Chandipur, February 21, Abhijit Saha: Akash missile is test fired by India today from the Integrated Test Range launch complex at Chandipur near Balasore. Akash missile is indigenously developed surface-to-air missile. The defence officials said that the missile was aimed at a floating object supported by Pilot Less Target Aircraft (PTA) ‘Lakshya’. They said that the PTA was flown from launch complex 2 at a specific altitude over the sea.
A defence official said that at 11.22 AM the missile was test fired from launch complex 3 and that some more trials would be conducted in the next couple of days.
Akash developed by the DRDO as part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme is a medium range surface-to-air anti-aircraft defence system with a a strike range of 25 km. It can carry a warhead of 60 kg and has the capability to target aircraft up to 30 km away. It is also packed with a battery that can track and attack several targets simultaneously, the defence officials said.
The defence experts compare Akash to the American MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile system which has the capability to neutralise aerial targets like fighter jets, air-to-surface missiles, cruise missiles, etc.