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The DRDO has recently released a tender for the casting of propellants and supply of casted dual pulse rocket motors for the ASTRA Mk2 missile. The tender specifies a requirement for 15 units to be delivered within the next 7-8 months. This development is a clear indication that the missile has reached a level of maturity, which could lead to fully integrated trials of the missile system later this year.

Last year, the Indian Air Force released a video demonstrating the weapon-release phase of the Astra Mk2 missile system, in which the missile was dropped from the ejector system. The Sukhoi-su-30MKI aircraft has been modified to serve as a testbed for the missile system’s trials, and the successful separation of the missile system from the aircraft indicates progress towards fully integrated testing of the Astra Mk2 missile system.

Astra Mk2 is an advanced beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) being developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India. It is an upgraded version of the Astra missile, which has a range of 110 km. The Astra Mk2 is expected to have a range of over 160 km and will be capable of engaging targets at longer ranges with greater accuracy.

The missile is designed to be launched from various platforms including fighter jets, helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). It will be equipped with advanced technologies such as a solid fuel rocket motor, an advanced guidance and navigation system, and an indigenously developed seeker. The Astra Mk2 is expected to enhance the air superiority of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and increase its strike capabilities.

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