SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG
DRDO Scientist Dr. S Guruprasad while speaking at DEFTECH2017 organized by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has listed development of Next Generation Pinaka Mark-III heavy Rocket Launcher as one of the futuristic projects initiated by DRDO.
Mark-III variant will have a range of 120kms and can carry 250kg payload which is likely to make its debut by 2020. Next Generation Pinaka will be replacing Russian Supplied SMERCH Multi-Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) which has a range of 90kms.
India earlier this year equipped Pinaka Mark-II with a navigation, guidance and control kit and has been transformed to a Guided Pinaka. Mark-II successfully has Hit targets from 70-75kms successfully and will soon enter production.
Mark-I which has a maximum range of 42kms already has been inducted into Indian Army and by 2026 Indian Army will have 22 Pinaka regiments.
Indian Army has 62 SMERCH batteries in its inventory and needs for the development of Pinaka Mark-III was felt when Russia refused to give India local license production due to fears that Transfer of Technology will enable India to fast-track its own local heavy multiple rocket launcher programs.
Chinese copies of BM-30 Smerch have already entered service with Chinese People’s Liberation Army and export variant of Chinese copies was also been supplied to Pakistan Army.
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