LRSAM Successfully Flight-Tested
- For the first time, Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LRSAM), jointly designed and developed by IAI, Israel and DRDO, has been successfully flight tested from an Israeli Naval Platform. The missile successfully engaged and destroyed the incoming air target.
- The test came just a few days after the November 22 successful interception off Orissa by an Advanced Air Defence (AAD) missile of a dummy incoming ballistic missile.
- All the subsystems of the missile performed as predicted and achieved the desired goal of hitting the incoming target.
- DRDO has designed and developed Dual Pulse Propulsion System and other safe arm mechanisms for Solid Propulsion system for the first time.
- This test from Israel Naval Platform achieved the major milestone in proving the missile system with complete participation of the Ship Borne Tracking Equipment etc.
- The missile configuration is same for both LRSAM/MRSAM. Further Operational Flight Trials (O.F.T) will be conducted shortly from Indian Naval Platform before induction into the service.
- LRSAM will be inducted into Indian Naval Ships (P-15A).
- The LRSAM programme consists of Missiles, MFSTAR (Radar), Weapon Control System, Vertical Launcher unit and Two- way data link
- There is no guarantee that India’s air defence systems would be able to detect a missile directed at an Indian city and launch a counter-attack to shoot it down before it wreaks havoc on targets.The vulnerability of Indian cities and other strategic assets have been exercising military planners for long.
- Their efforts to develop a robust air defence network received a major boost with the first successful test of the Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LR-SAM)
- However, officials point out that given the large airspace, there still remain significant gaps in the air defence network and most systems in service, largely old Russian ones, are in urgent need of replacement.
- While efforts have been on for over a decade to procure new systems or develop them indigenously or in collaboration, most of them have been repeatedly delayed due to time and cost overruns.
What is an Air Defence Network
- Air defence networks are meant to detect, track and shoot down incoming enemy aircraft, missiles or drones.
- Any incoming hostile target is first detected by long-range radars connected to the SAM(Surface to Air Missile) system and once the threat is identified and its trajectory determined, the long-range missiles are fired.
- For instance, if an incoming missile moves in beyond the range of a long-range missile, it is engaged with medium-range missiles. As the last resort if the missile is in close proximity, man-portable systems and shoulder-fired missiles like Igla are fired along with anti-aircraft guns.
- At the moment, upgrade and replacement programmes are in the pipeline in every single category among the three services.
- After a long delay, the indigenous Akash short-range system has finally been delivered to the Army and Air Force. It can detect and target aircraft up to 30 km away at altitudes of up to 18,000 metres.
- India has also initiated a series of joint development projects with Israel to develop SAM systems. The Air Force MR-SAM project is almost a replica of the LR-SAM but for land-based operations. However, the missile is now expected to be inducted only in 2017, three years behind schedule.
- In a desperate move to fill gaps, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) recently approved the digitisation of the 24 Pichora SAMs of the Air Force. The Pichora system is of 1980’s vintage.
- The Navy and the Air Force projects are together worth around Rs 13,000 crore.
You may also like...