Prithvi interceptor missile Current Affairs - 2020

Pakistan test fires anti-ship missiles successfully

The Pakistan Navy on April 25, 2020, had successfully test fired anti-ship missiles in the North Arabian sea.

Highlights

The missiles were fired at sea level from by aircraft and warships from the surface ships. The Pakistan Navy sends strong signals of readiness to encounter enemies upon the success of the testing.

The testing comes during the period where India-Pakistan relations are strained as the Indian Government abrogated Article 370. Article 370 had given special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir earlier.

Anti-Ship Missiles

The Anti-Ship Missiles are those missiles that are used against large boats and ships. The first anti-ship missiles were developed by Germany during the reign of Hitler.

Indian Anti-ship missiles

The anti-ship missiles possessed by India includes BrahMos, Nirbhay, Dhanush, BrahMos II and BrahMos NG. BrahMos missiles were jointly developed by India and Russia.

The Nirbhay anti-ship missile is under development by the Aeronautical Development Establishment operating under DRDO (Defence Research Development Organization). The missile is under flight trails. The first stage of the missile is fired with solid fuel and the second stage with liquid fuel. Till April 2019, six successful trials of the missile have been completed.

Dhanush missile was produced by the DRDO and is a variant of surface to surface Prithvi III missile.

DRDO to double ASTRA’s range

The DRDO Chief, Mr G Sateesh Reddy recently announced that DRDO (Defence Research Development Organization) is to increase the range of ASTRA air-to-air missiles. India is one of the few countries to own a successful BMD-Ballistic Missile Defence programme.

ASTRA

Astra (Sanskrit word for weapon) is an all-weather air-to-air missile developed completely by DRDO. Currently, ASTRA is capable of engaging targets upto a distance of 110 km. The ASTRA missiles are integrated with Sukhoi Su-30 MKI aircrafts of India.

Now, DRDO plans to increase the range of the missile to 160 km. Apart from this, it is also planning to infuse technologies like solid fuel ramjet and dual pulse solid rocket motor. There are also plans to integrate the missiles with other aircrafts like Dassault, MiG-29, HAL Tejas.

Ballistic Missile Defence Programme

The BMD is an initiative to develop multi-layered defence systems to protect India from missile attacks. The programme was introduced in the light of threats from China and Pakistan. Prithvi and Ashwin are the two most successful BMD missiles developed under the programme.