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SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG.

India’s upcoming Air Launched Cruise missile (ALCM) Hunter is jointly developed by the Indian State-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) with Bengaluru-based startup NewSpace Research and Technologies will be optimized for high altitude and will be capable of twisting, turning, and skimming the landscape much better than other conventional cruise missiles.

Hunter ALCM which is under development has a range of 200km that can carry out deep penetration strikes and will be the first ALCM that is capable of being recovered in case it is unable to find its target by a parachute that can be later refueled and relaunched from the jet again.

Hunter ALCM is currently going through design optimization and will be ready to carry out developmental cum user trials sometime in 2024 onwards as many of the systems are currently under the testing phase.

HAL is also designing ALFA Pod that can carry 4-6 ALFA loitering munition that can be launched from the launch aircraft and fly unpowered for a few kilometers before releasing ALFA loitering munition closer to its target. ALFA Pod has been further optimized for stealth and glide operation than its mock concept that was showcased earlier.

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) had revealed mock-ups of the Combat Air Teaming System (CATS) family of Warrior loyal wingmen, Hunter ALCM, ALFA Pod, Air Launched Flexible Asset (ALFA), and a manned mother ship Tejas Mk1 Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) at the Aero India 2021 exhibition in Bangalore.

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