The "Trophy" active protection system for tanks was tested during the first week of regimental exercises by 401 Brigade. It had been previously tested, and provided specific feedback, in controlled environments, but this trial was conducted by the 9th Battalion of the Armored Corps in areas of the Golan Heights.
"Trophy" is the fruit of a joint development by Rafael, Elta and the American company General Dynamics. It identifies, with special sensors, threats directed against the tank, such as anti-tank rockets and missiles, and fires a special charge to neutralize them.
Since 2005, when the system was first was presented, industry has been working on its service introduction by IDF armored divisions, with the main objective of fitting it to Merkava 4 main battle tanks.
The first combined company exercise using the system recently took place with 9 Battalion. During the exercise, soldiers learned how to respond to environmental stimuli, such as emissions of smoke from other tanks, or other heat sources.
"Thanks to Windbreaker we have the ability to fight more effectively, faster and more securely than ever before," said Lt. Col. Haim Ido, deputy commander of 401 Brigade. "In this respect, it certainly has proven itself as an exercise area."
However, stressed Lt. Col. Ido, the system cannot human eyes. "The system does not change the way soldiers must act and behave inside the tank.”