Trishul missile Current Affairs - 2019

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AKASH-1S Missile: test fired by DRDO

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully test fired Akash-1S surface to air defence missile system from Integrated Test Range (ITR) in Balasore off the Odisha coast. This is the second successive successful missile test by DRDO in last two days.

About Akash-1S

Background:

  • The Akash missile is a medium range multi-target engagement capable missile that was developed as part of Integrated Guided-Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). Other missiles under IGDMP are Nag, Agni, Trishul, and Prithvi missiles. The missile system was formally inducted into the Army on May 2015 and in the IAF on July 2015. Later in September 2015 the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) cleared seven additional squadrons of the Akash missile for IAF.
  • After a 2017 Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report stated that 30% of these missiles failed when tested and in 2017 itself the Army too agreed that missiles did not meet its operational requirements because of their higher reaction time.

Features

  • It is a supersonic surface to air missile with multi-target engagement capability.
  • Akash-1S is an upgrade version of existing Akash missile fitted with an indigenously developed seeker.
  • The new Akash weapon system has combination of both command guidance and active terminal seeker guidance.
  • Range: The missile has a range of about 25 km and altitude range of 18,000 metres (18km).
  • It is capable of neutralizing advanced aerial targets and in striking down enemy fighter jets and drones effectively.
  • Missile system uses: high-energy solid propellant for booster and ramjet-rocket propulsion for sustainer phase thus is said to be highly mobile.
  • Variants: include Akash MK1, Akash-MK2. They have improved accuracy and higher ranges are under development by the DRDO.

Way Forward

  • India taking certain steps to slowly fill the holes in its air defence elements such as by developing advanced surface-to-air missile called ‘Medium Range Surface to Air Missile’ (MRSAM) in collaboration with Israel.
  • Besides MRSAM, India is also procuring five regiments of renowned S-400 air defence system from Russia whose delivery will begin in 2020.

National Technology Day observed on May 11

National Technology Day was observed on May 11 across India. The day marks the anniversary of Pokhran Nuclear Tests (Operation Shakti) of 1998 and also India’s progress in field of science and technology.

About National Technology Day

  • The National Technology Day was coined by late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee as 11 May act as as a reminder of India’s technological advancements.
  • Background: On 11 May 1998, India successfully conducted Pokhran-II (code name-Operation Shakti) in which it tested its Shakti-I nuclear missile at Indian Army’s Pokhran Test Range in Rajasthan. This was the second nuclear test conducted by India after Pokhran I (code-named Operation Smiling Buddha) was conducted in May 1974.
  • Objective: National Technology Day highlights and celebrates groundbreaking achievements and valuable contribution of our scientists and engineers in field of science and technology. It also encourages youngsters towards science and technology field and embracing it as a career option.
  • Celebration: Every year the Technology Development Board of India (a statutory body) commemorates NTD by awarding individuals with National Award for their contribution to science and technology (S&T). Also, on the occasion of NTD engineering colleges across India conduct programmes to support scientific endeavours and promote interest amongst students.

Other Landmark Events that happened on May 11

  • National Technology Day also marks the flight of Hansa-3, India’s first indigenous aircraft which was developed by National Aerospace Laboratories. It was flown in Bengaluru when nuclear tests were being organized in Pokhran, Rajasthan. It was a two-seater, light general aviation plane. It is utilized in flying institutes for pilot training, surveillance, sports, aerial photography, and environment Projects.
  • On May 11, 1998 the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) accomplished last test-fire of Trishul missile. It is a surface-to-air, short-range missile, quick-reaction. It was then introduced into defence service by Indian Air Force (IAF) and Indian Army.
  • The Trishul missile Trishul was a unit of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) of India which has resulted in formation of Prithvi, Akash and Agni missile systems.