Recently, The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) accorded Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) to procure the Very Short Range Air Defence System or VSHORAD (IR Homing) missile system, designed and developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), among other weapon systems for the Army and Navy at a total cost of Rs4,276 crore.
GS III: Defence
Dimensions of the Article:
- What is the missile system?
- How will it help India?
- About Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)
What is the missile system?
- Meant to kill low altitude aerial threats at short ranges, VSHORADS is a man portable Air Defence System (MANPAD) designed and developed indigenously by DRDO’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI), Hyderabad, in collaboration with other DRDO laboratories and Indian Industry Partners.
- These are short-range, lightweight and portable surface-to-air missiles that can be fired by individuals or small groups to destroy aircraft or helicopters.
- They are having a maximum range of 8 kilometres and can engage targets at altitudes of 4.5 km.
- As per the defence ministry, the missile—which is propelled by a dual thrust solid motor—incorporates many novel technologies including miniaturised Reaction Control System (RCS) and integrated avionics, which were successfully proven during the tests conducted last year.
- The DRDO has designed the missile and its launcher in a way to ensure easy portability.
How will it help India?
- The missile is man-portable and lightweight, making it easy to deploy in the mountains close to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) at short notice.
- The missile will fill a critical gap in the Army’s inventory for air defence on the eastern and northern borders, particularly for mountain warfare.
- Being man-portable and quickly deployable, it will strengthen India’s air defence capabilities in rugged terrain and maritime domain.
- The procurement of Very Short-Range Air Defence systems (VSHORAD) will improve India’s ability to respond to recent developments along the northern borders.
About Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)
- The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is an agency of the Government of India, charged with the military’s research and development.
- It is headquartered in Delhi, India and has its 50+ labs all across the country.
- It was formed in 1958.
- It is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Defence, Government of India.
- With a network of 52 laboratories, which are engaged in developing defence technologies covering various fields, like aeronautics, armaments, electronics, land combat engineering, life sciences, materials, missiles, and naval systems, DRDO is India’s largest and most diverse research organisation.
Objectives of DRDO
- Design, develop and lead to production state-of-the-art sensors, weapon systems, platforms and allied equipment for our Defence Services.
- Provide technological solutions to the Services to optimise combat effectiveness and to promote well-being of the troops.
- Develop infrastructure and committed quality manpower and build strong indigenous technology base.
Issues with DRDO:
- Inadequate Budgetary Support
- It also suffers from inadequate manpower in critical areas to the lack of proper synergy with the armed forces.
- Cost escalation and long delays have damaged the reputation of DRDO.
- DRDO is big on promise and small on delivery. There is no accountability. Nobody is taken to task for time and cost overruns.
- Equipments are obsolete and is just tinkering with World War II equipment instead of working on cutting-edge technology.
-Source: Indian Express