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Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL), one of India’s leading defense technology companies, is set to embark on the production of the Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM) Block 6, marking a significant milestone in India’s indigenous defense manufacturing capabilities. This ‘Made in India’ endeavor will take place at BDL’s Bhanoor unit in Telangana and will not only cater to domestic needs but also open doors to lucrative export opportunities.

The ASRAAM Block 6 missile system, initially selected by India under a USD 250 million contract announced in 2014, represents a pivotal advancement in India’s air defense arsenal. It is set to equip the Indian Air Force’s upgraded SEPECAT Jaguar fighter aircraft fleet. Within the Indian Air Force, this highly capable missile system is known as the New Generation Close Combat Missile (NGCCM). Furthermore, the ASRAAM is poised to be integrated into the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas Mk1A, complementing existing Israeli Python-5 and Russian R-73M Within Visual Range Air-to-Air missiles.

The ‘final assembly, integration, and test’ (FAIT) facility, slated to be operational in 2024, is poised to be a vital cog in India’s self-reliance and defense manufacturing capabilities. Initially, the facility will focus on maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) of the existing inventory of ASRAAM missiles. However, it is anticipated that production will commence once the Indian Air Force places fresh orders for the missile, which is likely to occur in 2024.

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