21 Dec 21. Indian Air Force deploys first squadron of S-400 air defence system. The first squadron S-400 missile system is being deployed in the western state of Punjab.
Indian Air Force (IAF) has reportedly started deploying the first squadron of the S-400 Triumf air defence missile system.
According to an ANI report, the S-400 missile system is being deployed in the western state of Punjab.
A government official was quoted by the news agency as saying: “The first squadron is being deployed in the Punjab sector. The batteries of the first squadron would be capable of taking care of aerial threats from both Pakistan and China.”
This comes a month after it was reported that Russia commenced the deliveries of S-400 surface-to-air missile system to India. The deliveries related to the first squadron are expected to be completed by the end of this year.
Sources told ANI that the related equipment is being brought to India through sea and air routes.
Originally, India signed a purchase agreement in 2015 to procure the S-400 system. The $4.5bn deal was subsequently finalised in 2018.
The deal despite concerns raised by the US.
An upgraded version of the S-300 family of surface-to-air missile systems, the S-400 is designed to engage enemy aircraft, ballistic missiles and uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAV). It can be used to fire four different types of missiles with ranges 40km, 120km, 250km and 400km.
India is slated to receive five squadrons of this surface-to-air missile system.
Earlier this year, IAF officers went to Russia to receive training on the system. (Source: airforce-technology.com)
21 Dec 21. Pakistan tests homegrown missile with additional range. Pakistan’s military test-fired a homegrown Babur cruise missile on Tuesday that has a range of more than 900 kilometers (560 miles), twice the distance of an earlier missile of the same model, according to a military statement. The missile’s extended range further enhances nuclear-armed Pakistan’s military capability.
Pakistan and neighbor India, which also has a nuclear arsenal, have a volatile relationship, having fought three wars against each other. The military buildup of both countries is closely watched by a nervous international community as India and Pakistan have come dangerously close to a fourth war at least twice over the last two decades. The missile, dubbed the Babur Cruise Missile 1B, is domestically developed, said the military statement. An earlier version had the limited capacity to travel just 450 kilometers (280 miles). (Source: Defense News)
22 Dec 21. Northrop Grumman seeks to speed up HAWC programme. Northrop Grumman wants to accelerate the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) programme, on which it is teaming with Raytheon and the Pentagon, and predicts more flight tests in the next 12–18 months.
Rebecca Torzone, Northrop Grumman vice-president of missile products, told reporters on 15 December that a first flight test in September 2021 built confidence around HAWC and demonstrated that the weapon’s physics is possible. Much of the Northrop Grumman investment in a company facility in northeast Maryland is to prepare for the completion of design and technology maturation phases of the programme.
“We are looking to go into production,” Torzone said.
Northrop Grumman in July 2021 broke ground on a hypersonics capability centre at its Elkton, Maryland, facility, where it will provide full life-cycle production for hypersonic missile systems, according to a company statement. This full life-cycle production will include design and development through production and integration. (Source: Janes)
21 Dec 21. Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) successfully completed the second flight test of its new anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) missile, demonstrating capabilities that will meet key objectives for the upcoming Stand-in Attack Weapon (SiAW) program. The test was completed utilizing a company-owned CRJ-700 aircraft as the testbed for the air to surface mission computer and sensors. Northrop Grumman invested to actively mature and test its A2/AD missile design, which meets U.S. Air Force requirements for SiAW and other programs. Featuring open architecture interfaces, the Northrop Grumman solution will bridge current requirements while enabling rapid future upgrades to meet changing mission requirements.
“As a missile prime, we play a vital role in pioneering the most innovative solutions that increase survivability and lethality against new and emerging adversary threats,” said Mary Petryszyn, president, Northrop Grumman Defense Systems. “Our lean-forward approach enables us to innovate at rapid speeds while reducing cost for our customers.”
This second flight test demonstrated the mission capability of the missile sensor systems combined with the mission computer. This is the first of a new series of company funded flight tests which will continue to test the system with more stressing scenarios in preparation for the missile launch in 2022.
“We have taken significant steps to mature our missile design, providing capabilities for the U.S. Air Force SiAW program and other programs,” said Dan Olson, vice president and general manager, weapon systems, Northrop Grumman. “Leveraging our digital engineering expertise to accelerate timelines, our first complete missile is planned to be built and ready for launch in 2022.”
The Northrop Grumman A2/AD solution leverages lessons learned on the Navy’s AARGM-ER, engineering manufacturing and development, low-rate initial production and integration work on the F-35 aircraft. The Northrop Grumman A2/AD missile is capable of being integrated on a variety of aircraft.
21 Dec 21. Airobotics and ShotSpotter Partner to Offer Integrated Gunshot Detection and Real-time Aerial Video. Airobotics, an Israeli manufacturer of autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and aerial data systems, announced that it has signed an exclusive agreement with the American company ShotSpotter to sell and deploy its gunshot detection technology in Israel. Airobotics will offer an integrated solution for detecting, locating, and alerting police to gunfire incidents while providing live video footage and stills of the crime scene from UAVs in Israeli urban areas. Outdoor gunfire will be located by ShotSpotter’s network of acoustic sensors with precise coordinates communicated in real-time to Airobotics UAVs that will immediately fly to the scene providing critical visual information to first responders that are in route.
The issue of illegal firearms, and in particular shootings, is at the heart of the public debate in Israel. Between 2017 and 2020, approximately 5,200 shooting cases were opened, with only 575 indictments filed. Indictments were not filed in two thirds of cases because the shooter was unknown.
“Airobotics believes that integrating with ShotSpotter, the leader in gunshot detection, will provide a better technological solution for dealing with gunfire crime in Israel,” said Meir Kliner, CEO of Airobotics. “This partnership is another step in the company’s strategy to expand the scope of its activities by providing solutions for emergency response, security, and flight in urban areas.”
Airobotics has developed an autonomous UAV system capable of performing missions 24/7 without human intervention. The company has extensive experience with tens of thousands of UAV flight hours, and transfer of live video that gives law enforcement the essential data they need to act quickly, accurately and safely. Unlike other UAVs on the market today, Airobotics’ UAVs can take off and return to a dedicated docking station, replacing battery and/or sensors and take off again, even in harsh environmental conditions, and all without human intervention.
ShotSpotter has been detecting gunfire for law enforcement for 25 years and is deployed in more than 120 cities in the US, South Africa and the Caribbean. The system analyzes loud, impulsive sounds detected by its acoustic sensors using a combination of artificial intelligence and human review to locate the sounds and determine if they are gunshots with a high degree of accuracy. The entire process from trigger pull to published alert takes place in less than 60 seconds.
“ShotSpotter is excited to partner with Airobotics to develop a new market and help Israeli law enforcement respond more quickly and precisely to incidents of gunfire,” said Ralph A. Clark, President and CEO of ShotSpotter. “Every second counts, and our alerts combined with Airobotics ‘eyes in the sky’ increase the likelihood of locating a victim and saving their life, finding critical evidence and more proactively addressing gun violence in Israel.” (Source: UAS VISION)
20 Dec 21. India’s DRDO tests Agni P nuclear capable ballistic missile. The latest flight test follows successful firing of the canisterised missile in June this year. The Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) has announced the second flight test of the new generation nuclear capable ballistic missile, Agni-P. Conducted by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the flight test took place from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Island off the Odisha coast of Odisha on 18 December.
The firing demonstrated performance of all the advanced technologies integrated within the system. The MoD noted that the ballistic missile was ‘tracked and monitored’ by several telemetry, radar, electro-optical stations, and down range vessels positioned along the eastern coast.
All the mission objectives were met with high accuracy and the nuclear capable ballistic missile followed textbook trajectory in the latest flight test, the ministry noted.
DRDO chairman G Satheesh Reddy congratulated the team and appreciated the team’s efforts on the second development flight trial.
A two-stage solid propellant missile, Agni P features dual redundant navigation and guidance system. It is a ‘canisterised’ surface-to-surface missile with a 1,000km to 2,000km range and is said to be designed to hit enemy vessels located as far as in the Indo-Pacific. The Agni series of ballistic missiles are developed under the DRDO’s Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). The Agni missile family comprises of series ranging from I to IV and Agni-V. In June this year, DRDO tested Agni P advanced ballistic missile variant from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam island. (Source: army-technology.com)
20 Dec 21. The Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) and Raytheon Technologies Next Generation Interceptor (NGI) team has completed its System Requirements Review (SRR) and is proceeding with initial system design, further risk reduction testing, and critical component qualification activities. The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) approved the SRR, which was completed ahead of schedule, and is the first major technical review for the Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Technologies NGI homeland defense interceptor program. This achievement comes after Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Technologies demonstrated its NGI Common Software Factory, which enables rapid development, integration and delivery in a DevSecOps environment.
“We’re leveraging our two decades of performance on the current Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI),” said Scott Lehr, vice president and general manager, launch and missile defense systems, Northrop Grumman. “With our combined workforce, extensive expertise and state-of-the-art facilities, we will deliver a highly capable new interceptor that will protect our nation against long-range missile threats for decades to come.”
The Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Technologies team is leveraging high-fidelity model-based systems engineering, and hardware manufacturing in customer-certified facilities. The team is also conducting internally-funded risk reduction hardware development and testing to ensure deployment of NGI in the rapid timeline the nation requires.
“Raytheon is the nation’s provider of kill vehicle payloads that maneuver in space to destroy missile threats, with 47 successful exo-atmospheric intercepts achieved to date,” said Tay Fitzgerald, vice president of Strategic Missile Defense, Raytheon Missiles & Defense. “Our digital system design approach gives us high confidence in our solution going into the preliminary design review.”
The Northrop Grumman-led NGI team brings flight-proven missile defense experience to the NGI program, including expertise in: ground systems, battle management, command and control, interceptor boost vehicles, kill vehicles, agile processes and certified manufacturing capabilities. The team is committed to delivering a highly capable, affordable and low-risk NGI solution that meets the customer’s schedule and mission requirements.
About Raytheon Missiles & Defense
Raytheon Missiles & Defense brings global customers the most advanced end-to-end solutions delivering the advantage of one innovative partner to detect, track, and intercept threats. With a broad portfolio of air and missile defense systems, precision weapons, radars, command and control systems and advanced defense technologies. Raytheon Missiles & Defense solutions protect citizens, warfighters and infrastructure in more than fifty countries around the world.
About Northrop Grumman
Northrop Grumman is a technology company, focused on global security and human discovery. Our pioneering solutions equip our customers with capabilities they need to connect, advance and protect the U.S. and its allies. Driven by a shared purpose to solve our customers’ toughest problems, our 90,000 employees define possible every day.
17 Dec 21. USAF’s Rapid Dragon completes final flight test. The Rapid Dragon programme is an experimentation campaign led by the Air Force SDPE office. The US Air Force’s (USAF) Rapid Dragon programme has successfully completed its final flight test at the Eglin Air Force Base Overwater Test Range. For this flight test conducted on 16 December, USAF tested a current inventory cruise missile equipped with a live warhead. Rapid Dragon showcased the ability to employ weapons making use of regular airdrop procedures from cargo aircraft leveraging the Rapid Dragon Palletized Weapon System. Under the Rapid Dragon programme, this is the first live-fire test deployed from a cargo airplane. During this test, an MC-130J flown by an operational flight crew of Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) received new targeting data while in-flight. This data was then transferred to the cruise missile flight test vehicle (FTV). Rapid Dragon programme was previously designated as the ‘Palletized Munitions Program’.
It is an experimentation campaign led by the Air Force Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation (SDPE) office.
Air Force Research Laboratory commander major general Heather Pringle said: “This type of experimentation campaign, that address capability gaps and demonstrates transformative efforts, helps us shape future requirements and reduces timeline to fielding.
“This approach ultimately enables a rapid fielding alternative to traditional lengthy acquisition timelines.”
According to the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), the MC-130J aircrew airdropped a four-cell Rapid Dragon deployment system once inside the drop zone over the Gulf of Mexico.
This deployment system consisted of FTV and three mass simulants.
In the past five months, the programme conducted five system-level flight tests using MC-130J, EC-130SJ, and C-17A.
The SDPE office and partners Air Force Futures, AFSOC, AMC, US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Det 1, and the 412th Test Wing completed the first system-level flight tests on EC-130SJ and C-17A airlift aircraft.
SDPE Rapid Dragon programme manager Dean Evans said: “Rapid Dragon is a prime example of a government/industry partnership that embraces this acceleration mindset, building a community of subject matter experts and executing an aggressive, but well-thought-out, experimentation campaign.
“This accomplishment is a testament to what an agile US Air Force and industry team can do when it is empowered to do business differently.”
In August, the Rapid Dragon programme conducted its first system-level flight tests to assess the operational utility of the palletised munition deployment system. (Source: airforce-technology.com)
16 Dec 21. US Navy to pick new torpedo in March 2022 following delay. Northrop Grumman says it submitted its Very Lightweight Torpedo proposal in November. The Navy is planning to award a contract in March 2022 for a new lightweight torpedo, a major milestone for the first new torpedo the service will field in over two decades.
David Portner, senior program manager for undersea weapons at Northrop Grumman, told Breaking Defense in an interview on Wednesday the consortium managing the competition published the request for proposals in October for the springtime award. Breaking Defense reported earlier this year that a congressional budget cut had forced the Navy to delay the solicitation, which was originally scheduled to be released in January 2021.
The solicitation was not made public at the time of release, but the Navy told Breaking Defense for the previous report that the competition had been postponed until the fall. A Navy spokesman did not immediately respond to questions about the solicitation for this report.
The competition is for the Compact Rapid Attack Weapon and is being managed by the Undersea Technology Innovation Consortium, a group of defense companies curated by the Navy and ranging in size from small firms to major primes. Only members of the consortium will be able to submit proposals for the torpedo competition.
One of the primary advantages of running the competition through the consortium, rather than a standard acquisition process, is the group is operated under other transaction authority, a power established and approved by Congress that enables the service to more rapidly develop and purchase worthwhile capabilities.
Portner said Northrop submitted a proposal for its Very Lightweight Torpedo in November, a weapon that has been designed and developed in partnership with Penn State. As its name suggest, Northrop’s VLWT weighs roughly 200 pounds, one third the weight a traditional 600-pound torpedo. Practically, this widens the aperture of platforms capable of employing the weapon to smaller vessels or aircraft, and it also increases the number of torpedoes that any given platform can carry.
It is not clear which companies Northrop is competing against because the Navy does not routinely disclose the names of contractors that respond to requests for proposals.
The strength of Northrop’s design, according to Portner, is the weapon’s modularity, which segregates the weapon into four compartments. This enables the company or the Navy to upgrade certain components without having to redesign the torpedo wholesale.
The technology was originally developed and marketed as the “anti-torpedo torpedo” and was installed onto five aircraft carriers. In 2018, the service canceled that program and has been working to remove ATT from its ships ever since. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Breaking Defense)
16 Dec 21. USAF, Raytheon ready AIM-120D-3 for guided live-fire test campaign. The US Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) at Eglin Air Force Base (AFB), Florida, in association with Raytheon Missiles & Defense, is preparing for a series of air-launched guided live-fire trials of the new variant AIM-120D-3 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM).
“The live-fire test campaign will begin in February 2022 with the work-up missions,” a Raytheon spokesperson told Janes . “There are five live fires as part of this campaign and these are scheduled for Q2–Q4 2022, with current planning to shoot from the [US Air Force] F-15E Strike Eagle and [US Navy] F/A-18F [Super Hornet] platforms.”
The AIM-120D-3 delivers a significant capability upgrade through the Form, Fit, Function Refresh (F3R) programme – a comprehensive AMRAAM Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages project, designed to mitigate systemic hardware obsolescence issues in the AIM-120D’s guidance section, and sustain AMRAAM missile production beyond Lot 32, awarded in March 2018. (Source: Janes)
16 Dec 21. South Korea deploys new SPAAG system. The Republic of Korea (RoK) Armed Forces has started deployment of a new 30mm self-propelled anti-aircraft gun (SPAAG) system produced by Hanwha Defense.
The Defence Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced on 15 December that Hanwha Defense has delivered an initial batch of the systems that were ordered in June 2020 for KRW250bn (USD211m).
The SPAAG, based on the chassis of Hyundai Rotem’s K808 8×8 armoured vehicle, will replace the 20 mm M167 Vulcan Air Defense System that has been operational for more than 40 years in South Korea’s army, air force, and marine corps. The SPAAG is expected to replace the M167 in stages, till the early 2030s. Speaking to Janes, a South Korean military official said that a total of 300 SPAAGs would be deployed across the RoK Armed Forces. (Source: Janes)
15 Dec 21. Public-private team in Turkey unveils drone with laser gun. A public-private partnership in Turkey claims it has created the world’s first drone armed with a laser weapon. The Eren was on display at the Konya Science Festival on Dec. 9. However, neither Tubitak nor Asisguard would provide information about the system’s technical data and specifications. The drone was built by a partnership between Turkey’s state-run scientific research institute Tubitak and the private company Asisguard. The development program was administered by the Criminal Department of Turkey’s General Directorate of Security.
Aykut Eroglu, a senior police officer familiar with the program, told Turkey’s state-run news agency Anadolu that Eren’s laser weapon would primarily target enemies’ military ammunition stockpiles and bombs in the field.
“This is the first of its kind worldwide,” Eroglu had said.
The Eren recently passed firing tests, during which it used its laser for 90 seconds at a distance of 500 meters, 30 seconds at 300 meters and 10 seconds at 100 meters.
Asisguard is considered an up and coming drone specialist in the country. The company previously developed the Songar, which received upgrades in February. As part of the upgrade program, the small Turkish defesne firm Akdaş installed a 40mm grenade launcher to the Songar. The upgraded Songar is armed with the AK40-GL system and has a firing range of 400 meters. The drone successfully passed acceptance tests.
Several state-controlled and private Turkish companies have worked on directed-energy technology since 2010. Ozgur Eksi, an Ankara-based defense analyst, told Defense News earlier this year that from an operational point of view, directed-energy weapons are meant to increase fire power, serve as a deterrent, and complement armed and unarmed drone warfare development.
“Drone warfare architecture may be the most critical operational use, especially for asymmetrical warfare inside Turkey or in cross-border operations [in Syria and Iraq],” Eksi said.
Turkey has been fighting Kurdish insurgents since 1984 — a conflict that has seen tens of thousands of people die, including civilians. The Turkish military has targeted the group in northern Iraq and Syria. (Source: Defense News)
15 Dec 21. US Navy uses laser weapon to destroy floating target. The USS Portland successfully test-fired its laser weapon demonstrator at a floating target in the Gulf of Aden, the US Navy said.
The US Navy has used a laser weapon to destroy a floating target in the Middle East.
The demonstration on Tuesday saw the USS Portland test-fire its Laser Weapon System Demonstrator at the target in the Gulf of Aden.
In a statement, the Middle East-based 5th Fleet described the laser as having “successfully engaged” the “static surface” target.
Images released by the navy show the test-fire as a beam of light being fired from the ship, with sailors on board wearing special glasses.
Previously, the amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland used the laser to bring down a flying drone in May 2020.
It comes as laser and radiofrequency weapons demonstrators are set to be developed for the British military.
It was announced in September that contracts worth about £72.5m were awarded to UK industry to develop such technology.
Known as Directed Energy Weapons (DEW), it is thought they could revolutionise the battlefield by using ‘cutting-edge’ laser and radiofrequency weapons technology, leading to a reduced risk of collateral damage. (Source: forces.net)
15 Dec 21. MBDA completes final test firing of Marte ER anti-ship missile. Marte is designed and built by MBDA to meet the needs of naval forces in modern combat missions. MBDA has successfully completed the final test firing of the Marte extended range (ER) anti-ship missile, which was conducted late last month. The test-firing marked a major milestone in the Marte ER’s validation and development. It was conducted at an Italian test range in Sardinia. This final testing showcased the new missile’s performance level and reliability. For the testing, MBDA used a telemetric production standard missile equipped with complete functional capabilities and production hardware. However, the company noted that the event saw the use of an inert warhead in place of a live one. The ground-based launching system used was also in its last phase of hardware and software configuration. The missile executed a long-range sea skimming flight with the support of its mission planning software. MBDA said that the missile made ‘three main turns and a pop-up / dive manoeuvre’ during its final turn, when a straight segment led to the activation point of the radio frequency (RF) seeker. The latest launch of the missile witnessed rapid target identification, selection and tracking. The terminal phase of the missile successfully executed manoeuvring of its anti-Close-in Weapon Systems. The target, which was hit at high transonic speed, was lying just above the water line. This phase showcased its terminal guidance’s effectiveness with a new solid state RF Seeker. MBDA said it also demonstrated the behaviour of the missile’s turbojet engine, which was considered to be ‘excellent for both in-flight start time and thrust level’. This firing is the last in Marte ER development. The missile is expected to become operational early next year. MBDA completed the second test firing of the Marte ER anti-ship missile in February last year. Built by MBDA, Marte is designed to meet the modern combat mission requirements of naval forces. (Source: naval-technology.com)
14 Dec 21. IRGC Navy receives another batch of attack boats. Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) announced on 11 December that 110 attack boats had been delivered to its naval wing in a ceremony attended by its commander, Major General Hossein Salami.
Although only low-quality imagery was released of the event, aerial footage confirmed that 110 boats were lined up for the ceremony at the IRGC Navy’s (IRGCN’s) base in Bandar Abbas. The majority were types that are already in service, including the rigid-hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) known as the Ashoura. Some Ashouras were displayed for the first time fitted with what were identified as launch tubes for torpedoes.
Several new types of fast attack craft armed with anti-ship missiles were also displayed, including four that appeared to be powered by waterjets. Satellite imagery of most of the boats already lined up for the ceremony on 7 December showed these are approximately 14m long. (Source: Janes)
14 Dec 21. India’s DRDO launches SMAT system off Odisha coast. SMAT is an advanced ‘missile-based standoff torpedo delivery system’ designed to boost ASW capability. India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has tested a long-range Supersonic Missile Assisted Torpedo (SMAT) system. The test was executed from Wheeler Island off the coast of Balasore in Odisha on 13 December. In a statement, the Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that the SMAT system is an advanced ‘missile-based standoff torpedo delivery system’. It is designed to improve the Indian Navy’s anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capability beyond the torpedo’s conventional range.
The MoD stated: “This was a text book launch, where the entire trajectory was monitored by the electro-optic telemetry system, various range radars, including the down range instrumentation and down range ships.”
The canister-based missile system carried a torpedo, parachute delivery system, and other release mechanisms.
Launched from ground mobile launcher, the missile system can cover a wide range of distances.
This missile system comprises two-stage solid propulsion, electro-mechanical (EM) actuators and precision inertial navigation.
Several technologies have been developed by DRDO laboratories for this missile system.
On the successful test of the SMAT missile, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated the team associated and said that the latest development ‘is a perfect example of building futuristic defence systems in the country’.
DRDO chairman G Satheesh Reddy also congratulated the team and said that the SMAT missile system will further promote self-reliance in defence.
Last month, the Indian Navy received advanced EW system Shakti, designed and developed by DRDO’s Defence Electronics Research Laboratory in Hyderabad. (Source: naval-technology.com)
13 Dec 21. DRDO and Indian Air Force flight-test indigenous SANT missile. The SANT missile has been designed and developed by DRDO laboratory Research Centre Imarat in Hyderabad. The Indian Air Force (IAF) and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) have successfully flight-tested the indigenously developed helicopter-launched stand-off anti-tank (SANT) missile. The missile was tested from Rajasthan’s Pokhran firing ranges in India on 11 December.
According to the information posted by the Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD), the flight-testing was successful in meeting all the objectives of the mission. During the trial, the tracking algorithms, all avionics with integrated software, release mechanism, and advanced guidance monitored all mission events.
DRDO chairman G Satheesh Reddy said that the SANT missile test would further advance India’s indigenous defence capabilities.
On the successful test-firing of the missile, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has congratulated the team associated with the flight test of the missile.
In a statement, the MoD said: “The indigenous development of various configurations for different applications with advanced technologies is a firm march towards ‘Aatmanirbharta’ in defence.”
DRDO laboratory Research Centre Imarat (RCI) in Hyderabad has designed and developed the SANT missile.
RCI developed the missile in cooperation with other DRDO laboratories, alongside participation from other industry partners. The missile features an advanced millimetre wave (MMW) seeker that provides high precision strike capability from a safer distance and is capable of neutralising targets within a 10km range. It is the third in a series of indigenous stand-off weapons that have been tested recently. Separately, the DRDO and the Indian Army tested Pinaka Extended Range (Pinaka-ER), Area Denial Munitions (ADM) and indigenously developed fuses. The performance evaluation trials were conducted at Field Firing Ranges last week. (Source: airforce-technology.com)
07 Dec 21. The DITA 155mm SPH (self-propelled howitzer) from Excalibur Army of Czechia (the Czech Republic) might just be the shape of artillery to come, writes Bob Morrison. First unveiled at IDEX in the UAE in February 2021, though it would be MSPO in Poland in September before we caught up with it, the DITA is a functional concept artillery system which mates a 155mm NATO calibre unmanned gun turret to a proven Tatra 8×8 vehicle chassis with armoured two-man cab; it is the natural successor to the Czechoslovakian 152mm DANA SPH, which entered service four decades ago and still serves with three of the younger NATO nations.
My first impression on seeing the futuristic DITA prototype in Poland ~ it would later be displayed at IDET in Brno, but we did not get there this time ~ was simply “Wow!”. When I then discovered the vehicle has been designed to be operated by just a driver and gunner, and watched its operator standing outside using the M4 Onboard Control System detachable panel to elevate and lay the weapon, which has a 40-round magazine and automatic loading system, I was even more impressed.
With basic dimensions of 13,020mm long over barrel by 3,085mm wide by 3,122mm high over turret, DITA has a gross vehicle weight of 29 tonnes. Powered by a TATRA T3C-928-90 engine developing 300kW it has a design top road speed of 90km/hr, with a cruising range of 600km, and an off-road speed of 25 km/hr should be achievable over good terrain. Fording depth without preparation is 1,200mm, a 2,000mm trench can be crossed, a 470mm step can be climbed and a 30° gradient can be tackled.
The cab of the DITA shown here offers ballistic protection to STANAG 4569 Level 1 and NBC protection through a high performance over-pressure ventilation, heating and air-conditioning system. There is provision for a third crew member to travel in the turret, if necessary or desirable, and the weapon system can also be operated from there in an emergency. An auxiliary 24-Volt hydraulic power unit serves as the main source for the weapon systems and for turret operation. The gun, which has a range of 39km, can elevate to 70° and depress to -3° (primarily for barrel cleaning, but direct fire mode is also possible) and is traversable by ±60° and a sustained rate of fire of five rounds per minute is achievable. According to the spec sheet, the Onboard Control System (OCS) contains “subsystems of diagnostics, navigation, automatic gun guiding, autonomous calculation of shooting elements and ammunition management”. Both the OCS and the automatic loader are controlled through an M4 control panel, which can be removed from the dashboard for remote operation.
Although the DITA gun turret has been mounted on a Tatra truck chassis, it has been designed from the outset to be autonomous and could be dropped onto any other suitable heavy duty truck or even a tracked chassis instead. With several NATO nations, including the UK, currently looking at replacing legacy self-propelled howitzers and as both France (CAESAR) and Sweden (ARCHER) have already proven the wheeled 155mm SPH concept, this Czech prototype might well be the shape of things to come. (Source: Joint Forces)
10 Dec 21. US Army’s PrSM enters EMD phase. The US Army Contracting Command at Redstone Arsenal has awarded Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control a USD23.9m contract for engineering and manufacturing development (EMD), and Early Operational Capability Lot 1 missiles – currently in Milestone B – of the Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) weapon system. The contract – the estimated completion of which is late April 2025 – is a modification to an earlier USD20m contract awarded by the army in April for the procurement of long-lead item materials needed to support the development, testing, and qualification of the PrSM system. Milestone B is a Milestone Decision Authority-led review at the end of the Technology Maturation and Risk Reduction (TMRR) phase in the defence acquisition process. The 1 December contract moves the PrSM programme from the TMRR phase to the EMD phase, where the development of system will be matured – including full system integration, developing the manufacturing processes, completing system fabrication, and test and evaluation of the system – before proceeding to the Production and Deployment phase.The US Army has requested USD166 m in fiscal year 2022 for 110 Precision Strike Missiles. PrSM is an accelerated US Army initiative, dating from March 2017, to develop and field an all-weather long-range precision strike capability, using ground-launched missile-delivered indirect fires, to engage imprecisely located area and point targets. Lockheed Martin’s PrSM solution features a new insensitive munitions solid rocket motor developed by Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems, and an enhanced lethality warhead for the PrSM target set. Guidance is delivered by advanced inertial navigation supported by a GPS capability. (Source: Janes)
08 Dec 21. Turkey begins delivery of Atmaca anti-ship cruise missile. Turkey has begun deliveries of its indigenous Atmaca (Hawk) anti-ship cruise missiles to the Turkish Navy Forces Command (TNFC), İsmail Demir, head of Turkey’s Presidency of Defence Industries (SSB), has confirmed. Speaking to reporters at the Global Strategies in Defence and Aerospace Industry Conference, held in Antalya on 4–5 December, Demir said the first platform to deploy Atmaca will be TCG Kınalıada, the fourth MilGem Ada-class corvette, which was delivered to the TNFC in 2019. Atmaca, developed by Roketsan, is a high-precision, long-range, surface-to-surface, precision-strike anti-ship missile that can be integrated on patrol boats, frigates, and corvettes. Atmaca is 5.2m in length, 350 mm in diameter, and has a deployed wingspan of 1.4m. It weighs less than 800 kg, including a 250 kg-class high-explosive penetrating warhead, and has a range of more than 220km. Meanwhile, the indigenous Akya 533mm heavyweight torpedo, also manufactured by Roketsan, will begin entering the TNFC inventory in 2022, Demir said. (Source: Janes)
10 Dec 21. Pakistan Navy test fires surface-to-air missiles in Karachi. Hitting their targets successfully, the missiles are claimed to demonstrate the war preparedness of the country. The air defence units showcased the war preparedness through live firing of surface-to-air missiles. Credit: Pakistan Navy. Pakistan’s Navy has successfully carried out test firing of surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) at Karachi, demonstrating the country’s naval combat readiness. The air defence units of the Pakistan Navy showcased the its war preparedness through Ground-Based Air Defence (GBAD) live firing of these missiles.
The spokesperson for the Pakistan Navy said that the missiles hit their targets successfully. This event was witnessed by the chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Mohammed Amjad Khan Niazi, who was briefed on the Pakistan Navy’s operational readiness with the induction of SAMs and developments being undertaken to boost security. Meanwhile, Pakistan Navy also held steel cutting ceremony of Hangor Class (Type 039B) Submarine 5 at Karachi shipyard.
Capable of attacking several targets at a time, this submarine forms part of Pakistan’s agreement with China for eight submarines. Construction of the eight submarines is being divided between Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works and China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation.
Out of the eight submarines, four will be built at Karachi shipyard.
The first of the new submarines constructed in China is expected to be delivered to the Pakistan Navy by next year. Construction of the four submarines in Karachi is expected to last until 2028. Type 039B class is the third member of the Type 039A series. The Type 039A too features the same tail design as that of Type 039 (Song class) with a single shaft and four diving plane. These eight Hangor Class submarines will more than double the count of fleet of submarines of the Pakistan Navy. (Source: naval-technology.com)