India’s new generation Akash missile successfully intercepted a high-speed unmanned aerial target in a flight test carried out by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) on Friday from Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the Odisha coast.
The test has validated the functioning of the complete weapon system consisting of the missile with indigenously developed RF Seeker, Launcher, Multi-Function Radar and Command, Control & Communication system, according to a defence ministry statement.
The test was carried out amidst inclement weather conditions proving the all-weather capability of the weapon system.
The system performance was validated through the data captured by a number of Radar, Telemetry and Electro Optical Tracking systems. A team of Indian Air Force Officers witnessed the test.
On July 21, 2021, the missile was successfully flight-tested without meeting all the mission requirements.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) and the army already operate nine batteries of the old Akash missile. This is now being improved into the Akash-NG, which is engineered to shoot down extremely high-performing fighter jets.
The Akash-NG is powered by a solid rocket motor that replaces the old ramjet in the Akash missile that is currently being used. The new generation Akash missile (Akash-NG) can strike targets at a distance of around 60 km and fly at a speed of up to Mach 2.5.
The second major change in the Akash-NG is its new seeker head which locks onto the enemy aircraft and continuously guides the Akash-NG to hit the target.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has congratulated DRDO, Indian Air Force and the Industry on the second successful flight test of Akash-NG in a span of three days. He said the development of this state-of-the-art missile system will prove to be a force multiplier for air defence capabilities of Indian Air Force.