessed.

The system is reportedly meant to propel ballistic missiles capable of launching satellites into space.

“The test was planned by the Defense Ministry in advance and was executed as planned,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement. No further details were provided on the experiment.

Ynet reports that the test may have been related to Israel’s Jericho long-range ballistic missile system. The Jericho III, its most advanced version, has a range of up to 6,800 miles and can carry a warhead of up to one ton.

The Ministry of Defense announced in April that its latest missile interceptor system, known as David’s Sling, will likely become operational in the near future, having successfully passed a series of tests.

David’s Sling was created to intercept short- and medium-range missiles and rockets, joining the Iron Dome and other systems in providing another layer of protection against ballistic projectiles.

Once it passes a final set of tests, the system will be declared operational in the coming months and will be turned over to the Israel Air Force (IAF), which will be entrusted with its operation.

By: United with Israel Staff