At approximately 1900 EST, the Israeli Defense Forces and Aerospace Industries launched the Ofeq-13, an advanced radar surveillance satellite from Palmachim. The 13 joins the eleven other Ofeq series satellites, the last one being launched in July 2020. It is likely that the 13 was launched on the upgraded Shavit-2 launcher as were the prior satellites.
The low Earth orbit satellites complete one Earth orbit every 90 minutes. The satellite launches made Israel the eighth nation to gain an indigenous launch capability. Both the satellites and the launchers were designed and manufactured by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) with Elbit Systems’ El-Op division supplying the optical payload. However, the IDF claims that this “radar surveillence” satellite has advanced capabilities which alludes to a Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) collector as opposed to EO.
The Israel Ministry of Defense, Israel Defense Forces, and Israel Aerospace Industries launched the "Ofek 13" satellite into space a short while ago.
Additional details to follow.
— Ministry of Defense (@Israel_MOD) March 28, 2023