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IAF-DRDO flight-tested Helicopter-launched Stand-off Anti-Tank Missile from Pokhran Range, Rajasthan

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India flight-tests helicopter-launched stand-off anti-tank missileOn December 11, 2021, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Indian Air Force (IAF) successfully flight-tested the indigenously designed and developed Helicopter launched (air-launched) Stand-off Anti-tank (SANT) Missile from the Pokhran range in Rajasthan.

  • It should be noted that it is for the first time that this was launched from a Russian origin Mi-35 helicopter gunship.
  • The IAF’s Russian-origin Mi-35 attack helicopters are expected to be equipped with the missile to arm them with the capability to destroy enemy tanks from an improved stand-off range.
  • The test met all its mission objectives viz. release mechanism, advanced guidance, tracking algorithms etc.

Developers of SANT:
It has been designed and developed by Research Centre Imarat (RCI), Hyderabad (Telangana) in coordination with other DRDO labs and participation from industries.
Key Points:
i.This is the third in the series of indigenous stand-off weapons following long range bomb and smart anti airfield weapon (SAAW) for IAF. It is a fourth generation upgraded variant of HELINA missile developed for long distance airborne anti-armour role.

  • In November 2018, DRDO successfully tested SANT at Pokhran range.
  • In 2020, DRDO again conducted a successful test of the SANT Missile off the Coast of Odisha.

ii.This anti-tank missile is equipped with a state-of-the-art MMW (Millimetre Wave) seeker which provides high precision strike capability from a safe distance.

iii.The weapon can neutralize targets in a range up to 10 kms.

iv.It also has the capability of Lock-on after launch and Lock-on before launch.

Note –

  • The existing Russian-origin Shturm missile on the Mi-35 can target tanks at a range of five km. The other weapons on the gunship include rockets of different calibre, 500 kg bombs, 12.7mm guns, and a 23mm cannon.

Recent Related News:

On September 27, 2021, DRDO successfully flight tested the new version of Akash Missile namely ‘Akash Prime’ from Integrated Test Range (ITR), Chandipur, Odisha.  It is a medium-range mobile surface-to-air missile (SAM) system developed by the DRDO and produced by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).

About Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)

Parent Ministry– Ministry of Defence (MoD)
Chairman– Dr G. Satheesh Reddy
Headquarter– New Delhi, Delhi