TEL AVIV, Israel (NewsNation) — After another weekend of intense combat, Israel’s Defense Forces could deploy a new laser weapon system — years ahead of schedule.

This comes after Israel’s “Iron Dome” has been overwhelmed by Hamas missiles.

The high-tech Iron Dome system has saved countless lives. But with more aerial attacks expected, the cost of operating the Iron Dome is skyrocketing and forcing IDF to look at other defense strategies.

The new “Iron Beam” wasn’t supposed to be in service for at least a couple more years. But in the wake of the ongoing conflict, sources say it could be thrust right into the middle of the war.

“The Iron Beam can work in conjunction with the Iron Dome,” Kenneth Gray, a senior lecturer at the University of New Haven, said.

According to Open Source Intelligence Monitor on X, IDF is preparing to deploy the Iron Beam laser point-defense system. The system uses a fiber laser to destroy airborne targets.

This would be a first for the IDF.

The Iron Beam, or light shield, is a directed-energy weapon created by an Israeli Defense contractor. It’s designed to destroy short-range projectiles too close for the Iron Dome to intercept.

“It consists of a 100-watt laser mounted on a swivel that can quickly track a target,” Gray said.

The Iron Dome has been protecting Israel for years, but as the war wages on, many believe the new laser defense system is much needed.

“The Iron Beam has its limitations. But if used in conjunction with the Iron Dome, it provides a defense that will be able to handle a lot higher number of incoming missiles,” Gray said.

It’s important to note that the threat of escalation in the region with other groups still remains. Plus, dozens of hostages are still being held by Hamas in Gaza as IDF prepares for a ground offensive.

NewsNation reached out to IDF to confirm the use of the Iron Beam in the days ahead but has yet to hear back, though it’s unlikely the IDF would reveal any tactics before they’re put to use.