Home Pakistan China India developing 160 km-range Astra missile to get an edge over China, Pakistan – India Today

India developing 160 km-range Astra missile to get an edge over China, Pakistan – India Today

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Seeking to score a long edge over its adversaries – China and Pakistan, India is developing the Astra Mark 2 missile which will allow its fighter aircraft to destroy enemy planes from 160 kms in aerial combat, senior defence official said.
Astra is a beyond visual range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM), which flies over four times the speed of sound at Mach 4.5, and efforts are now on to integrate the over 100 km strike range missile on the indigenous fighter aircraft LCA Tejas, sources said.
The all-weather day and night capable Astra, which currently has a strike range of around 100-km, will eventually replace the expensive Russian, French and Israeli BVRAAMs that are currently imported to arm IAF fighters, sources added.
“The missile’s trials are set to begin from September this year and will be completed by the next year. Astra Mark 2 would give India an edge over its adversaries – Pakistan and China. We are hoping to see the missile fully developed by 2022,” senior defence officials told India Today.

The Indian Air Force and Navy have already given orders for Astra Mark-2 missiles.

The missile has also helped India join the ranks of the US, Russia, France and Israel in developing such complex BVRAAMs capable of detecting, tracking and destroying highly-agile hostile supersonic fighters packed with “counter-measures’’ at long ranges, sources said.
“Astra has excellent ECCM (electronic counter-counter measures) to tackle jamming by hostile aircraft, active radar terminal guidance and other features for high single-shot kill probability in both “head-on and tail-chase” modes,” Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) said.

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