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  • 22 Jul 2021
  • 4 min read

Why in News

Recently, the Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully flight-tested the New Generation Akash Missile (Akash-NG) and the Man Portable Anti Tank Guided Missile (MPATGM).

  • In June 2021 a new generation nuclear capable ballistic missile Agni-P (Prime) was successfully test-fired by the DRDO.
  • In February 2021 India also successfully test-fired indigenously-developed anti-tank guided missile systems ‘Helina’ and ‘Dhruvastra’.

Defence Research & Development Organisation

  • It is the Research & Development wing of the Ministry of Defence, Govt of India, with a vision to empower India with cutting-edge defence technologies.
  • It was established in 1958 after combining the Technical Development Establishment (TDEs) of the Indian Army and the Directorate of Technical Development & Production (DTDP) with the Defence Science Organisation (DSO).

Key Points

  • Akash Missile (Akash-NG):
    • About:
      • It is a surface-to-air Missile. It is a new variant of the Akash missile that can strike targets at a distance of around 60 km and fly at a speed of up to Mach 2.5.
      • Once deployed, the Akash-NG weapon system will prove to be a force multiplier for the air defence capability of the Indian Air Force.
    • Development & Production:
      • Developed by Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL), Hyderabad in collaboration with other DRDO laboratories.
      • It is being produced by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).
    • Akash Missile:
      • Akash is India’s first indigenously produced medium range Surface to Air missile that can engage multiple targets from multiple directions.
        • The missile is unique in the way that it can be launched from mobile platforms like battle tanks or wheeled trucks. It has nearly 90% kill probability.
        • The missile is supported by the indigenously developed radar called 'Rajendra'.
        • The missile is reportedly cheaper and more accurate than US’ Patriot missiles due to its solid-fuel technology and high-tech radars.
      • It can engage targets at a speed 2.5 times more than the speed of sound and can detect and destroy targets flying at low, medium and high altitudes.
      • The Akash missile system has been designed and developed as part of India’s 30-year-old Integrated Guided-Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).
  • Man Portable Anti Tank Guided Missile:
    • It is an indigenously-developed anti-tank guided missile.
      • Anti Tank guided missile is a medium or long-range missile whose primary purpose is to destroy tanks and other armoured vehicles.
    • It is a low weight, fire and forget missile. It is incorporated with state-of-the-art Miniaturized Infrared Imaging Seeker along with advanced avionics.
    • It is launched using a tripod designed for a maximum range of 2.5 km with a launch weight of less than 15 Kg.
    • Its successful test marked a major boost for the government’s Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign and would strengthen the Indian Army.

Integrated Guided-Missile Development Programme

  • It was conceived by Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to enable India attain self-sufficiency in the field of missile technology. b
  • The 5 missiles (P-A-T-N-A) developed under this program are:
    • Prithvi: Short range surface to surface ballistic missile.
    • Agni: Ballistic missiles with different ranges, i.e. Agni (1,2,3,4,5)
    • Trishul: Short range low level surface to air missile.
    • Nag: 3rd generation anti-tank missile.
    • Akash: Medium range surface to air missile.

Source: PIB

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