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RAFAEL Armament Development Authority

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Title: RAFAEL Armament Development Authority  
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RAFAEL Armament Development Authority

For other uses, see Rafael (disambiguation).
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd.
Government-owned corporation
Industry Defense, Aerospace
Predecessor(s) Science Corps
Founded 1948
Headquarters Haifa, Israel
Products Military aerospace
Defense electronics
Naval Systems
Revenue Increase$1.851 billion USD (FY 2010)
Net income Increase$170 million USD (FY 2010)
Employees 6,000
Divisions Missiles and NCW Division
Ordnance and Protection Division
Manor - Advanced Defense Technologies Division
Subsidiaries RDC (RAFAEL Development Corporation)

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. (Hebrew: רפאל - מערכות לחימה מתקדמות בע"מ, formerly: RAFAEL Armament Development Authority), known as RAFAEL or Rafael, (also spelled as Raphael or Rephael; Hebrew acronym of "Authority for the Development of Armaments" - רשות לפיתוח אמצעי לחימה) is an Israeli defense technology company. It was founded as Israel’s National R&D Defense Laboratory for the development of weapons and military technology within the Ministry of Defense; in 2002 it was incorporated as a limited company.[1]

Rafael develops and produces weapons, military, and defense technologies for the Israel Defense Forces and for export abroad. All current projects are classified.


Rafael was established in 1948 as the Science Corps (Hebrew: חיל המדע‎, known by the acronym HEMED, Hebrew: חמד‎) under the leadership of Shlomo Gur. It was renamed the Research and Design Directorate (Hebrew: אגף הפיתוח והתיכנון‎) in 1952. In 1952 David Ben-Gurion decided to split into two agencies the activities of HEMED. The pure scientific research was left with HEMED, while the development of weapons was placed in the new EMET agency.[2]

In 1954 Ben-Gurion decided to change the name of EMET to RAFAEL.[3] It was reorganized as Rafael in 1958.[4]

In 1995, Yitzhak Rabin asked Amos Horev to become chairman of the board of Rafael, following many years in which Horev had served as chairman of Rafael's advisory committee.[5] Horev served as chairman until January 2001.[5]

Restructuring as a limited company

During the early 1990 Rafael was operating at a loss (peaking in 1995, with a loss of $120 million on a turnover of $460 million). Therefore it was decided to restructure the organization and start operating Rafael as a company. Initially the new company had three discrete divisions, each operating as a profit centre, with a separate balance sheet presented to the newly formed management board.[6]

The restructuring was completed in 2002 when Rafael was formally incorporated as a limited company (although still as a government-owned corporation), while maintaining its technological capabilities through an investment of about 10% of turnover in R&D programs. In its first year as a limited company, Rafael earned a $37 million profit on $830 million in sales.[7]

On October 14, 2007 the company changed its name from Rafael Armament Development Authority Ltd. to Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd.

Technological achievements

Civilian technology transfer

In 1993, Rafael Development Corporation (RDC), a technology transfer company, was established as a joint venture with Elron Electronic Industries; in order to commercialize applications based on defense technologies for medical devices, telecommunications, and semiconductor industries.[14] The company has successfully established and developed several companies including:


  • Shavit 2 sounding rocket
  • Tal 1 and Tal 2 Cluster Bombs


See also


External links

  • Rafael official website
  • Rafael Development Corporation
  • Rafael at EurpStory 2004
  • Rafael at the LIC-2005 conference

Coordinates: 32°52′06″N 35°05′35″E / 32.8684°N 35.0931°E / 32.8684; 35.0931

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