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Its Time to Test DRDO’s Problem Child Astra BVR and Nirbhay Cruise Missile

Discussion in 'Indian Military Doctrine' started by layman, Apr 29, 2014.

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  1. layman

    layman Aurignacian STAR MEMBER

    May 1, 2012
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    Its Time to Test DRDO’s Problem Child Astra BVR and Nirbhay Cruise Missile


    Nirbhay Missile ( Left ) & Astra BVRAAM ( Right )

    After successful demonstration tests of two crucial Aerial defence systems for countries armed forces, DRDO Scientist are upbeat and are looking forward for new missile test in next few days . Both Akash Surface to Air Missile and New Interceptor Ballistic Defence Missile which are crucial missiles for Aerial defence system have been successful tested and Now the focus is quickly shifting to other missiles which DRDO plans to test in next few days .

    Astra BVRAAM (Beyond Visual Range Air to Air ) missile has been called ” Problem Child ” of DRDO due to repeated problems missile faced over last decade . Astra missile which has been in development for last 15 years now was first test fired from Special Ground launcher on 9th May 2003 and also carried out repeated tests in 2007 and 2011, Media reports reported that tests were Successful but in reality tests were termed Partial success because it failed to achieve desired results , Missile faced repeated stability problems in-flight , DRDO did carry out minor design corrections but still failed to get desired results .

    It was back to drawing board for DRDO and Breakthrough only came in December 2012 when a reconfigured and redesigned version of Astra BVR was successfully tested from the integrated test range (ITR) at Chandipur off the Odisha coast. Missile was fired from ground launcher and successfully intercepted a pilotless target aircraft (PTA) – Lakshya , tests were declared successful and extensive captive trials of Astra were carried on Sukhoi-30 aircraft in Pune for few months in 2013 , which also included detachment tests .

    Astra BVR finally is integrated with Sukhoi 30 systems and will fire from the aircraft soon , Successful test of Astra will boost India’s BVR arsenal which In the absence of a low-cost indigenous BVRAAM, have forced IAF to import missiles from Israel, Russia and France to equip its fighter fleet.DRDO also plans to integrate missile on indigenously developed Light Combat Aircraft (Tejas), Mirage 2000, Su-30 MKI and even the Sea Harrier at later stage. DRDO plans two Variant, Astra Mark-I, which will have a range of 44 km, and Astra Mark-II, with a range of over 100km. DRDO is hopeful that Astra Mark-I will be ready to enter production by end of 2015 and enter active service in IAF by 2016 .

    Other Problem missile for DRDO has been India’s first subsonic Nirbhay Cruise missile which had partial success in last years first test . failure of fail safe component of the missile lead to aborting of test flight mid way, which also lead to major redesign of the failed component and also lead to some software upgrade but DRDO was not able to Fix problems of the missile and carry out another test by year end in 2013 , Indian Army operates supersonic cruise missile BrahMos and was the first to ask DRDO to develop low cost subsonic cruise missile , Indian Navy too will be watching next test of Nirbhay cruise missile carefully, who already have plans to integrate Nirbhay cruise missile in Naval ships in Future .
    omya likes this.
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