Military to buy DRDO missiles worth Rs 1 lakh cr over next 10 yrs

Discussion in 'Strategic Forces' started by The Fox, Sep 4, 2012.

  1. The Fox

    The Fox Regular Member

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    (Part 1 of a series in Business Standard on India's missile progme)

    by Ajai Shukla
    Missile Complex, Hyderabad
    Business Standard, 4th Sept 12


    At the tightly guarded “Missile Complex” outside Hyderabad, three Defence R&D Organisation (DRDO) laboratories will, for the first time, provide the military with a range of indigenous tactical missiles. With India’s air defence network in tatters and its warships desperately needing protection from incoming anti-ship missiles, the defence ministry blocked foreign purchases to give the DRDO time to develop indigenous missiles. Now, over the coming decade, the military is poised to buy about Rs 1,00,000 crore worth of DRDO-developed missiles. Top DRDO scientists say indigenous missiles would cost barely half as much as a foreign alternative.

    The director of the pivotal Defence R&D Laboratory (DRDL), AK Chakrabarti, confirmed to Business Standard during an exclusive visit to the Missile Complex that the Indian Air Force (IAF) and army had already placed orders worth Rs 24,000 crore for Akash surface-to-air missiles. He said the navy had ordered Long Range-Surface to Air Missiles (LR-SAMs) worth more than Rs 2,600 crore for the navy’s destroyers and frigates that were under construction. And Subir Kumar Chaudhary, the director of DRDL’s sister laboratory, Research Centre Imarat (RCI), revealed that the air force had ordered Rs 8,600 crore worth of Medium Range-Surface to Air Missiles (MR-SAMs).

    Dr VG Sekharan, director of the Advance Systems Laboratory (ASL), which developed the Prithvi and Agni ballistic missiles, declined to quantify the values or numbers of ballistic missiles ordered by the Strategic Forces Command, which operates India’s nuclear deterrent. Informed MoD sources estimate that more than Rs 10,000 crore worth of missile systems have been delivered, or are on order for, the five missile groups already in service: two holding Prithvi missiles; a third holding Agni-I missiles; a fourth holding Agni-II missiles; and a fifth now being raised with Agni-III missiles.

    In addition, a DRDO joint venture with Russia is producing and delivering Brahmos supersonic cruise missiles for the army and navy. Besides this, DRDL scientists claim they are close to success on the Nag anti-tank guided missile (ATGM); and some way from success on the air-to-air missile, Astra. The Nag and Astra could yield large orders when they meet user requirements in testing.

    The DRDO has a monopoly on strategic ballistic missiles like the Prithvi and Agni series, since the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) prohibits signatories from exporting missiles with ranges above 300 kilometres. Now there is relief within the DRDO that the military is ordering even tactical missile systems like the Akash, which face international competition.

    “The strategic missile programme has no competitors. But the tactical missile programmes are always under threat from foreign alternatives. If you don’t deliver (the missile systems) in time, or with the required quality, the users will buy from abroad,” says Chaudhary, the RCI director.

    Leading the charge of successful tactical missiles is the Akash, which the army and air force steadfastly rejected for two decades, leaving army strike corps and IAF bases woefully unprotected as their vintage Russian missile systems became obsolescent, and then obsolete. But the MoD repeatedly turned down army and IAF demands to import foreign missile systems, backing the indigenous Akash. In 2008-09 the air force reluctantly ordered two squadrons of Akash for protecting the key air bases of Pune and Gwalior. Being assembled by Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) in Bangalore, the first of these will enter service this month, followed by the second in June 2013.

    After that initial order, the IAF lost no time in embracing the Akash. In 2010, it ordered another six squadrons of the Akash, for protecting its bases in the north-east, on the Sino-Indian border. In March 2011 the army placed a whopping order for two Akash regiments. Bharat Dynamics Ltd (BDL) will build the army version, mounted on the infamous Kolos Tatra. Trials of the first Tatra-mounted Akash system are scheduled for June 2013.

    The DRDO says it conducts regular test firing, along with the military. “The IAF was pleased with its Akash firing tests, most recently in May-June 2012, when it fired five missiles at difficult incoming targets, which were flying just 30 metres high at almost the speed of sound. Four out of those five missiles destroyed their targets,” says Chakrabarti.

    The Akash system’s Rohini radar picks up enemy fighters out to 120 kilometres, shooting them down at ranges of 25-30 kilometres, and altitudes of up to 18,000 metres (60,000 feet). Ongoing R&D has also given the Akash “low-altitude interception” capability, enabling it to shoot down aircraft that are just three kilometres away.


    http://ajaishukla.blogspot.in/2012/09/military-to-buy-drdo-missiles-worth-rs.html
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2012
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  3. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Indian Military to buy DRDO missiles worth Rs 1 lakh crores in 10 years

    This is the first instalment of a three-part series


    ===


    Indigenous missiles would cost half as much as a foreign alternative, say scientists



    At the tightly guarded “Missile Complex” outside Hyderabad, three Defence Research & Develo-pment Organisation (DRDO) laboratories will, for the first time, provide the military with a range of indigenous tactical missiles. With India’s air defence network in tatters and its warships desperately needing protection from incoming anti-ship missiles, the defence ministry blocked foreign purchases to give the DRDO time to develop indigenous missiles.

    Now, over the coming decade, the military is poised to buy about Rs 1 lakh crore worth of DRDO-developed missiles. Top DRDO scientists say indigenous missiles would cost barely half as much as a foreign alternative.


    The Director of the pivotal Defence R&D Laboratory (DRDL), A K Chakrabarti, confirmed to Business Standard during an exclusive visit to the Missile Complex that the Indian Air Force (IAF) and Army had already placed orders worth Rs 24,000 crore for Akash surface-to-air missiles. He said the navy had ordered Long Range-Surface to Air Missiles (LR-SAMs) worth more than Rs 2,600 crore for the navy’s destroyers and frigates that were under construction. And Subir Kumar Chaudhary, the director of DRDL’s sister laboratory, Research Centre Imarat (RCI), revealed the air force had ordered Rs 8,600 crore worth of Medium Range-Surface to Air Missiles (MR-SAMs).
    V G Sekharan, director of the Advance Systems Laboratory (ASL), which developed the Prithvi and Agni ballistic missiles, declined to quantify the values or numbers of ballistic missiles ordered by the Strategic Forces Command, which operates India’s nuclear deterrent. Informed Ministry of Defence (MoD) sources estimate more than Rs 10,000 crore worth of missile systems have been delivered, or are on order for, the five missile groups already in service: two holding Prithvi missiles; a third holding Agni-I missiles; a fourth holding Agni-II missiles; and a fifth now being raised with Agni-III missiles.

    In addition, a DRDO joint venture with Russia is producing and delivering Brahmos supersonic cruise missiles for the Army and Navy. Besides this, DRDL scientists claim they are close to success on the Nag anti-tank guided missile (ATGM); and some way from success on the air-to-air missile, Astra. The Nag and Astra could yield large orders when they meet user requirements in testing.

    The DRDO has a monopoly on strategic ballistic missiles like the Prithvi and Agni series, since the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) prohibits signatories from exporting missiles with ranges above 300 kilometres. Now, there is relief within the DRDO that military is ordering even tactical missile systems like the Akash, which faces international competition.

    “The strategic missile programme has no competitors. But the tactical missile programmes are always under threat from foreign alternatives. If you don’t deliver (the missile systems) in time, or with the required quality, the users will buy from abroad,” says Chaudhary, the RCI director.

    Leading the charge of successful tactical missiles is the Akash, which the Army and Air Force steadfastly rejected for two decades, leaving Army strike corps and IAF bases woefully unprotected as their vintage Russian missile systems became obsolescent, and then obsolete. But the MoD repeatedly turned down army and IAF demands to import foreign missile systems, backing the indigenous Akash. In 2008-09 the Air Force reluctantly ordered two squadrons of Akash for protecting the key air bases of Pune and Gwalior. Being assembled by Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) in Bangalore, the first of these will enter service this month, followed by the second in June 2013.

    After that initial order, the IAF lost no time in embracing the Akash. In 2010, it ordered another six squadrons of the Akash, for protecting its bases in the north-east, on the Sino-Indian border. In March 2011, the Army placed a whopping order for two Akash regiments. Bharat Dynamics Ltd will build the Army version, mounted on the infamous Kolos Tatra. Trials of the first Tatra-mounted Akash system are scheduled for June 2013.

    The DRDO says it conducts regular test firing, along with the military. “The IAF was pleased with its Akash firing tests, most recently in May-June 2012, when it fired five missiles at difficult incoming targets, which were flying just 30 metres high at almost the speed of sound. Four out of those five missiles destroyed their targets,” says Chakrabarti.

    The Akash system’s Rohini radar picks up enemy fighters out to 120 kilometres, shooting them down at ranges of 25-30 kilometres, and altitudes of up to 18,000 metres (60,000 feet). Ongoing R&D has also given Akash “a low-altitude interception” capability, enabling it to shoot down aircraft that are just three kilometres away.

    Military to buy DRDO missiles worth Rs 1 lakh cr in 10 yrs
     
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  4. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    wil the DRDO have real working missiles 10 years from now ?:taunt1:
     
  5. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    DRDO takes up Defence Ministry's role for next-gen missiles

    DRDO will look at facilities required at the Indian Air Force bases where missiles will be deployed
    Ajai Shukla / Missile Complex/ Hyderabad Sep 05, 2012, 00:16 IST

    When the Akash surface-to-air missile (SAM) enters service withthe Indian Air Force (IAF) this month, it will have taken 30 years to have been developed and built. Shaken by this delay, the Navy and the IAF have sponsored a new development model for their next-generation missiles, which will see the Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) moving away from indigenous technology development, and operating instead as a project manager. Effectively, the DRDO has been handed the coordination role traditionally played by the defence ministry (MoD).

    Senior DRDO managers who briefed Business Standard during an exclusive visit to its missile laboratories in Hyderabad said it had been handed control of the budget for the IAF’s futuristic Medium Range Surface to Air Missile (MR-SAM); and the Navy’s advanced Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LR-SAM). This amounts to Rs 10,075 crore for the MR-SAM, and Rs 2,606 crore for the LR-SAM.

    From this budget, DRDO has signed technology development contracts with Israeli companies, especially Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), for many of the new systems that will power these SAMs.

    DRDO, too, will develop certain sub-systems, but its key responsibilities are: technology coordination, involving manufacturing partners from Indian industry so that manufacture can begin without delay, putting in place key infrastructure, and working out the users’ requirements of spares and logistics systems so that manufacturing orders can be placed holistically.

    The DRDO has often complained that excellent systems built by it have been devalued by poor production, notably the Arjun tank, built by the Ordinance Factory Board at Avadi, Chennai.

    “For the first time in a major programme, DRDO will be involved in production of newly-developed systems. We will factor in the production phase from the beginning, looking at the facilities required at the IAF bases where the missiles will be deployed, the maintenance requirement, the spares management, etc. We will calculate the entire life-time requirement right from the beginning, so that we can take consolidated figures to the sub-contractors, who can then gear up for the production,” says Subir Kumar Chaudhary, who is managing the MR-SAM programme.

    This model was proposed by the military, especially the Navy, which wants the LR-SAM for its four new Kolkata-class destroyers, seven proposed Project 17A frigates, and the Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC), which is being built in Cochin Shipyard. Many current warships are protected by the Israeli Barak missile, which has a range of just 10-15 kilometres and can shoot down only the current generation of anti-ship missiles, like the Harpoon and the Exocet. The LR-SAM has a range of 70 kilometres, according to scientists from the Defence R&D Laboratory (DRDL), who are developing the missile, and will be manoeuvrable enough to shoot down the next generation of anti-ship missiles.

    Senior Naval officers told Business Standard anonymously, rather than risk lengthy developmental delays by going it alone, as DRDO did in the Akash project, it was prudent to back a joint developmental project with Israel, cutting down developmental risk. Such a joint model was not possible when the Akash was being developed, because of tight international sanctions.

    Like the Navy with the LR-SAM project, the IAF backed the MR-SAM project with funding. “The IAF has funded 90 per cent of the project, while 10 per cent is funded by the DRDO for the development phase of the MR-SAM,” says Chaudhary.

    Ironically, joint development with Israeli companies has not eliminated delay. The LR-SAM, which began development in January 2006, was to be delivered to the Navy in October 2012. But the first LR-SAMs will not be delivered before early 2014.

    Meanwhile, three Kolkata-class warships which were to be fitted with these are held up, incomplete in Mazagon Dock Ltd, Mumbai (MDL). The shipyard is hoping for launchers (without missiles) to be delivered soon, so that construction can continue. The missiles could be delivered subsequently, even after the Kolkata-class destroyers enter service with the Navy.

    The IAF is funding a far more expansive contract for the MR-SAM. Signed in March 2009, the contract is for 18 fire units (each equipped with 24 missiles) that must be delivered by October 2016. Each fire unit comes with a radar, three missile launchers, and a sophisticated Combat Management System. Since a missile has a limited shelf life, additional orders for missiles will continue to be placed as they are consumed.

    The MR-SAM uses the same missile as the LR-SAM, with a range of 70 kilometres, to protect its air bases. The ground infrastructure, however, is far more complex. The Akash missile, which is currently entering service to protect IAF bases, has a range of 25-30 kilometres.

    This is the second instalment of a three-part series
     
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