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SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG

The Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) has confirmed in its year-end review that the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has made significant strides in air-to-air missile technology. While specific details remain under wraps, the review mentions the successful testing of a state-of-the-art air-to-air missile powered by a “Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR)” propulsion system.

This isn’t the first time DRDO has showcased its SFDR capabilities. Last year, the organization successfully flight-tested the SFDR booster, setting the stage for further advancements. This technology promises to significantly enhance the range and performance of Indian air-to-air missiles.

The SFDR is often associated with the Astra Mk3 program, aiming to develop a new long-range air-to-air missile with a range of 350 kilometres. This places it in the same league as the European Meteor missile, a formidable beyond-visual-range weapon system. The Astra Mk3 is envisioned to counter airborne threats like Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS) and aerial tankers, significantly bolstering India’s air defence capabilities.

DRDO’s ambitions don’t stop with the Astra Mk3. The organization also plans to develop a new long-range surface-to-air variant of the missile, further expanding its defensive umbrella. This demonstrates DRDO’s commitment to equipping the Indian Armed Forces with cutting-edge air defence systems capable of deterring and neutralizing a wide range of aerial threats.

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