India has successfully conducted flight tests of new Pinaka rockets MLRS


According to a press release published by the Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) on November 4, 2020, the Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully conducted a flight test of the new PINAKA rocket from Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the coast of Odisha today, 04 November 2020.
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Enhanced version of PINAKA Rocket System, developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has been successfully flight test from Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the coast of Odisha today on 04 November 2020. (Picture source DRDO Twitter)


Development of Enhanced Pinaka system was taken up to achieve longer range performance compared to an earlier design with a reduced length. The design and development have been carried out by Pune based DRDO laboratories, namely Armament Research and Development Establishment, ARDE, and High Energy Materials Research Laboratory, HEMRL.

A total of six rockets were launched in quick succession and the tests met complete mission objectives. Rockets tested have been manufactured by M/s Economic Explosives Limited, Nagpur, to whom the technology has been transferred. All the flight articles were tracked by Range instruments such as telemetry, radar, and Electro Optical Tracking Systems which confirmed the flight performance.

The enhanced version of the Pinaka rocket would replace the existing Pinaka Mk-I rockets which are currently under production.

The Pinaka is a Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) produced in India and developed by the Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for the Indian Army. The vehicle is fitted with two pods, each with 6 launcher tubes mounted at the rear of an 8x8 TATRA military truck chassis. It launches unguided rockets of 214mm caliber which has a maximum firing range 40 km. according to Indian military sources, the Pinaka is also able to launch guided rockets equipped with navigation, guidance, control kit and has considerably enhanced the range and accuracy of the rocket. The range of this rocket is estimated to be between 60 to 80 km. 

Firing operations of the Pinaka MLRS is carried out from inside of the crew cab located at the front of the truck chassis. The launch operations can be conducted in autonomous mode fully controlled by a fire control computer (FCC). The microprocessor on the launcher automatically executes the commands received from the FCC, giving the operator the status of the system on displays and indicators. The firing operations can be also conducted from outside of the truck using a remote control unit at a distance of about 200 m. It can fire a salvo of 12 He (High Explosive) rockets in 44 seconds 


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