Maiden Launch of MRSAM


Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) achieved a major milestone today with the maiden launch of Medium Range Surfaceto Air Missile (MRSAM).

  • The missile completely destroyed a high speed unmanned aerial target which was mimicking an aircraft with a direct hit. 
  • Army version of MRSAM is a surface to Air Missile developed jointly by DRDO, India and IAI, Israel for use of the Indian Army. 
  • MRSAM Army weapon system comprises of Command post, Multi-Function Radar and Mobile Launcher system
  • Number of range instruments such as Radar, Telemetry and Electro-Optical Tracking System were deployed and captured the complete mission data, validating the weapon system performance including the destruction of the target. 


Medium Range Surface to Air Missile

  • surface-to-air missile (SAM), also known as a ground-to-air missile (GTAM) or surface-to-air guided weapon (SAGW), is a missile designed to be launched from the ground to destroy aircraft or other missiles
  • It is one type of anti-aircraft system; in modern armed forces, missiles have replaced most other forms of dedicated anti-aircraft weapons, with anti-aircraft guns pushed into specialized roles.
  • The first serious attempts at SAM development took place during World War II, although no operational systems were introduced. 
  • Shipborne systems followed the evolution of land-based models, starting with long-range weapons and steadily evolving toward smaller designs to provide a layered defence. 
  • This evolution of design increasingly pushed gun-based systems into the shortest-range roles.


Mobility, maneuverability and range

  • Missiles able to fly longer distances are generally heavier, and therefore less mobile. This leads to three "natural" classes of SAM systems; heavy long-range systems that are fixed or semi-mobile, medium-range vehicle-mounted systems that can fire on the move, and short-range man-portable air-defense systems (MANPADS).
  • Modern long-range weapons include the Patriot and S-300 (missile) systems, which have effective ranges on the order of 150 km, and offer relatively good mobility and short unlimbering times. 
  • These compare with older systems with similar or less range, like the MIM-14 Nike Hercules or S-75 Dvina, which required fixed sites of considerable size. 
  • Much of this performance increase is due to improved rocket fuels and ever-smaller electronics in the guidance systems. Some very long-range systems remain, notably the Russian S-400, which has a range of 400 km.
  • Medium-range designs, like the Rapier and 2K12 Kub, are specifically designed to be highly mobile with very fast, or zero, setup times. 
  • Once a major group onto itself, medium-range designs have seen less development since the 1990s, as the focus has changed to unconventional warfare.
  • The multi-stage interceptor consists of a solid-fuel, rocket motor booster, followed by an asymmetrical kill vehicle with advanced steering for super-maneuverability during the kill-stage. A three-pulse motor provides additional acceleration and maneuverability during the terminal phase.
  • MANPAD systems first developed in the 1960s and proved themselves in battle during the 1970s. MANPADS normally have ranges on the order of 3 km and are effective against attack helicopters and aircraft making ground attacks. 
  • Against fixed wing aircraft, they can be very effective, forcing them to fly outside the missile's envelope and thereby greatly reducing their effectiveness in ground-attack roles. 

MANPAD systems are sometimes used with vehicle mounts to improve maneuverability, like the Avenger system. These systems have encroached on the performance niche formerly filled by dedicated mid-range systems. 

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