BHUBANESWAR: The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully conducted the second test of long range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM), developed jointly with Israel, from a defence test facility off the Odisha coast, on Tuesday.
Defence sources said the missile was fired against a pilot-less target aircraft (PTA) to gauge the killing efficiency of the system and it achieved a direct hit. The missile with a dummy payload was launched from a mobile launcher at about 2.30 pm from the launching complex - III of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur-on-sea.
The missile's first test was carried out at about 10.15 am in a similar configuration. The missile then also had successfully intercepted an unmanned aerial vehicle, mimicking an incoming hostile aircraft.
Speaking to 'The New Indian Express' from the test range a senior defence official said both the missiles successfully destroyed the targets as coordinated. "It was a proud moment for the country," he felt elated.
The advanced missile system, jointly designed and developed by India’s DRDO and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), includes a Multi-Functional Surveillance and Threat Alert Radar (MF STAR) for detection, tracking and guiding the weapon system.
The missile having a strike range of 90 km can fill the gap that India has in its armory at present and will provide the users with the capability to neutralise any aerial threats. It can carry a payload of 60 kg and flies at a speed of Mach 2.
The weapon system which weighs around 2.75 tonne will provide aerial protection to sensitive defence installations and crowded metropolitan cities of the country. After successful experimental tests, the missile will be inducted in the armed forces.
As a precautionary measure, over 3,500 people living within a 2.5 km radius of the test facility were temporarily shifted by the district administration to nearby shelter camps. Fishermen in three coastal districts of Balasore, Bhadrak and Kendrapada were asked not to venture into the sea during the test launch.