Source : IgMp Bureau
India to test Rudram-III Hypersonic Air to Surface missile soon !!
India’s eminent defense research institution, the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), is actively engaged in the development of a distinguished family of anti-radiation missiles (ARM), aptly named “Rudram,” signifying the “remover of sorrows.” These precision munitions are meticulously designed for the purpose of detecting, tracking, and neutralizing adversary radio frequency sources integrated within their defense systems, encompassing radar systems, communication assets, and various other radio frequency emitters.
Leading the charge within this arsenal is Rudram-I, also known as NGARM (Next-Generation Anti-Radiation Missile). This inaugural missile in the Rudram series has successfully completed its development phase. Noteworthy attributes of this missile include its capacity to be launched from altitudes ranging from 500 meters to 15 kilometers, encompassing an impressive operational range extending up to 200 kilometers.
With a weight of approximately 600 kilograms, housing a formidable 60-kilogram warhead, Rudram-I is primarily integrated with the Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter aircraft, and plans are underway for its incorporation into other fighter jets within the Indian Air Force’s fleet.
In November 2022, it was reported that the Indian Air Force submitted a proposal valued at over Rs 1,400 crore to the government for the acquisition of the Rudram NGARM, underscoring its strategic significance.
The second installment in DRDO’s ARM family, Rudram-2, represents a hypersonic aero-ballistic air-to-ground missile currently under development. Propelled by a solid rocket motor, this missile boasts an operational range spanning 50 to 300 kilometers and achieves an impressive peak speed of 5.5 Mach, firmly positioning it within the hypersonic realm.
Rudram-2 will offer two distinct variants tailored for specific roles: an Anti-Radiation Missile (ARM) and a Ground Attack configuration. The maiden flight test of Rudram-II was successfully conducted in 2021, with testing performed aboard an SU-30 MKI aircraft.
Rudram-3, the third and most formidable missile within the Rudram family, exhibits a two-stage configuration akin to the Russian Kinzhal missile. Comprising a booster stage and a dual-pulsed motor second stage, this missile is expected to weigh approximately 600-700 kilograms, with a warhead payload of 200 kilograms and an impressive operational range of 550 kilometers. Featuring 16 control surfaces, including eight in the mid-section and eight in the tail-end, Rudram-3 promises exceptional maneuverability. A fixed wing in the mid-section propels the missile to achieve hypersonic velocities. It utilizes INS GPS satellite guidance in conjunction with Inertial Navigation for mid-course guidance, offering an impressive Circular Error Probable (CEP) of approximately 4 meters. Employing a quasi-ballistic trajectory, Rudram-3 is designed to strike targets with hypersonic velocity.
Significantly, the HAL Nasik division is embarking on the modification of an SU-30 MKI fighter jet for flight instrument testing of the Rudram-3 missile. This particular aircraft has previously undergone trials for Astra and NGARM (Rudram-I) missiles. The aircraft’s Station numbers 5 and 6 will be adapted for Rudram-3 trials, further integrated with the KAM 500 data acquisition system to collect vital test data. This progression underscores the advanced stage of Rudram-3’s development, with trials anticipated in the ensuing months.
Rudram-3 missiles, with their heightened speed and warhead payload, surpass the capabilities of air-launched BrahMos missiles. These formidable munitions are poised to effectively neutralize Pakistan and Chinese Surface-to-Air Missile defense systems along border regions, while significantly bolstering the deep penetration strike capabilities of the Indian Air Force.
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