India’s indigenously developed Beyond Visual Range (BVR) air-to-air missile, Astra, was successfully launched from a Sukhoi-30 fighter aircraft on Wednesday.
“The missile was successfully tested to hit a simulated target at the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur, in Odisha today,” said ITR Director M V K V Prasad.
The missile was tested to prove the manoeuvring capability against a simulated target and also to validate various subsystems. All the subsystems like propulsion, navigation, guidance as also the smooth separation of the missile from the aircraft have been proved, Prasad said.
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The all-weather, state-of-the-art missile developed by Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) can engage and destroy enemy aircraft at supersonic speed. The 3.8 metre long Astra is the smallest of the DRDO-developed missiles and can be launched from different altitudes. It can reach up to 110 km when fired from an altitude of 15 km, 44 km when launched from an altitude of eight km and 21 km when fired from sea level.
The last trial of Astra was conducted from a naval range in Western sector on May 4, 2014, and it was also successful.