Dr. Sudhir Kumar Mishra, CEO&MD of BrahMos Aerospace, confirmed to local India media outlet that development of Air to Surface variant of the BrahMos-A is currently under development and by end of this year the new variant is likely to be tested out from the Sukhoi-30MKI launch platform.

Indian Air Force (IAF) already successfully test-fired the BrahMos-A (Air) supersonic cruise missile from a Sukhoi Su-30MKI multirole fighter against a sea-based target last year and now efforts are on to develop an Air to Surface which can be used to take out targets based on land.

Mishra said new variant requires a new software upgrade and countless computer simulations from different altitudes followed up with in-flight trials before the new variant is ready for the developmental demonstration purpose which he is hopeful will happen by end of this year.

BrahMos-A previously tested out is an Anti-ship missile (AShM) variant tuned to hunt targets in the middle of the ocean when launched from Sukhoi-30MKI. IAF is interested in procuring both Air-launched anti-ship missile and Air-launched Air-to-surface missile (ASM) variants of BrahMos-A to find and hunt down targets both in sea and land.

BrahMos-A is a two-stage, air-launched cruise missile (ALCM) which weighs 2.5 tonnes and comes minus its booster to be carried underbelly of a Sukhoi Su-30MKI multirole fighter. BrahMos-A is first gravity dropped from Su-30MKI while performing the drop in mid-air missile’s engines are fired up and Mach 3 Supersonic cruise missiles achieve its desired speed in no time and rush to its target.

IAF will be using 40 modified Su-30MKI fighter jets as a launch platform for BrahMos-A Air-launched cruise missile (ALCM). With long-range 800km variant under development, BrahMos-A will be one of the most lethal AShM and ASM Air-launched cruise missile ever to be developed.



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