New Delhi (NVI) Indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas successfully fired Python-5 Air-to-Air Missile (AAM) at Bengaluru yesterday, adding the fifth-generation missile in its air-to-air weapons capability, the Ministry of Defence said today.
Trials were also aimed to validate enhanced capability of already integrated Derby Beyond Visual Range (BVR) AAM on Tejas, MoD said, adding the test firing at Goa completed a series of missile trials to validate its performance under extremely challenging scenarios.
Derby missile achieved direct hit on a high-speed maneuvering aerial target and the Python missiles also achieved 100% hits, thereby validating their complete capability. The trials met all their planned objectives, it said.
Extensive missile carriage flight tests were conducted at Bengaluru, prior to these trials, to assess integration of the missile with aircraft systems on board the Tejas, like Avionics, Fire-control radar, Missile Weapon Delivery System and the Flight Control System.
At Goa, after successful separation trials, live launch of the missile on a Banshee target was carried out. Python-5 missile live firing was conducted to validate target engagement from all aspects as well as beyond visual ranges. In all the live firings, missile hit the aerial target, according to the Ministry.
The missiles were fired from Tejas aircraft of Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) flown by Indian Air Force (IAF) Test pilots belonging to National Flight Test Centre (NFTC). The successful conduct was made possible with years of hard work by the team of scientists, engineers and technicians from ADA and HAL-ARDC along with admirable support from CEMILAC, DG-AQA, IAF PMT, NPO (LCA Navy) and INS HANSA, as per the Ministry.
On the occasion, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has congratulated the teams of DRDO, ADA, Indian Air Force, HAL and all involved in the trial. Secretary Department of Defence R&D and Chairman DRDO Dr G Satheesh Reddy also appreciated the efforts of scientists, engineers and technicians from various organisations and industry.