India has successfully carried out induction trials of its indigenously-built surface-to-air tactical Akash air Defence missile.
The test was mandatory before this lot of Akash missiles are inducted into the Indian armed forces, officials closely associated with the trials said.
The user conducted test was carried out from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur off Odisha coast using a mobile launcher from launch complex-III at 11 a.m.
The tests and the induction of the Akash missiles will boost India's air Defence shield and re-validate its operational efficacy.
The trials were witnessed by Indian Air Force (IAF) officers, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) scientists, and Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) officials.
"The user-specific trial, which formed part of the country’s routine air Defence exercises, was successful," an official said.
To re-validate the technology and operational efficacy of the missile, Defence forces conducted the trial with logistic support provided by the ITR, the official added.
"During the trial, the missile was aimed at intercepting a floating object supported by a pilotless target aircraft, flown from launch complex-II, at a definite altitude over the sea," he said.
Akash, an anti-aircraft Defence system having a strike range of 25 km and capable of carrying 60-kg warhead, was first inducted into the armed forces in 2008.
It can simultaneously engage several targets with 'Rajendra' radar developed by the Electronics and Radar Development Establishment (LRDE), a Bangalore-based DRDO laboratory.
Rajendra, a passive phased array radar, does the surveillance, tracks the target, acquires it and guides the missile to the target. It is a multi-function radar capable of tracking as many as 64 targets and controlling up to 12 missiles simultaneously.
India developed Akash in the 1990s as part of the nation's Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) pioneered in the mid-1980s.
Akash missile system has been compared with the US' MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile system, capable of neutralising aerial targets such as unmanned aerial vehicles, combat planes, cruise missiles and air-to-surface missiles.
Early March this year, the first batch of Akash missiles manufactured by BDL were handed over to the IAF at Hyderabad.