A series of flight trials of Astra Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVR-AAM) was conducted by Indian Air Force during Sept 26 to Oct 3, at Integrated Test Range (ITR), Balasore as part of final development trials of the missile.
The trials were a combination of complex tests for engagement of pilotless target in different modes of manoeuvring, off-boresight, medium and long ranges. The missiles were telemetered for evaluation of online performance of all sub-systems especially the datalink, RF seeker and proximity fuse for end-game performance.
Astra has been tested six times under different launch conditions and ranges as part of the final development trial. The missile has engaged targets and all the mission objectives have been met.
With Indian Air Force’s ( IAF) active participation, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed the missile and integrated the weapon on Su-30 and other air platforms.
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Nasik has been instrumental in the modification of a number of Su-30 aircrafts for Astra weapon integration and support during trials.
Just last month the indigenously built missile was successfully test-fired by the IAF from Su-30 aircraft, at Air Force Station, Kalaikunda. It successfully engaged a maneuvering target with high precision meeting the mission objectives.
All the sub-systems including the indigenous RF Seeker performed accurately, meeting all the mission parameters and objectives. Two missiles were also launched in the combat configuration with warhead and the targets were neutralized.
More than 50 private and public sector industries are involved in the development and production of different sub-systems of the missile. The missile is expected to be inducted into IAF in 2019.
By: Financial Express
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