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India test-fires Akash SAM missile

Last updated on: February 21, 2014 13:57 IST

India on Friday test-fired the indigenously developed surface-to-air Akash missile from the IntegratedTestRange launch complex at Chandipur near Balasore in Odisha

The missile targeted a floating object supported by the pilot-less target aircraft 'Lakshya', defence officials said.

"Akash was test fired from launch complex-3 at 11.22 am," a defence official said, adding that "some more trials would be conducted within the next couple of days".

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"During the trial, the missile was aimed at intercepting a floating object supported by a pilot-less target aircraft, flown from launch complex-II, at a definite altitude over the sea," according to a source.

Akash is a medium range surface-to-air anti-aircraft defence system developed by the DRDO as part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme.

It has a strike range of 25 km and can carry a warhead of 60 kg. It has the capability to target aircraft up to 30 km away and is packed with a battery that can track and attack several targets simultaneously, they said.

With the capability to neutralise aerial targets like fighter jets, cruise missiles, air-to-surface missiles etc, defence experts compare Akash to the American MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile system.

The last trial was conducted on June 6, 2012 from the same base.