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Point-defence (or point-defense; see spelling differences) is the defence of a single object or a limited area, e.g. a ship, building or an airfield, now usually against air attacks and guided missiles.[1] Point-defence weapons have a smaller range in contrast to area-defence systems and are placed near or on the object to be protected.

Point-defence may include:

Coastal artillery to protect harbours is similar conceptually, but is generally not classified as point-defence. Similarly, passive systems - electronic countermeasures, decoys, chaff, flares, barrage balloons - are not considered point-defence.


  • Bachem Ba 349 Natter - vertical take-off rocket powered manned interceptor (prototypes only)
  • Messerschmitt Me 163 - WWII era German rocket powered interceptor.
  • Goalkeeper CIWS - Gun CIWS in current service by the Dutch navy.
  • Kashtan CIWS - Gun-Missile CIWS in current service by the Russian navy.
  • RIM-116 RAM - Missile CIWS in current use by the US Navy.
  • Type 730 - in current use by the Chinese Navy.
  • Arena APS - a Russian point defence system for individual armoured vehicles.
  • Metal Storm - Another point defence/CIWS system currently in development.

See also


  1. Aldridge, Robert C. (1983). First Strike!: The Pentagon's Strategy for Nuclear War. South End Press. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-89608-154-3. 

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