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Top 10 Weapon Systems Developed by DRDO

Top 10 Weapon Systems Developed by DRDO

1. AGNI-V - Inter Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM)

Agni-V is a inter-continental Ballistic Missile with a range more than 5000 km. Agni-V is part of the Agni series of missiles. It is a solid fuelled and can be launched from a canister Tatra Truck. So It can be launched within five minutes of threat received. It can carry a nuclear war head of 1.5 tons.

This missile is the biggest achievement of DRDO and it is very important for the nuclear deterrent and strategic posturing. Agni-V would also carry MIRV (multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles) payloads being concurrently developed.

With this missile in armory India can Strike any part of China and Pakistan from its territory. This missile was a result of more than 30 years research in missile technology. This missile has put India in the elite club of nations who possess Inter Continental Ballistic Missiles. This missile can be used for India’s ballistic missile defense shield.

Project Status: Under Trials

2. Light Combat Aircraft - TEJAS

This is the costliest and longest going programme of DRDO. It is a 4+ generation fighter plane developed by Aeronautical Development Agency. Tejas is a lightweight multi-role jet fighter. It is a tailless, compound delta wing design powered by a single engine. It came from the LCA programme, which began in the 1980s to replace India’s aging MiG-21 fighters.

It integrates technologies such as relaxed static stability, fly-by-wire flight control system, multi-mode radar, integrated digital avionics system, composite material structures, and a flat rated engine. It is supersonic and highly maneuverable, and is the smallest and lightest in its class of contemporary combat aircraft. Navy and trainer variant of the plane has also been developed and they have received initial operational clearance.

To keep is mind the future requirements of the country, ADA is currently working on Mark-II and Mark-III of Tejas aircraft. These versions will have 5th generation features such as stealth, upgraded avionics, modified aerodynamic designs and AESA radar.

Project Status: Initial Operational Clearance is given (IOC) for production

3. INS ARIHANT - Nuclear Powered Ballistic Missile Submarine

The Arihant class is a class of nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines being built for the Indian Navy. The lead vessel of the class, INS Arihant, was first launched in 2009 and began sea trials in December 2014. Four vessels are planned and are expected to be in commission by 2023.

The Arihant-class vessels are India’s first indigenously designed and built nuclear submarine. There are only 4-5 countries have technical capabilities to developing a nuclear powered submarines. So it’s a big technical breakthrough for the development of larger submarines in the future.

Arihant has four vertical launch tubes, which can carry twelve (three per launch tube) smaller K-15 missiles or four larger K-4 missiles. The K-4 is a longer range missile (3,500 km) and it is undergoing trials. Submarine will be fitted with USHUS sonar, developed by DRDO lab, for detecting and tracking enemy submarines, surface vessels, and torpedoes and can be used for underwater communication and avoiding obstacles.

Project Status: Under See Trials

4. RUSTOM - II - Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

Rustom is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) being developed by Aeronautical Development Establishment in Bangalore for the three services of the Indian Armed Forces. Rustom-II is developed by India on the lines of the American Predator drones.

I will be equipped with air to surface medium range missiles to destroy enemy targets. For target acquisition and ranging it has sophisticated Medium & Long Range Electro-Optical Payloads, Laser Ranger Finders with high resolution and precision stabilized platforms.

Rustom-II is equipped with various advanced technologies and systems which includes Digital Flight Control and Navigation System, Automatic Take off and Landing, Digital communication technologies for revealing data links to control and operate the mission and relay UAVs.

Project Status: Under Trials

5. ARJUN - Main Battle Tank

The MBT Arjun is a third generation main battle tank developed by Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE), a DRDO lab in Chennai, for the Indian Army.

The Arjun features a 120 mm main rifled gun with indigenously developed Armour-piercing fin-stabilized discarding-sabot ammunition, one 7.62 mm coaxial machine gun, and a 12.7 mm machine gun. It has a four-man crew. Automatic fire detection and suppression and NBC protection systems are included. Arjun Tank is equipped with high resolution day and night vision devices which is supported by laser range finder.

The Mark-2 of Arjun has been developed which is an advanced third generation main battle tank and an upgraded version of the Arjun main battle tank with several improvements. Its development was completed in 2 years owing to experience gained from developing the first version. The top speed of the tank would be at 60 km/hr compared to 40 km/hr in Arjun mark 1. It had outclassed the T-90 during the trials. The new variant possesses superior missile firing capabilities and can fire missiles accurately up to a range of 2 km.

Project Status: Under Production

6. BRAHMOS -  Super Sonic Cruise Missile

The BrahMos has been developed as a joint venture between the Defence Research and Development Organization of India and the Federal State Unitary Enterprise of Russia under BrahMos Aerospace. The missile is named after two rivers, the Brahmaputra and the Moskva.

It is the world’s fastest cruise missile in operation. The missile travels at speeds of Mach 2.8 to 3.0. The land-launched and ship-launched versions are already in service, with the air and submarine-launched versions currently in the testing phase. An air-launched variant of BrahMos( Fitted with Su-30 MKI) is planned which is expected to come out in 2016 and will make India the only country with supersonic cruise missiles in their army, navy, and air force.

A hypersonic version of the missile namely BrahMos-II is also presently under development with speed of Mach 7 to boost aerial fast strike capability. It is expected to be ready for testing by 2017.

Like the BrahMos, the range of BrahMos II has also been limited to 290 km to comply with the MTCR. With a speed of Mach 7, it will have double the speed of the current BrahMos missile, and it will be the fastest hypersonic missile in the world.

Project Status: Under Production for all the three services

7. NIRBHAY - Medium Range Subsonic Cruise Missile

Nirbhay is a long range, subsonic cruise missile developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation’s premier laboratory Aeronautical Development Establishment in Bangalore. Nirbhay is an all-weather low-cost long-range cruise missile with stealth and high accuracy. The missile has a range of more than 1000 km and It can be launched from a mobile launcher. It starts flying off as a rocket and then turns into an aircraft. For that it has foldable wings.

It is capable of being launched from multiple platforms on land, sea and air and shall be inducted into Indian Navy, Army, and Air Force. In particular, Nirbhay is being adapted for the Su-30MKI. The missile is capable of carrying nuclear warheads. The missile supplements Brahmos by delivering warheads farther than the 290 km range of Brahmos. This missile can fly at the height of a tree so its difficult to catch it by enemy radar.

The development of this missile is a breakthrugh for India as this missile is comparable to Pakistan’s Babur and USAs Tomhawk. It will be mounted on Su-30 MKI which will make the fighter planes more lethal.

Project Status: Under Trials

8. DHRUV - Advanced Light Helicopter

The Dhruv Helicopters have evolved from The Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) program for an indigenous 5-ton multirole helicopter was initiated in May 1979 by the Indian Air Force and Indian Naval Air Arm. HAL were given a contract by the Indian government in 1984 to develop the helicopter.

The Dhruv has become the first major Indian weapons system to have secured large foreign sales. In 2004 HAL stated that it hoped to sell 120 Dhruvs over the next eight years, and has been displaying the Dhruv at airshows.

With a unit price at least 15 percent less than its rivals, the Dhruv has elicited interest in many countries, mostly from Latin America, Africa, West Asia, South East Asia and the Pacific Rim nations. Air forces from around 35 countries have made inquiries, along with requests for demonstrations. Flight certification for Europe and North America is also been planned in order to tap the large civilian market there.

Project Status: Under Trials

9. Ballistic Missile Defence System

Prithvi Advanced Air Defence System is for engaging the targets in the exo-atmosphere region

The Indian Ballistic Missile Defence Programme is an initiative to develop and deploy a multi-layered ballistic missile defence system to protect from ballistic missile attacks. It is a very ambitious and technology intensive project as this kind of capabilities are with only 2-3 countries in the world.

Introduced in light of the ballistic missile threat from Pakistan and China, it is a double-tiered system consisting of two interceptor missiles, namely the Prithvi Air Defence (PAD) missile for high altitude interception, and the Advanced Air Defence (AAD) Missile for lower altitude interception. The two-tiered shield should be able to intercept any incoming missile launched 5,000 kilometres away.

Advanced Air Defence System is for engaging the targets in the endo-atmosphere region

The two-tiered BMD System consists of the PAD, which will intercept missiles at exo-atmospheric altitudes of 50–80 km and the AAD missile for interception at endo-atmospheric altitudes of up to 30 km. The deployed system would consist of many launch vehicles, radars, Launch Control Centres and the Mission Control Centre. All these are geographically distributed and connected by a secure communication network.

Project Status: Under Trials

10. INSAS - Indian Small Arms System

INSAS (Indian Small Arms System) is a family of infantry arms consisting of an assault rifle and a light machine gun. It is designed by Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE), Pune. It is manufactured by the Ordnance Factories Board at Ordnance Factory Tiruchirappalli, Small Arms Factory Kanpur and Ichapore Arsenal.

Development of this rifle was a big achievement for the country as it replaced all the outdated rifles and their export was also stopped. INSAS has been included in the top 10 weapon systems developed by DRDO because of its mass induction in the services and export to various countries.

The assault rifle and LMG variants have been adopted by the Indian Armed Forces, Central Armed Police Forces, Indian Paramilitary Forces and police forces. On the international level India has exported a certain number of these rifles to Nepal, Bhutan and Oman. About, 300,000 units are in currently use by the Indian armed forces.
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