Three rounds of Russian air-to-air short range missiles were test fired by the Indian Air Force (IAF) as part of the user trail on Tuesday, Indian Express reported.
“The Russian missiles were fired from fighter aircraft targeting the floating objects released from unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Lakshya flown from the launching complex-II of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur-on-sea,” the report quoted an unnamed official from the Defence Research Development Organization (DRDO) as saying.
“Altogether six aircraft which included Sukhoi and MiG 29 were engaged in the exercise. The missiles released from pilotless target aircraft (PTA) were to destroy two bodies. Two aircraft each in every round was engaged wherein one acted as an attacker and the other chaser. After the attacker aircraft fired the missile, the chaser would track its movement and precision of firing,” the official said.
While the whole exercise was carried out by the personnel of IAF, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) provided logistic support.
The test was aimed at gauging the suitability and efficiency of the weapon system. The Russian missiles have the capability to efficiently engage targets at a range of 15 km at minimum altitude in less than 10 seconds. The missiles used for the test were selected randomly from the lot, said the official adding that more rounds of tests have been planned on Wednesday and Thursday.
This mission was crucial for the IAF as last year an Air Force troupe had to wind up their air defence exercise at the test facility here as three trials of the five attempts made to engage aerial targets by a Russian surface-to-air missile (SAM) failed.