DRDO Current Affairs - 2019

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DRDO test fires Hypersonic Technology Demonstrator Vehicle

India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) conducted maiden test of an indigenously developed Hypersonic Technology Demonstrator Vehicle (HSTDV) from launch pad number-4 of Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Abdul Kalam Island off Odisha Coast.

About HSTDV

It is an unmanned scramjet demonstration aircraft. It is designed to cruise at Mach 6 speed with scramjet engine.

Background: In 2008, DRDO stated that through HSTDV project idea was to demonstrate performance of a scram-jet engine at an altitude of 15 km to 20 km, is on. Thus under this project, DRDO developed a hypersonic vehicle that will be powered by a scram-jet engine.

Applications: HSTDV is dual-use technology thus with a scramjet engine, HSTDV can cruise at Mach 6 speed and can have multiple civilian applications. It can be used for launching satellites at low cost and can also be available for long-range cruise missiles of future.

Key Highlights of Test

Method: In test conducted, a missile mounted with technology demonstrator vehicle is launched and vehicle is released only after missile reaches a certain altitude and velocity.

Reason for launch: The launch of technology demonstrator vehicle was undertaken to prove a number of critical technologies for futuristic missions and to validate several technologies including HSTDV.

Analysis: The HSDTV was supposed to fire and fly on its own after being carried to an altitude of around 30-40 km by solid rocket motor of an Agni-I ballistic missile in test but after launch, Agni-I booster went into an uncontrolled mode and could not achieve desired altitude. Some technologies have been validated while some remained inconclusive of which data is being analysed.

Scram-jet system v/s Ram jet system

In scram-jet technology, fuel combustion takes place in a chamber in missile at supersonic speeds while in a ram jet system, the system collects air it needs from atmosphere during flight at subsonic speeds and propellants burn in combustion chamber.

Month: Categories: Defence & SecurityUPSC

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Supersonic Cruise Missile BrahMos test fired

The Anti-ship version of supersonic cruise missile BrahMos was test fired from the launch complex-3 of Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur in Odisha.

About BrahMos Missile

  • The name BrahMos is formed from names of two rivers i.e. Indian river Brahmaputra and the Moskva River of Russia.
  • Manufacturer: The missile is manufactured at BrahMos Aerospace Limited which is a joint venture between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Russia’s NPO Mashinostroyenia (NPOM).
  • Strategic Importance: The supersonic cruise missile is a strategic asset for India as in case of any possible threats from China and Pakistan it would act as deterrence against them.
  • Deployed: It has been operationalised in Indian Army, Indian Air Force (IAF) and Indian Navy.
  • Features: It is often described as the world’s fastest supersonic cruise missile. It is highly versatile thus can be fired from land, sea and air with a high rate of precision and accuracy. In modern-day complex battlefields, Brahmos has established itself as a major force multiplier with its impeccable land-attack, anti-ship capabilities along with a high rate of precision and accuracy. It also has multi-role and multi-platform abilities.
  • Range: The medium-range ramjet supersonic cruise missile has a strike range of about 290 km.

Month: Categories: Defence & SecurityUPSC

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