Jericho 1

Jericho 1 was a short-ranged, solid-fueled ballistic missile developed and produced by Israel. Israel’s first nuclear capable missile, it was retired from service during the 1990’s. 1

Jericho 1 at a Glance

Originated From: Israel
Possessed By: Israel
Alternate Names: YA-1
Class: Short-range Ballistic Missile (SRBM)
Basing: TEL vehicle, silo-based, railcar-based
Length: 13.4 m
Diameter: 0.8 m
Launch Weight: 6,700 kg
Payload: Single warhead
Warhead: HE, nuclear, chemical capable
Propulsion: Two- stage solid propellant
Range: 500 km
Status: Obsolete
In Service: 1973- 1990’s

Jericho 1 Development

The Jericho 1 is thought to have entered development in 1962 with the assistance of the French company Marcel-Dassault.2 The missile, given the designator YA-1, is  based on Dassault’s design, the MD-620. 3

Approximately 16 test launches took place between 1965 and 1968, of which 10 were successful. 4

After initially receiving 14 Jericho 1 missiles from France, Israel domestically produced approximately 50 additional missiles between 1971 and 1978. 5

The Jericho 1 was Israel’s first nuclear capable missile.6

The missile entered service in 1973. 7

Jericho 1 Specifications

The Jericho 1 had a range of 500 km, with a payload of up to 650 kg. It was 13.4 m long, with a 0.8 m diameter, and a total launch weight of 6,700 kg. 8 The missile used a two-stage solid propellant engine and could be launched from a railroad flat truck or a TEL vehicle. The Jericho could carry a payload of up to 650 kg, reportedly equipped with either a 450 kg high explosive, a 20 kT nuclear warhead, or potentially a chemical warhead. 9 The missile reportedly has an accuracy of 1,000 m CEP. 10

The range on the Jericho 1 is sufficient to strike major cities such as Damascus and Cairo from secured launch locations. 11

Jericho 1 Service History

The Jericho 1 missiles were housed in Zacharia, located south-west of Tel Aviv and stationed in underground caves. Although the Jericho 1 missiles have been taken out of service, it is suspected that there are at least 90 Jericho 2 missiles at this site. 12

It is believed that all Jericho 1 missiles were taken out of service in the 1990’s and replaced with the longer-range Jericho 2. 13


Sources

  1. James O’Halloran, IHS Jane’s Weapons: Strategic 2015-2016, 2015, (United Kingdom: IHS), 52.
  2. O’Halloran, 52.
  3. Dassault Aviation, “MD 620 Jericho”, 2013, http://www.dassault-aviation.com/fr/passion/avions/dassault-militaires/md-620-jericho/.
  4. Nuclear Threat Initiative, “Israel: Missile”, November 2012, http://www.nti.org/learn/countries/israel/delivery-systems/.
  5. O’Halloran, 53 .
  6. Bulletin of Peace Proposals, “Nuclear Weapons in the Middle East,” Vol.7(4), 371.
  7. Global Security.org, “Jericho 1” 2016, http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/israel/jericho-1.htm.
  8. Global Security.org, “Jericho 1”, 2016, http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/israel/jericho-1.htm.
  9. Federation of American Scientists, “Jericho 1”, June 20, 2000, https://fas.org/nuke/guide/israel/missile/jericho-1.htm.
  10. O’Halloran, 53.
  11. Nuclear Threat Initiative, “Israel: Missile”, November 2012, http://www.nti.org/learn/countries/israel/delivery-systems/.
  12. Ibid.
  13. O’Halloran, 52.
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