What's new

Rafael subsidiary gets classified clearance to work in US


Jul 10, 2017

Rafael subsidiary gets classified clearance to work in US​

By Jen Judson
Thursday, Mar 3

The Army evaluated Rafael's short-range Spike anti-tank guided missile during the Army Expeditionary Warfighter Experiment in January 2021. (Photo courtesy of Rafael Defense)
WASHINGTON — The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency granted facility clearance to Rafael Systems Global Sustainment, an American subsidiary of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, in February, according to company president and CEO Joseph Anderson.
RSGS is the only US-based subsidiary of Israeli defense company Rafael to receive the clearance, Anderson, told Defense News in a Feb. 28 interview.

Rafael is known for technologies in the realm of missiles, air defense, artificial intelligence, radars, sensors and communications and network capabilities.
The U.S. Army alone has already purchased a variety of critical capabilities from Rafael including Spike missiles for its Apache attack helicopters, two Iron Dome batteries as an interim cruise missile defense capability and the Trophy Active Protection System for its Abrams tanks.
In addition to the Spike family of missiles, the Iron Dome Air Defense System and the Drone Dome Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System, RSGS is also focused on technologies such as AI enabled combat vehicle suite technology, sensor-to-shooter integration software and makes the BNET family of advanced, tactical broadband IP-MANET (Mobile AD Hoc Network) radios. Rafael is partnered with Raytheon on Iron Dome development and production. The team has plans to open up a production facility to build the systems in the U.S.

The process to receive the clearance took multiple years. RSGS became a Limited Liability Company in September 2019 and received an employer identification number in November. RSGS signed a lease to establish its headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland, in January 2020. The process for the clearance began in earnest in April 2020 and hit snags during the coronavirus pandemic. Part of the process required the handling of classified documents, which meant the need for in-person work in a controlled office space.
Receiving the capability allows RSGS to “Americanize” its technologies, Anderson said.
“It now gives Rafael, as a foreign company, via their American subsidiary, a means to work classified programs within Rafael without having to rely on a joint venture or some other partnership or business agreement,” he said, while noting that he expects those types of relationships to continue as RSGS is considered a small, startup American company and those arrangements are still beneficial.
For instance, Rafael is a sub-contractor on Oshkosh Defense’s Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle design team, bringing artificial intelligence technology to the effort.

The OMFV program is in a preliminary design competition phase where five teams are competing to develop an initial design of what will replace the Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle.
“As we work on programs like OMFV, when it gets to the classified phase of a program, RSGS can now do that for Rafael as part of Rafael versus either being excluded from it or relying on another partner who is not the same company,” Anderson explained.
Being able to participate in classified portions of the competition means RSGS will be able to provide a deeper level of information on Rafael’s technologies and will be able to translate that into how those technologies meet program requirements, Anderson said.
Rafael hopes with the new clearance to be able to expand its missile, air defense and base defense, counter-UAS, lethality, AI and machine learning, situational awareness, sensing, force protection, lethality and communications and networking portfolios in the U.S., Anderson listed.
“Along the modernization priorities for the Army, along with the joint-counter UAS office, just think of the programs that are aligned with those different offices and how that changes the ability to work in those portfolios where before we could not,” he said.
About Jen Judson
Jen Judson is an award-winning journalist covering land warfare for Defense News. She has also worked for Politico and Inside Defense. She holds a Master of Science in journalism from Boston University and a Bachelor of Arts from Kenyon College.


More In Land


US to send Ukraine advanced NASAMS air defense weapons in $820 million package

The new aid also included ammunition drawn from U.S. stockpiles for American-supplied High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems.​


Competition to replace Bradley vehicles enters design, prototype phase

The U.S. Army opens up detailed design and prototyping phases of the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle competition releasing a request for proposals to industry.​


Congress wants more troops in Europe as war in Ukraine drags on

Congress wants to see a boost in U.S. military presence through permanent basing and rotational deployment as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues.​


General Dynamics unit wins contract to build new light tank for infantry

General Dynamics Land Systems beats out BAE Systems in a competition to build and field Mobile Protected Firepower systems for the Infantry Brigade Combat Team.​


Battlefield 360

US Army awards $72 million for new phase in next-gen ground system effort

The Army awarded Palantir Technologies and Raytheon Technologies $36 million each to turn their TITAN designs into prototypes, and the service plans to choose a single provider at the end of the 14-month phase.​

Featured Video​

0 seconds of 5 minutes, 54 secondsVolume 0%

Rheinmetall unveils Panther main battle tank


China's new carrier, and a wayward path for Marines? | Defense News Weekly Full Episode 6.25.22


Retired Generals push back on plan to redesign how Marines fight


The Army's plan to increase its power | MilTech

Trending Now​

  1. US Navy, Air Force running ‘capstone test’ of new high-power microwave missile

  2. Competition to replace Bradley vehicles enters design, prototype phase

  3. South Korean defense agency backs buy of 20 more F-35A jets

  4. China's new carrier, and a wayward path for Marines? | Defense News Weekly Full Episode 6.25.22

  5. US to send Ukraine advanced NASAMS air defense weapons in $820 million package


Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 1, Members: 0, Guests: 1)

Top Bottom