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India inches closer to Akash New-Generation surface-to-air missile fielding.

| Defense News Army 2024

In a press release dated January 16, 2024, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) of India announced that the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully conducted a test of its advanced Akash New-Generation (Akash-NG) surface-to-air missile (SAM), marking a significant milestone in indigenous defense technology.
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Akash missile launcher truck DSEI 2017 

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) revealed that this latest trial took place at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) in Chandipur, situated along India's northeastern coastline. The test featured the Akash-NG prototype engaging and successfully intercepting a high-speed unmanned aerial target at a very low altitude.

The test's success was confirmed through an array of monitoring systems, including electro-optical targeting, radar, and telemetry systems established by the ITR. This achievement is a crucial step towards the system's user trials, demonstrating the effectiveness of the integrated missile, launcher, radar, and command and control suite.

The Akash-NG, a modern iteration of the Akash (Sky) family of SAMs, represents a significant upgrade over its predecessor. Developed collaboratively by DRDO, Bharat Dynamics Limited, and Bharat Electronics Limited, it's designed for the Indian Air Force (IAF) to counter agile, low-observable aerial threats. This system, inspired by the Russian Kub (NATO: SA-6 Gainful) medium-range SAM, incorporates numerous indigenous components, including an advanced phased array radar for enhanced target tracking and illumination.

Distinguished from the original Akash system, which operates within a range of 3 to 30 km and altitudes from 30 m to 18 km, the Akash-NG boasts an extended interception range of up to 60 km. It is a versatile system, deployable as a mobile unit on trailers or trucks or stationed as fixed air defense emplacements.

The Akash-NG's package typically includes surveillance radars, phased array passive electronically scanned tracking and guidance radar, and transporter-erector launchers (TELs). A standard firing battery can comprise up to four TELs, each equipped with Akash-NG missiles, accompanied by command and control units, tactical radar, and support vehicles. This system reflects India's strides in enhancing its air defense capabilities, providing robust protection against a spectrum of aerial threats.

Defense News January 2024

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