The Indian Army has successfully test fired the Akash missile at a very low altitude near the boundary on June 18. The trial flight was the last among the validation trials being carried out by the Army, on the first-off production models of the Akash supersonic missile.

The supersonic missile intercepted a very small unmanned, fast moving Banshee aerial vehicle at 30 m altitude above sea level, proving the system capability against subsonic cruise missile. The sophisticated multi function radar, with built in features, tracked the low flying target continuously throughout its course.

Special algorithms and techniques developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for overcoming the multiple target reflections coming from the sea, worked perfectly in the mission, the DRDO said in a statement.

More than 250 industries are engaged in the production and supply of various subsystems and components, with military and aerospace grade quality for the Akash missile and ground systems. Bharat Electronics Ltd and Bharat Dynamic Ltd are engaged in executing the production orders, worth more than Rs 20,000 crore placed by the armed forced for the Akash missile systems.

In addition, independent orders for 3D-Central acquisition radar, an offshoot of the Akash missile system, have also been placed by the three services.

With this flight trial, the Indian Army has accomplished all the validation trials on the first-off production models, and the system is being delivered for induction.

Avinash Chander, Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister said, ``While indigenous development, production and induction of Akash is making very significant contribution to India’s self reliance in air defence technologies, Akash also has great export potential.''

The trials were supervised by G Chandramouli, Project Director, Akash, and were witnessed by Director General Army Air Defence, and other senior Army officials.

The Akash mobile Air Defence Weapon System has been designed, developed and led to production by DRDO for defending and protecting the important assets of the country from penetrating aerial attacks. It is in production for the army and the air force. Akash missile systems worth Rs 3,500 crore have already been produced and delivered to the services, the DRDO said.

amritanair.ghaswalla@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on June 18, 2014)
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