SOURCE: VISHAL KARPE / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
Israel recently declared that intends to build up its Barak missile family and plans to develop two new missiles using a modular and scalable approach which will be tailored and sized to meet specific air defense needs. Israel plans to offer three missiles based on the Barak 8 to all its customers.
Barak MRAD will use a single-pulse engine giving a range of up to 35km, Dual-pulse Barak LRAD which in India is known as MR-SAM/LR-SAM will have a range of 70km and Barak ER with help of additional booster motor and increased length will have engagement range of 150km.
Barak missile family will use central command and control battle management center which will be a common link between each missile and it allows an air defense network to be built up in blocks, expanding as needs arise and budgets allow. Israel also says Barak missile family can take inputs from radar and effectors from other sources thus improving its engagements and detection capabilities without large scale up the system.
Expansion of the Barak missile family in Israel might not have any interest in India due to various reasons and also due to India’s plans to be missile import free by 2022 and focus rather now has shifted to indigenous development of the air-defense system.
India is largely focusing on expanding its Akash Missile Family and already has developed Akash-1S with a new indigenous seeker and also working on a Dual-pulse based Akash-2 which will have a 50km engagement range which will go for trials from 2019 onwards. DRDO also has started working on new XR-SAM Air-defence program where Ramjet propulsion based will be used to have a long engagement of 150-250 km.
Development of DRDO’s QR-SAM with the engagement of a 35km range for mobility to move with strike corps of the Indian Army only further fortify indigenous air defense system in India and plans are also in works to further develop a very short range surface to air missile in near future.
India is already procuring S-400 Triumf from Russia which will come with only two types of missiles out of the family of four. very-long-range 40N6 (400 km), the long-range 48N6 (250 km) missile variant. S-400 Triumf from Russia will be a short-term interim measure while India develops S-400 type indigenous alternative based on India’s Ballistic Missile Defence Programme is developed in near future.
MR-SAM Joint program might be last of the Air-Defence system which India has developed with a foreign country and learning from its experience and due to its expensive price tag, India will keep pushing development of an Indigenous air-defense system to meet its requirements.