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The Indian Air Force (IAF) is gearing up for the next stage in its development of the RudraM series of air-to-surface missiles. According to sources close to, HAL Nashik Division has completed modifications on Su-30 MKI aircraft (SB-214) to enable captive flight trials of the RudraM-III, a long-range variant boasting impressive capabilities.

The RudraM-III, weighing 1.6 tons, packs a punch with its 300-400kg warhead and a staggering 600km range when launched from an 11km altitude at Mach 0.9. This significant reach surpasses its predecessors, the RudraM and RudraM-II, and expands the IAF’s strike capabilities.

Modifications to Su-30MKI aircraft SB-214 involved stations No. 5 and 6, specifically designed to integrate and test the RudraM-III. These captive flight trials will offer crucial data on the missile’s performance and pave the way for future weaponization.

Beyond its impressive range, the RudraM-III can engage a variety of targets, including radar installations, bunkers, airstrips, and air hangers. This versatility makes it a valuable asset in diverse combat scenarios.

While the Su-30MKI will initially be the sole platform cleared to carry the RudraM-III, plans envision equipping the Tejas Mk2 with both RudraM-II and RudraM-III variants, excluding the Tejas Mk1A.

The RudraM series builds upon India’s indigenous missile development program. The RudraM and RudraM-II have already demonstrated their capabilities, and the RudraM-III promises to further enhance the IAF’s air-to-surface strike power with its extended range and versatility.

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