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Recent reports claiming the Akash missile failed to intercept a drone target during the Vayu Shakti exercise have been proven inaccurate. Evidence suggests the missile successfully engaged the target, highlighting its capabilities against challenging targets.

The exercise simulated a scenario where the Akash missile needed to intercept a drone with a low reaction time and minimal radar signature. These features present a difficult challenge for missile systems.

Here’s a breakdown of the Akash’s actions:

  • Launch: The missile was launched at the lead drone, followed by a strategic dive and maneuver to engage.
  • Radar Lock: Successful radar lock confirms target tracking.
  • Warhead Detonation: The warhead detonated, indicating proper functioning of both the RPF (Radio Proximity Fuse) and radar fuse.
  • Impact: While the drone’s small size likely minimized shrapnel damage, the close proximity of the explosion suggests significant impact.

Several online accounts falsely claimed the Akash failed to engage the drone. As evident from the scenario breakdown and available evidence, these reports are inaccurate.

The Vayu Shakti exercise demonstrated Akash’s ability to effectively engage challenging targets within its operational parameters. While limitations exist, the system continues to be a valuable asset in India’s air defense arsenal. The IAF’s ongoing evaluation of the Mk1A version further underscores its commitment to adapting and improving its defense capabilities.