Field trials of Akash missiles at Pokhran impress IAF, says DRDO

November 19th, 2007 - 7:03 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, Nov 19 (ANI): Over a weeklong field trials of indigenously developed Surface-to-Air Missile Akash in the deserts of Rajasthan have impressed the top officials of Indian Air Force (IAF), according to the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
The medium range missile with a range of between 27 to 30 kms has yet to inducted by the IAF, and there were media reports earlier claiming that the IAF’s top brass were not satisfied with the missile system, as they found instances when parts of missiles fell from the main body.
Efforts were made to improve the missiles, and field trials were held.
The recent field trials conducted in Pokhran in the second week of November have put to rest such kinds of speculations.
“The IAF officials were completely impressed by the field trials of the missiles,” said a DRDO official.
In August this year, answering to a question in Lok Sabha, Defence Minister A K Antony clarified that the IAF has not declined the induction of Akash missile.
Development of Akash missile is a part of Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP), and the missile system was expected to be inducted by the Indian Army and the Air Force by 2003.
As on July 31, 2007, an amount of Rs. 492.41 crore has already been spent on development of Akash, which has a launch weight of 720 kg, a diameter of 35 cm and a length of 5.8 metres.
It can fly at supersonic speed of around 2.5 Mach and can reach an altitude of 18 kms.
The missile is supported by multi-target and multi-function phased array fire control radar called ‘Rajendra’ that has a range of about 60 km.
The first test flight of the missile was conducted in 1990, and since then many development and field trials have taken place. (ANI)

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