Maiden success for navy in crucial missile-firing drill

Maiden success for navy in crucial missile-firing drill

MRSAM firing from Missile INS Kochi

Indian Navy on Friday successfully carried out a crucial weapon firing drill that will come handy in the Carrier Battle Group operations in the high seas.

A Carrier Battle Group is an armada led by an aircraft carrier followed by several destroyers, frigates, smaller ships and aircraft.

In a maritime battle scenario, it’s the aircraft carrier, as the lead ship, that will take the weapon firing decision depending on the intelligence inputs it received from the surveillance aircraft up ahead and the satellite in the sky.

Such a “cooperative engagement firing” — hallmark of a Carrier Battle Group — was successfully practised for the first time by the Indian Navy on the western sea-board with an improved version of Israeli Barak-8 surface-to-air missile with a range of 90 km.

“The firing was undertaken by INS Kochi and Chennai wherein the missiles of both ships were controlled by one ship to intercept different aerial targets at extended ranges,” an Indian Navy spokesperson said in a statement.

The firing trial was carried out by the Indian Navy, Defence Research and Development Organisation and Israel Aerospace Industries.

These medium range surface-to-air missiles are fitted on-board three Kolkata class destroyers and would also be fitted on all future major warships. They include four Visakhapatnam-class destroyer (P-15B) and seven indigenous stealth frigates (P-17A) that is to be delivered to the Navy between 2022 and 2025.

“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... thereby providing an operational edge over potential adversaries,” the spokesperson said.

The Indian Navy currently operates only one aircraft carrier, INS Vikramaditya and the second aircraft carrier is under construction.