The Indian Air Force on Thursday (Sept 9, 2021) is going to induct the MRSAM/Barak-8 missile system in Jaisalmer. This system has been jointly developed by India and Israel and will help the IAF in boosting its combat capabilities and protect from enemy aircraft.
Earlier this year the two countries had successfully carried out tests at a facility in India which validated that all the components of the weapons system were working.
Besides several Indian and Israeli companies, this system has been jointly designed and developed by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
More about MRSAM/Barak-8 missile system
A medium-range surface-to-air missile system has the capability to shoot down an enemy aircraft at a 50-70 km range.
According to IAI the MRSAM fills a medium-range gap (70 kilometers) in India.
It is an advanced system that provides ultimate protection against different aerial platforms.
It has advanced phased-array radar, interceptors with advanced RF seeker, command and control, and mobile launchers.
It has a two way data link.
In 2017, the IAI and India had inked a USD 1.6 billion contract for MRSAM for India’s ground forces. And the companies which have been involved in this project include Bharat Dynamics Limited, Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), Larsen & Toubro (L&T), and Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.
It has been made under `Make in India’ initiative.
The MRSAM is used by IAF and the Navy. The naval version is called LRSAM, and it is based on the Barak 8. A USD 777 million contract for seven ships was inked with state-owned Bharat Electronics Limited in 2018.
The Barak-1 system is already in service with the Indian and Israeli navies. This system was chosen to be enhanced into a superior air defense missile system.
It evolved into a medium range SAM for land forces and this version is called Barak-8 and this has been jointly designed and developed by ISI and DRDO, Elta Systems, Rafael, and other companies.
This system provides a 360 degree defence against various airborne threats and can engage multiple targets in all weather conditions as well as day/night.
Can be used to defend against helicopters, ballistic missiles, anti-ship missiles, fighter jets, cruise missiles and UAVs.
There are three variants of the Barak-8 system — Barak 8 AMD/LRSAM; this is a naval air defence system. It was originally designed for the Israeli Navy and is now being used in other countries including India.
The other variant is MRSAM or a medium-range and it comes with mobile launchers, tracking radar, command and control system.
Barak MX the third variant comes with a flexible configuration option. It can be used in land and naval missions.