Defence & Security Current Affairs - 2019

Defence Current Affairs of 2018-19 related to India’s Defence, Indian Armed Forces, Defence Production, Defence Acquisition and related matters for SSC, States Civils, UPSC and Other Competitive Examinations.

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DRDO successfully conducts Flight Test of ABHYAS

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO, an agency under Ministry of Defence) conducted successful flight test of ‘ABHYAS’, a High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT). The test was conducted from Interim Test Range (ITR), at Balasore in Chandipur, Odisha.

Key Highlights of Test

  • The trial flight test was tracked by various Radars & Electro Optic Systems.
  • Results: Test proved its performance in fully autonomous waypoint (means a series of unique abstract GPS points that create artificial airways) navigation mode.
  • The system performance was as per the simulations carried out.
  • Importance: the test demonstrated the capability of ABHYAS to meet requirement of mission for a cost effective High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT).

About ABHYAS

It a high-speed expendable aerial target (HEAT), which offers a realistic threat scenario for practice of weapon systems. It is designed for autonomous flying (with help of an autopilot).

Features:

  • Configuration: It is designed on an in-line small gas turbine engine. For its guidance and navigation it uses indigenously developed Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) based navigation system.
  • It has a Luneburg lens (a spherically symmetric gradient-index lens) in the nose cone which improves the radar cross-section of target for weapons practice.
  • It has an Acoustic Miss Distance Indicator (AMDI, a multi-role scoring system for gunnery training and weapons assessment) to indicate the distance it missed.

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US Navy’s Chief of Naval Operations visits India

Chief of Naval Operations of US Navy, Admiral John Michael Richardson is on a three day official tour to India. The tour is scheduled from 12 to 14 May 2019 and during his visit he will meet Indian Navy’s Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba in New Delhi.

Key Highlights

  • Purpose: Admiral John Richardson visit to India is amid rising Chinese influence in Indo-Pacific region. This is part of US strategy of grouping together with like-minded countries like India, South Korea, Australia and Japan to make sure that each Indo-Pacific nation can protect its sovereignty from coercion. It refers to coercive activities undertaken by China in South China Sea (SCS) which have become a flashpoint for US-China relations in Asia.
  • Aim: The visit by US Navy Chief is intended to consolidate bilateral naval relations between India and USA and as well as explore new avenues for naval cooperation between two nations.
  • Discussions: Major issues to be discussed during visit include information exchange, capacity building, operations and exercises, capability enhancement and training interactions.
  • Significance: The visit emphasizes the importance of information sharing and exchange between two defence partners. This will further strengthen strategic partnership between the Indian Navy and US Navy.

India-US Defence Relation

  • India-US ties has seen a significant growth in recent years.
  • In 2016, USA accorded India a Major Defence Partner status.
  • In September 2018 the inaugural Ministerial 2+2 Dialogue conducted between two nations (India and US), facilitated new avenues for defence cooperation among them.
  • Indian Navy and US Navy interact regularly at various bilateral and multilateral forums. They also participate in several maritime exercises like MALABAR and RIMPAC.
  • Other than Defence Exercise many Regular Subject Matter Expert exchange also takes place between both navies to establish interoperability in various fields.

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