List of Contents
- DRDO successfully conducted the launch of “VL-SRSAM”
- DRDO conducted successful trial of “Anti-tank missiles Helina and Dhruvastra”
- What is the “Arjun Main Battle Tank” MK-1A?
- “INS Viraat” – SC ordered a status quo on dismantling
- “Ka-226T utility chopper”
- Indigenisation of defence -Explained
- HAL completes “Sukhoi Aircraft” order
- Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW)
- S-400 long-range Air Defence System
- India’s first Indigenously Developed 9mm Machine Pistol
- Cabinet approves procurement of 83 Light Combat Aircrafts (LCA) ‘Tejas’
- IIT Hyderabad sets up ‘TiHAN-IIT’ testbed for autonomous navigation systems
- Maiden Flight Trial of Sahayak-NG, Air Droppable Container
- Cabinet gives approval for Akash missile export
- India successfully conducts tests of Medium Range Surface to Air Missile (MRSAM)
- Super Hornet fighter jets being tested for Navy use
- India looks at integrating more countries into coastal radar network
- Defence Minister hands over DRDO systems to Armed Forces Chiefs
- What is CAATSA? Why U.S. imposes CAATSA sanctions on Turkey?
- GRSE-built stealth frigate ‘INS Himgiri’ launched
- Upgraded Akash missile successfully test-fired
DRDO successfully conducted the launch of “VL-SRSAM”
What is the news?
Defence Research & Development Organisation(DRDO) has conducted the successful launch of Vertical Launch Short Range Surface to Air Missile (VL-SRSAM).
- The missile has been indigenously designed and developed by DRDO for the Indian Navy.
- Purpose: The missile will be used to neutralize various aerial threats at close ranges including sea-skimming targets.
- Sea skimming: It is a technique of flying as low as possible (always below 50 meters from sea level). This will make it hard to detect the flying object by radar, infrared detection techniques in ships. Further, it will reduce the probability of getting shot down while approaching a target. Many anti-ship missiles and some fighter or striker aircraft use this technique to avoid getting spotted.
Key Features of the VL-SRSAM:
- Range: VL-SRSAM has a strike range of about 40 km.
- It is an all-weather air missile system. It can provide point and area defence against various aerial targets like jets, fighter aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles.
- Point defence: defence of a single object or a limited area like an airfield, a harbour etc. It can achieve by short-range missiles
- Area defence: defence of a specific area or location. It requires medium to long-range missiles.
- The missile has a canister-based state of art weapon system that can identify, track, engage and destroy the target with a high kill probability.
DRDO conducted successful trial of “Anti-tank missiles Helina and Dhruvastra”
What is the news?
The government recently conducted successful user trials for Helina and Dhruv Astra Missile Systems. The tests were carried out from the Advanced Light Helicopter(ALH) platform in desert ranges.
About Helina and Dhruv Astra Missile Systems:
- These are third generation fire and forget Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM). Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) indigenously designed and developed these missiles.
- Helina (Helicopter-launched Nag) is the army version of the missile, whereas Dhruva Astra is the air force version.
Key Features of the Missiles:
- The Missiles operate on lock-on-before launch mode which helps extend their strike range.
- Top Attack Mode: The missile is required to climb sharply after launch. Further, it travels at a certain altitude, then plunge on top of the target.
- Direct Attack Mode: The missile travels at a lower altitude, directly striking the target.
- The missiles have all-weather day and night capability. They can defeat battle tanks with conventional armour as well as with explosive reactive armour.
What is the “Arjun Main Battle Tank” MK-1A?
What is the news?
Prime Minister has handed over the indigenously developed Arjun Main Battle Tank (MK-1A) to the Indian Army. The ceremony was held in Chennai.
Arjun Main Battle Tank:
- It is a third-generation main battle tank. Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO) initiated this project in 1972. The Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment(CVRDE) is its lead laboratory in this project.
- However, The Indian Ordnance Factory’s production facility in Avadi, Tamil Nadu began its mass production only in 1996.
- Objective: This state-of-the-art tank created to provide the Indian army with superior firepower, high mobility, and excellent protection.
- Named after: The tank is named after Arjun, the archer prince. He is one of the main protagonists of the Indian epic Mahabharata.
- The main feature of Arjun tanks is its ‘Fin Stabilised Armour Piercing Discarding Sabot (FSAPDS)’ ammunition and 120-mm calibre rifled gun.
- It also has a computer-controlled integrated fire control system. This system has a stabilised sighting that works in all lighting conditions.
- Tank has secondary weapons including, a coaxial 7.62-mm machine gun for anti-personnel and a 12.7-mm machine gun for anti-aircraft and ground targets.
How is Mk-1A different from earlier versions?
- It is a weapon platform with superior firepower, high mobility, excellent protection and crew comfort.
- However, the biggest achievement of the latest version is, it is made up of 54.3% indigenous content. It is 41% in the earlier model.
Source: Indian Express
“INS Viraat” – SC ordered a status quo on dismantling
What is the News?
The Supreme Court has ordered status quo on the dismantling of the Navy’s aircraft carrier, INS Viraat. The Navy decommissioned INS Viraat from service in 2017.
What is the issue?
- “The decision to dismantle INS Viraat was taken after holding due consultation with the Indian Navy,” said the Government in the Parliament in 2019.
- However, a firm (Envitech Marine Consultants Pvt. Ltd) has filed a petition in the Supreme Court. The firm seeks to convert INS Viraat into a maritime museum and a multi-functional adventure centre.
- So, the apex court has issued notice to the Centre and others. In that notice, the court sought their responses on a plea filed by the firm. Apart from that, the court ordered status quo on the dismantling of the INS Viraat.
- INS Viraat is a Centaur class aircraft carrier. It had served in the British Navy as HMS Hermes for 25 years (from 1959 to 1984). After refurbishment, it was commissioned into the Indian Navy in 1987.
- Motto: Its motto was (in Sanskrit) – “Jalamev Yasya Balmev Tasya” (One who controls the sea is all-powerful).
- It played an important role in Operation Jupiter in 1989 during the Sri Lankan Peacekeeping operation. In the operation, the ship sent Indian peacekeeping forces to Sri Lanka
- The ship also performed blockading Pakistani ports, primarily the Karachi port as part of 1999’s Operation Vijay
- It was also deployed in Operation Parakram during 2001-02 following the terror attack on the Indian Parliament.
- The ship is nicknamed as the “Grand Old Lady“
- The ship has also participated in various international joint exercises. Like Malabar (with US Navy), Varuna (with French Navy), Naseem-Al-Bahr (with Oman Navy) and has been an integral element of annual Theater Level Operational Exercise (TROPEX).
- It is the longest-serving warship in the world. The ship also holds a Guinness Book of World Records for the same.
- Decommissioned in: The aircraft was decommissioned in March 2017.
- INS Viraat is the second aircraft carrier to be dismantled in India. In 2014, INS Vikrant was dismantled in Mumbai.
Source: The Hindu
“Ka-226T utility chopper”
What is the News?
According to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), the total indigenous content of the Ka-226T utility helicopters is between 27%-33%. These helicopters are to be locally manufactured with the Transfer of Technology(ToT) from Russia. However, the final deal is held up.
India-Russia Deal on Ka-226T
- In 2015, India and Russia had concluded an Agreement for at least 200 Ka-226T twin-engine utility helicopters. The estimated cost was over $1 billion. Among them, 60 helicopters to be directly imported and the remaining 140 manufactured locally.
- The helicopter is meant to replace the ageing and obsolete Cheetah and Chetak fleet of the Army and Air Force.
- However, the final deal is held up as the Russian proposal of 62% indigenous content in assembled helicopters falls short of the tender requirement of 70%.
- Ka-226T is a design of Russia’s famous Kamov design bureau. It is a light helicopter with a maximum take-off weight of over 3.5 tonnes. It can carry a payload of up to 1 tonne.
Key Features of KA-226T:
- It uses coaxial rotors. It means it has two sets of rotors mounted one on top of the other and typically no tail rotor.
- Coaxial rotors give improvements in lifting and payload capacity over conventional choppers.
- This is particularly beneficial in high-altitude environments. Because in high altitudes aircraft’s performance at take-off tends to diminish due to the lower air density.
- It also has a unique, detachable ‘mission’ compartment instead of a conventional cabin.
- This allows the helicopter to be adapted for different roles such as surveillance, cargo delivery etc.
Source: The Hindu
Indigenisation of defence -Explained
Indigenization of the defence sector is one of the foremost targets for Indian government since Independence. Recently, Asia’s biggest Aero Show AeroIndia 2021 was conducted in Bengaluru. During the show, Defence Minister highlighted India’s growing presence in designing and developing indigenous weapon systems. Let’s see, how India is performing in indigenisation of defence despite the challenges.
Present status of Indigenisation in India:
- Millennium Aero Dynamics and Cochin Shipyard jointly developed and produced the INS Vikrant. It is the first aircraft carrier built in India completely.
- BARC and DRDO jointly developed India’s first indigenous nuclear submarine Arihant.
- HAL along with Taneja Aerospace and Aviation Limited (TAAL) is developing Dhruv multirole helicopter, Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) and Rudra armed helicopter. They are also manufacturing Tejas Light Combat Aircraft in India.
- DRDO is currently working on an indigenous unmanned aerial vehicle named Nishant.
- Under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP), India developed 5 missiles in India namely
- Akash (surface-to-air)
- Prithvi (surface-to-surface)
- Nag (anti-tank)
- Trishul (the naval version of Prithvi)
- Agni Ballistic missiles having different ranges – Agni V has given India an ICBM (Intercontinental ballistic missile) status in 2013.
Need for indigenous defence sector:
First, reducing India’s Fiscal Deficit: Currently, India’s defence sector imports stand at 70%. This makes India the 2nd largest arms importer in the world, only next to Saudi Arabia. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), in 2019, India became the third-largest defence spender in the world. So, indigenisation of the defence sector is necessary to reduce the Fiscal Deficit.
Second, national security at risk: India shares porous borders with hostile neighbours. Currently, imported equipment in India are creating multiple challenges related to their Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul (MRO) due to non-availability of spares and assemblies. These equipment without proper MRO can put India under major risks mainly during the war like situation. For example, recent military standoff with China. This will put India’s national security at risk. So indigenisation is necessary.
Third, generation of employment: Defence manufacturing is one of the very few sectors that will lead to multiplicity of employment benefits. As per the government estimates, just 20-25% import reduction will directly create 100,000 to 120,000 additional highly skilled jobs in India. Apart from that, it will lead to large scale innovation, a huge number of spin-off industries and start-ups etc.
Fourth, boosting Indian exports and generating forex reserve. The SIPRI data mentions India as the 23rd largest country in terms of defence exports. This shows under-performance considering the fact that, India spent $71.1 billion in the defence sector in 2019 alone. India can export indigenously produced defence technology and equipment to the neighbouring nations. Like space and nuclear research, R&D in defence sector will increase the focus on both civil and military economy.
Fifth, indigenous equipment will increase the trust and confidence of the Indian defence forces. It will also strengthen India’s image in the global arena.
Government initiatives to boost indigenisation in defence sector:
First, India introduced the Defence Procurement Policy to focus on self-reliance. The policy allowed the (DAC) Defence Acquisition Council to “fast-track” ways to acquire weapons. The policy aims 2025 to be the year to become self-reliant in 13 weapons platforms. These include missiles, warships, tanks, aircraft, and artillery. These comprise the bulk of Indian imports.
Second, the establishment of E-Biz Portal. It is an online portal to process applications for Industrial Licences (IL). The Government also set up Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) framework. It aims to create an ecosystem to foster innovation and technology development in Defence and Aerospace.
Third, removal of annual capacity restriction criteria for defence industries. This is to facilitate more number of startups in the defence sector.
Fourth, the government also approved the Strategic Partnership Policy. This is to promote Joint Ventures (JV) between global defence majors and the indigenous private sector. Under this, the government will designate certain private players a status of Strategic Partner (SP). That SP will have long term relationships with global defence majors to learn the technology and also to build the capacity at the local level.
Fifth, the change in FDI policy. The government earlier allowed 49% of FDI under the automatic route. But in 2020 the government increased this to 74%. This will act as a major boost to the defence sector as it will not only increase FDI but it will also increase the number of startups.
Sixth, recently the government imposed a ban on 101 import items in the defence sector to boost indigenisation. These include high tech weapons like artillery guns, sonar systems, assault rifles, radars, transport aircraft, etc. As a result of this, now the defence forces will procure these equipment only from the domestic manufacturers.
Challenges in indigenisation of defence sector:
First, private sector participation is very low. Currently, India depends on DRDO and defence PSUs for the majority of its needs. There is an issue of land acquisition in India. This, coupled with non-availability of Permanent arbitration committee to settle disputes in India leads to lower private participation.
Second, manufacturing and procurement-related delay. There are bureaucratic and political hurdles in India. Indian defence suppliers also take more time to complete the projects. There is also a problem of delay in the delivery of the projects. This hurts India’s image as a trusted supplier.
Third, conflict between the manufacturers & defence forces. Defence forces being on the ground of the battlefield, know that the border areas demand some specific design and characteristics of the equipment. But there is a conflict between the manufacturers and defence forces in India regarding the design, capacity etc of the defence equipment. All this leads to inefficient coordination between the military, academy and industry.
Fourth, most of the Indian defence budget goes towards salaries, retirement benefits, perks and benefits, MRO of equipment etc. This limits the government capacity to focus on long-term budgeting towards the defence sector.
Suggestions to improve indigenisation:
First, the government can implement the Shaketkar committee recommendations on the closure of Army Postal Establishments and Military Farms in peace locations swiftly. Apart from that government can also consider the Chief of Defence Staff opinion. He mentioned increasing the retirement age to improve government spending on other relevant activities.
Second, boosting private sector participation is the need of the hour. This can be achieved by creating a permanent arbitration cell, ensuring level playing field for private companies like that of PSUs.
Third, the government can provide an autonomous status to DRDO. It will improve the number of sub-contracts to the private sector and also instil the confidence to private sectors.
Fourth, the government have to improve the in-house design capacity like that of Naval Design Bureau. This will reduce the conflict with manufacturers in design and capacity. Shaketkar committee recommended transformation of ‘The Military Intelligence School’ at Pune into ‘tri-service intelligence training establishment’.
According to SIPRI, India’s military expenditure in 2019 was 2.4% of its GDP. It was higher than the combined expenditure on health(1.5%GDP) and research (0.7% of GDP). The government needs to improve the indigenization in defence sector at the war pace as it has many benefits such as reducing Fiscal Deficit, improvement in manufacturing etc.
HAL completes “Sukhoi Aircraft” order
What is the News?
Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd.(HAL) has manufactured the last two of the 272 Su-30MKIs aircraft. It will deliver them to the Indian Air Force.
- Sukhoi Su-30MKI: It is a twin-jet multi-role air superiority fighter developed by Russia’s Sukhoi and built under licence by India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited(HAL) for the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- The aircraft has been modified to carry the air-launched version of the supersonic cruise missile BrahMos.
- BrahMos Missile: It is a supersonic cruise missile. It is a joint venture between the Russian NPO and India’s Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
- The name BrahMos was formed from the names of two rivers, the Brahmaputra of India and the Moskva of Russia.
- Key Features:
- It is a two-stage missile with a solid propellant booster as the first stage and liquid ramjet as the second stage.
- Versions: Various versions of the BrahMos are developed. It can be fired from land, warships, submarines, and Sukhoi-30 fighter jets.
- Range: The range of BrahMos has been extended to around 400 kilometres as compared to its initial range of 290 kilometres. More versions of higher ranges currently are under development.
Source: The Hindu
Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW)
Why in News?
Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO) has conducted a successful trial of the indigenously developed Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW) off the Odisha coast from the Hawk-I jet of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited(HAL).
- Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon(SAAW): It is a long-range precision-guided anti-airfield weapon developed by DRDO’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI) Hyderabad.
- The weapon is designed to strike ground targets, especially adversary airfield infrastructure or similar strategically important installations.
- The weapon is capable of engaging ground enemies airfield assets such as radars, bunkers, taxi tracks, and runways up to a range of 100 kilometres.
- RUDRAM: It is India’s first indigenous anti-radiation air-to-surface missile for Indian Air Force(IAF). The missile is integrated on SU-30 Mk1 fighter aircraft.
- Purpose: It is designed to detect, track and neutralise the adversary’s radar, communication assets and other radio frequency sources which are generally part of their air defence systems.
Source: Indian Express
S-400 long-range Air Defence System
Why in News?
Indian military specialists will soon undergo training courses on the S-400 long-range Air Defence System in Russia.
- S-400 Triumf Missile: It is a mobile, surface-to-air missile system(SAM) designed by Russia.
- Supply of S-400 missiles is one of the flagship projects in the Russian-Indian military and military-technical cooperation
- The S-400 is an air defence system. The missile can destroy airborne targets within the range of 250km and also capable of destroying fast moving targets such as fighter aircraft.
- It is capable of firing three types of missiles to create a layered defence.
- The system can engage all types of aerial targets including aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles(UAV) and ballistic and cruise missiles within the range of 400km, at an altitude of up to 30km.
- It can track 100 airborne targets and engage six of them simultaneously.
- Concerns for India: India is concerned that the U.S would proceed with Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act(CAATSA) sanctions against India over the S-400 purchase from Russia.
- CAATSA: It is a United States federal law that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia. It includes sanctions against countries that engage in significant transactions with Russia’s defense and intelligence sectors.
India’s first Indigenously Developed 9mm Machine Pistol
News: Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed the country’s first indigenous machine pistol ASMI.
- ASMI: It is a 9mm Machine Pistol jointly developed by DRDO and the Indian Army. The weapon is aptly named “Asmi” meaning Pride, Self-Respect and Hard Work.
- Range: The machine pistol can fire at a range of 100 metres and is in the class of the Uzi series guns of Israel.
- Design: The machine sports an upper receiver made from aircraft-grade Aluminum and lower receiver from carbon fiber. The 3D Printing process has been used in designing and prototyping various parts including trigger components made by metal 3D printing.
- Applications: The weapon has huge potential in the Armed forces as a personal weapon for heavy weapon detachments, commanders, tank and aircraft crews, drivers/dispatch riders, radio/radar operators, counter insurgency and counter-terrorism operations among others.
- Significance: The pistol will pave way for self-reliance and it is expected to be inducted by the Services and Paramilitary Forces (PMFs).
Cabinet approves procurement of 83 Light Combat Aircrafts (LCA) ‘Tejas’
News: Cabinet has approved procurement of 73 LCA Tejas Mk-1A fighter aircraft and 10 LCA Tejas Mk-1 Trainer aircraft.
- LCA Tejas: It is a single-engine, fourth-generation, multirole light fighter aircraft designed by the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA). Tejas was developed in collaboration with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited(HAL) for the Indian Air Force(IAF) and Indian Navy.
- LCA Tejas Mk 1A is an advanced version of LCA Mk1. It is a supersonic fighter at all altitudes for air combat which can carry a payload of 3,500 kg and it is best suited for offensive air support.
- Key Features: This Mk 1A is equipped with critical operational capabilities of Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar, Beyond Visual Range (BVR) Missile, Electronic Warfare (EW) Suite and Air to Air Refueling(AAR).
- Significance: It is the first “Buy (Indian-Indigenously Designed, Developed and Manufactured)” category procurement of combat aircrafts with an indigenous content of 50% which will progressively reach 60% by the end of the programme.
IIT Hyderabad sets up ‘TiHAN-IIT’ testbed for autonomous navigation systems
News: Union Minister of Education has virtually laid the foundation stone of ‘TiHAN-IIT Hyderabad.
- TiHAN: It is India’s first Technology Innovation Hub for Autonomous Navigation Systems and Data Acquisition Systems setup by IIT Hyderabad.
- Focus: The hub focuses on addressing various challenges hindering the real-time adoption of unmanned autonomous vehicles for both terrestrial and aerial applications.
- Funded by: It was sanctioned and funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) under the National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NM-ICPS).
- Sectors: The hub’s focus sectors include Intelligent, Autonomous Transportation and Systems, Agriculture, Surveillance, and Environmental & Infrastructure Monitoring.
- Who can use it? The hub will be available for use by industries, R&D labs, academia conducting research and development in the broad areas of autonomous navigation.
- Cyber Physical Systems(CPS): It is a new class of engineered systems that integrate computation and physical processes in a dynamic environment. It encompasses technology areas of Cybernetics, Mechatronics, Design and Embedded systems, Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, Artificial Intelligence (AI) among others.
- National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NM-ICPS): It was launched in 2018 by the Department of Science & Technology for a period of five years.
- Aim: To create a seamless ecosystem for CPS by coordinating and integrating nationwide efforts encompassing knowledge generation, human resource development, research, technology, innovation and commercialization.
- Key Objectives of the Mission: The mission implementation would develop and bring:
- Cyber Physical Systems (CPS) and associated technologies within reach in the country,
- adoption of CPS technologies to address India specific National / Regional issues,
- produce Next Generation skilled manpower in CPS,
- catalyze Translational Research,
- accelerate entrepreneurship and start-up ecosystem development in CPS,
- give impetus to advanced research in CPS, Technology development and higher education in Science, Technology and Engineering disciplines, and
- place India at par with other advanced countries and derive several direct and indirect benefits.
- Features of the mission:
- The mission aims at establishment of 15 numbers of Technology Innovation Hubs(TIH), six numbers of Application Innovation Hubs(AIH) and four numbers of Technology Translation Research Parks(TTRP).
- These Hubs & TTRPs will connect to Academics, Industry, Central Ministries and State Government in developing solutions at reputed academic, R&D and other organizations across the country in a hub and spoke model.
Maiden Flight Trial of Sahayak-NG, Air Droppable Container
News: Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO) along with Indian Navy has conducted the successful maiden test trial of ‘SAHAYAK-NG’.
- Sahayak-NG: It is India’s first indigenously designed and developed Air Dropped Container from IL 38SD aircraft (Indian Navy) off the coast of Goa.
- Developed by: It has been developed by two DRDO laboratories i.e. NSTL, Visakhapatnam and ADRDE, Agra along with industry partner M/s Avantel for GPS integration.
- Key Features:
- The container can enhance Indian Navy’s operational logistics capabilities and provide critical engineering stores to ships which are deployed more than 2000 km from the coast.
- It also reduces the requirement of ships to come close to the coast to collect spares and stores.
- The GPS aided container also has the capability to carry a payload that weighs up to 50 kg and can be dropped from heavy aircraft.
Read Also : Current affairs for upsc
Cabinet gives approval for Akash missile export
Source: The Hindu
News: The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister has approved the export of the Akash Missile system. It also approved the high-level committee formed to expedite clearance of such exports.
- Akash Missile: It is an indigenously developed short range Surface-to-air missile with multi-target engagement capability.
- Developed by: The missile has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
- The Missile has been inducted and is operational with the Indian Air Force(IAF) as well as the Indian Army(IA).
- Key Features:
- The missile has a strike range of 25 km.It can reach an altitude of 18 km and can be fired from both tracked and wheeled platforms.
- It has a large operational envelope from a low altitude of 30 metres to a maximum of up to 20 km.
- The system can simultaneously engage multiple targets in Group Mode or Autonomous Mode.
- It has built-in Electronic Counter-CounterMeasures(ECCM) features.The entire weapon system has been configured on mobile platforms.
- In August 2020, the Defence Ministry has issued a draft ‘Defence Production & Export Promotion Policy (DPEPP) 2020’ for public feedback with the aim to achieve a manufacturing turnover of $25 bn or ₹1,75,000 crore, including exports of $5 bn in aerospace and defence goods and services by 2025.
India successfully conducts tests of Medium Range Surface to Air Missile (MRSAM)
Source: The Indian Express
News: India has successfully conducted the first launch of the Army version of the Medium Range Surface to Air Missile(MRSAM).An unmanned air vehicle(UAV), ‘Banshee’, was first flown into the air which was hit by the MRSAM.
- MRSAM: It is an Air and Missile Defence system developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in collaboration with the Israel Aerospace Industry(IAI).
- Purpose: It has been developed to neutralise airborne threats like jets, missiles and rockets, including projectiles launched simultaneously.
- Key Features:
- The Missile consists of a command and control post, multi-function radar and mobile launcher system.
- It has a strike range of nearly 100 km, weighs around 2.7 tonne and can carry a payload of 60 kg.
- The missile has a speed of Mach 2 and possesses high degrees of maneuverability at the target interception range.
Super Hornet fighter jets being tested for Navy use
Source : The Hindu
News: Boeing has announced the successful demonstration of the compatibility of its F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets with the Indian Navy’s aircraft carriers as part of its pitch for the Navy’s fighter procurement.
- Super Hornet Fighter Jet: It is the world’s most lethal, advanced, combat-proven, multi-role frontline fighter-jet.
- Developed by: The jet has been developed by US Aerospace Company, Boeing.
- Key Features
- Multi-role Superiority: Capable of tactical strikes, air reconnaissance, air defense, and maritime roles.
- Cutting-edge Technologies: Enhanced computing and data link, advanced cockpit system, signature improvements
- Lifecycle Affordability: Lowest cost per flight hour among all U.S. tactical fighters in production.
India looks at integrating more countries into coastal radar network
Source: The Hindu
News: India is in talks with Maldives, Myanmar and Bangladesh to set up coastal radar stations as part of efforts to further expand the coastal radar chain network meant to enable real-time monitoring of the high seas for threats.
- Countries already integrated in the Coastal Radar Network: Mauritius, Seychelles and Sri Lanka have been integrated into the country’s coastal radar chain network.
- Information Management and Analysis Centre(IMAC): It was established in 2014 and is the nodal centre for maritime security information collation and dissemination.
- Location: Gurgaon, Haryana
- Operated by: It is jointly operated by the Navy and Coast Guard.
- White Shipping agreements: It refers to exchange of relevant advance information on the identity and movement of commercial non-military merchant vessels.
- Indian Navy has been authorised to conclude white shipping agreements with 36 countries and three multilateral constructs. So far agreements have been concluded with 22 countries and one multilateral construct.
- Information Fusion Centre – Indian Ocean region(IFC-IOR): It was set up in 2018 within the premises of the IMAC to coordinate with regional countries on maritime safety and security and act as a regional repository of maritime data.
Defence Minister hands over DRDO systems to Armed Forces Chiefs
News: Defence Minister has handed over three indigenously developed Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) systems to Army, Navy and Air Force.
What are the three indigenously developed systems?
- Indian Maritime Situational Awareness System (IMSAS): It is a state-of-the-art and high performance intelligent software system that provides Global Maritime Situational Picture, marine planning tools and analytical capabilities to Indian Navy.
- Developed by: Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR), Bengaluru and Indian Navy has jointly conceptualised and developed the product and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), Bengaluru has implemented it.
- Astra is the indigenously developed Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM).
- The BVRAAM technology enables fighter-pilots to shoot precisely at the enemy targets which are beyond their visual range.
- The missile has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
- The missile has a range of over 70 km.It can fly towards the target at a speed of over 5,555 km per hour.
- The missile has a 15-kilogramme high-explosive pre-fragmented warhead and the missile is also capable of engaging targets of different ranges and altitudes.
- Further,Astra missile also has some highly advanced features like Electronic Counter-Countermeasures or ECCM.This feature enables Astra missile to overcome defensive measures put forth for the target by the enemy.
- The ASTRA Mk-I Weapon System integrated with SU-30 Mk-I aircraft is being inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- Border Surveillance System(BOSS): It is an all-weather electronic surveillance system successfully designed and developed by Instruments Research and Development Establishment (IRDE), Dehradun.
- Purpose: The system has been deployed at Ladakh border area for day and night surveillance and facilitates monitoring and surveillance by automatically detecting the intrusions in harsh high-altitude sub-zero temperature areas with remote operation capability.
What is CAATSA? Why U.S. imposes CAATSA sanctions on Turkey?
Source: Click here
News: The United States(US) has imposed Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) sanctions on Turkey for its purchase of Russia’s S-400 missile defence system.
What is Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA)?
CAATSA is a US federal law enacted in 2017 that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea and Russia.
- Purpose: The CAATSA Act empowers the US President to impose sanctions against countries that engage in a significant transaction with Russian defence and intelligence sectors.
What type of sanctions will be imposed under CAATSA?
a) Prohibition on loans to the sanctioned country.
b) prohibition of Export-Import bank assistance for exports to sanctioned persons
c) prohibition on procurement by the United States Government to procure goods or services from the sanctioned person among others.
- Implications for India: India could also face similar US sanctions for purchasing high-value military defense items, in particular the S-400 Triumf missile defense system from Russia under the act.
What is S-400 Triumf Missile?
It is a mobile, modern long range surface-to-air missile system(MRL SAM) designed by Russia.
It is considered to be most advanced system than the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence system (THAAD) developed by the United States
The system can engage all types of aerial targets including aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles(UAV) and ballistic and cruise missiles within the range of 400km, at an altitude of up to 30 km. It can track 100 airborne targets and engage six of them simultaneously.
GRSE-built stealth frigate ‘INS Himgiri’ launched
Source: Click here
News: INS Himgiri, the first of the three Project 17A ships was launched by the Indian Navy.
- INS Himgiri: It is an indigenous stealth frigate being built by the Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited(GRSE), Kolkata under Project 17A for the Navy.
- Project 17A or Nilgiri-class frigate: It is a follow-on of the Project 17 Shivalik-class frigate for the Indian Navy.A total of seven ships are being built, four at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited(MDL) and three ships at GRSE.
- Significance: P17A ships are the first gas turbine propulsion and largest combat platforms ever built at GRSE.
- Project 17A ships are sourcing 80% of the material/ equipment required for the project from indigenous vendors and with employment generation for over 2000 Indian firms and MSMEs within the country.
Upgraded Akash missile successfully test-fired
Source: Click Here
News: Indian Air Force has successfully test-fired the Akash Missiles at Suryalanka test firing range in Andhra Pradesh.
- Akash Missile: It is a medium-range mobile surface-to-air missile defense system developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and manufactured by Bharat Dynamics Limited(BDL).
- Used by: It is an indigenously made missile inducted into the Indian Army and Air Force.
- Range: The missile has the capability to engage aerial threats upto the maximum range of 25 km and up to an altitude of 18 km operating at a speed range of 1.8 to 2.5 Mach.