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India has made a formal request to the United States of America, urging the inclusion of Lockheed Martin’s AGM-MR (Medium-Range) missiles on its fleet of MQ9B drones. The AGM-MR missile, currently in the developmental phase, offers double the range of the AGM-114 Hellfire missiles commonly equipped on MQ9B UAVs.

With increased stand-off range becoming a critical factor in operating in contested areas, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has expressed its interest in adopting the JAGM-MR missiles. This development opens up possibilities for increased capabilities not only for the Indian drone fleet but also for the IAF’s Apache helicopters.

The JAGM-MR missile, developed by Lockheed Martin, has garnered significant attention from the Indian Air Force due to its extended stand-off range. Operating in contested areas necessitates increased stand-off distances to enhance survivability and effectiveness.

The AGM-MR missile surpasses the range of the AGM-114 Hellfire missile, which currently stands at 8km, by providing a remarkable range of over 16km. This substantial increase in stand-off distance can significantly enhance the operational capabilities of the MQ9B drones, allowing them to engage targets from a safer distance.

In addition to the MQ9B drone fleet, Lockheed Martin officials have indicated that the JAGM-MR missile can also be equipped on the Apache helicopters in the IAF fleet. Lockheed Martin officials have emphasized that the JAGM-MR missile presents an attractive solution for any customer seeking greater standoff distances, improved survivability, and the need to replace outdated technologies with more advanced capabilities. As India focuses on upgrading its defence capabilities and strengthening its position in contested areas, the inclusion of the JAGM-MR missiles in its inventory would align with its strategic objectives.

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