A lighter sleeker variant of the Indo-Russian cruise missile dubbed as Brahmos-NG (Next Generation ) will be ready for developmental trials by 2024 said recently a top official of the Brahmos Aerospace. Indo-Russian joint venture company will develop a 1.5-ton Brahmos-NG which is nearly 1 ton lesser in terms of weight when compared to Brahmos-A missiles in service with Indian Air Force (IAF) and 1.5 ton lighter when compared to BrahMos currently in service today with the Indian Army and Indian Navy.

IAF is seen as the driving force behind the development of Brahmos-NG which now due to lighter and sleeker dimensions will be able to carry onboard almost all the fighter jets in the fleet including LCA-Tejas Mk1A fighter aircraft. While Primarily variant of the Brahmos-NG will be developed for Surface and Anti-Ship missions, has been informed that Brahmos Aerospace will also be developing Two more variants one for IAF and another one for Indian Navy.

NG version will have a Very Long Range Air to Air Missile (VLRAAM) variant to knock down AWACs and airborne tankers. Air-to-Air Variant will range of 300km will be getting an active seeker and will have a similar profile like that of Russian developed  Vympel R-37 for the Mig-31 fighter aircraft. Brahmos Aerospace might even add jettisonable rocket booster that increases the range to over 350 to 400 km.

Navy also has asked for NG version of a submarine-launched cruise missile (SLCM) which can be launched from its Torpedo tubes so that it can be integrated with its existing submarine fleet, while Six Next-generation Conventional diesel submarines under Project-75I will have dedicated Vertical Launch System (VLS) for Heavier Extended Range BrahMos SCLM, Nuclear Attack submarines currently under development will also be getting combination of SLCM variant of both NG and BrahMos ER in near future. INS Arihant and its sister class of ballistic missile submarines will be getting NG version which can be used to attack Warships if they come to close.

DRDO is also pursuing development of a long-range air-to-air missiles dubbed as Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR) jointly with Russia and  has confirmed that India’s Next Generation long-range Air-to-Air missile will have a range from 70-340 km in the power ‘ ON’ Mode. NG version will be a separate program to develop true AWACS Killers and target other force multipliers which usually operate within the safety of their airspace.

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