India’s main missile laboratory said on Sunday it had developed a missile defence shield, which could be assembled at short notice.
The Press Trust of India quoted Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) chief V. K. Saraswat as saying the shield could protect at least two cities whereby incoming ballistic missile with the range of up to 2,000kms could be destroyed.
The system is to be upgraded to the range of 5,000 kms by 2016. “The Ballistic Missile Defence shield is now mature. We are ready to put phase one in place and it can be put in very short time,” Mr Saraswat told the PTI.
He said the shield, as part of phase one of the programme, can be put in place at two places in the country, where the infrastructure is available.
However, the two places have not yet been identified and the selection will be made at the political level.
The DRDO used variants of Prithvi missiles as simulated targets and successfully intercepted them in test-firings.
“We have carried out six successful launches and demonstrated the capability for 2,000km targets…We have demonstrated it in two layers that is endo-atmospheric (inside the Earth’s atmosphere) and exo-atmospheric (outside the Earth’s atmosphere),” Mr Saraswat said.
He said all the elements such as long-range radars and tracking devices, real-time datalink and mission control system required for the missile system had been “realised” successfully.
The DRDO chief told the PTI the Indian missile defence system was comparable with the US Patriot 3 system, which was successfully used during the 1990 Gulf War against Iraq.
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