GS Paper - 3 (Defence Technology)

A new version of the Akash missile was successfully flight-tested from the integrated test range at Chandipur in Odisha. The missile - 'Akash Prime' - intercepted and destroyed an unmanned aerial target mimicking an enemy aircraft in its maiden flight test.

What

  1. In comparison to the existing Akash system, Akash Prime is equipped with an indigenous active RF seeker for improved accuracy.
  2. Other improvements also ensure more reliable performance under a low-temperature environment at higher altitudes.
  3. The modified ground system of the existing Akash weapon system was for the flight test.
  4. Akash Prime system will further boost the confidence of the Indian Army and Indian Air Force as the Akash system is already inducted and now getting improved with more lethal missiles.

Flashback

  1. The development of the Akash SAM was started by the DRDO in the late 1980s as part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme.
  2. Akash is primarily a Short Range Surface to Air Missile built to provide air defence cover to the vulnerable areas.
  3. The Akash weapon system can simultaneously engage multiple targets in group mode or autonomous mode.
  4. It has built-in Electronic Counter-Counter Measures (ECCM) features, which means that it has mechanisms on-board that can counter the electronic systems that deceive the detection systems.