India has successfully conducted the first live firing of a Boeing-built anti-ship Harpoon missile from a fighter plane.
The missile was reportedly launched from a Jaguar maritime strike fighter that flew 200nm off the west coast, targeting a pre-designated aim in the Arabian Sea.
The country had purchased Harpoon missiles for the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) Jaguar aircraft and the Indian Navy’s P-8I maritime patrol aircraft.
The fighter plane belonged to the IAF’s maritime strike squadron based at the Lohegaon airbase. During the mission, Jaguar was also carried out mid-air refuelling.
The Boeing-built, all-weather, over-the-horizon, anti-ship Harpoon Block II missiles are capable of executing both land-strike and anti-ship missions against a range of targets.
Designed to offer precise long-range guidance for land and ship targets, the missile also protects coastal defence sites, surface-to-air missile sites, exposed aircraft, port / industrial facilities, and ships within the port.
Currently, India is planning to equip its Shishumar-class submarines with the Harpoon missiles.
In addition, the Indian Navy is set to test fire a long-range surface-to-air missile as part of efforts to improve its capabilities against incoming missiles, planes and drones.
This test, if successful, will result in the final installation of Barak 8 missile on board Indian warships.