The Indian Navy has successfully conducted the first cooperative engagement firing of the medium-range surface-to-air missile (MRSAM).
The test-firing exercise was performed on the Western Seaboard by the navy’s Kolkata-class destroyers Kochi and Chennai.
It represents a major milestone in the Indian Navy’s efforts to enhance its anti-air warfare capability.
During the firing, one of these two vessels controlled the missiles of both ships to intercept different aerial targets at extended ranges.
The navy was assisted by other stakeholders, including DRDO and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), in the successful firing trial.
The missile was developed under a partnership between DRDL Hyderabad, a DRDO Lab, and IAI.
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State-owned ammunitions and missile systems manufacturer Bharat Dynamics was responsible for manufacturing the MRSAM.
Currently, these surface to air missiles are fitted on the navy’s Kolkata-class destroyers. The Indian Navy plans to integrate the missiles into all future major warships.
In a statement, the Indian Ministry of Defence said: “With the successful proving of this cooperative mode of engagement, the Indian Navy has become a part of a select group of navies that have this niche capability.
“This capability significantly enhances the combat effectiveness of the Indian Navy thereby providing an operational edge over potential adversaries.”
The missiles will allow the service to defend its warships against air, marine and ground threats. They are equipped with the Israeli-built Elta MF-STAR radar, as well as command and control, launchers, and interceptors with advanced homing seekers.
In January, IAI reached agreements with the Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard to provide naval MRSAM systems.