Tejas, India’s indigenous Light Combat Aircraft, test fired an Israel-developed fifth generation Python-5 Air-to-Air Missile (AAM) on April 27, 2021.
Trials were also aimed to validate enhanced capability of already integrated Derby Beyond Visual Range (BVR) AAM on Tejas. The test firing at Goa completed a series of missile trials to validate its performance under extremely challenging scenarios. Derby missile achieved direct hit on a high speed maneuvering aerial target and the Python missiles also achieved 100% hits, thereby validating their complete capability, state-run DRDO said in a release Wednesday.
The trials met all their planned objectives.
Prior to these trials, extensive missile carriage flight tests were conducted at Bengaluru to assess integration of the missile with aircraft systems on board the Tejas, like Avionics, Fire-control radar, Missile Weapon Delivery System and the Flight Control System.
At Goa, after successful separation trials, live launch of the missile on a Banshee target was carried out. Python-5 missile live firing was conducted to validate target engagement from all aspects as well as beyond visual ranges. In all the live firings, missile hit the aerial target.
The missiles were fired from Tejas aircraft of Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) flown by Indian Air Force (IAF) Test pilots belonging to National Flight Test Centre (NFTC).