India Readies "Phase One" of Antimissile Protection, Research Leader Says

India has readied the first phase of an antimissile system that could quickly be set up to shield a minimum of two cities from attack, the Press Trust of India reported on Monday (see GSN, May 4).

"The Ballistic Missile Defense shield is now mature. We are ready to put phase one in place and it can be out in very short time," Defense Research and Development Organization head V.K. Saraswat informed the news agency. The technology encompasses long-distance sensors and monitors, electronic communications, and command and control systems.

The technology can be deployed on short notice to urban areas that have the necessary support structures, according to Saraswat. As yet, the two cities where the system would be deployed have not been chosen; that determination is to be provided by political leaders.

Employing modified Prithvi missiles as dummy targets, the system has had six successful tests dating to November 2006.

"We have carried out six successful launches and demonstrated the capability for 2,000 kilometer [approximately 1,240 miles] targets," according to Saraswat. "We have demonstrated it in two layers that is endoatmospheric and exoatmospheric."

He said the technology is similar to U.S. Patriot Advanced Capability 3 interceptors. 

The next phase of India's missile defense effort, which aims to defeat high-altitude missiles that can travel as far as 3,100 miles, is anticipated to be finished no later than 2016. In accordance with the second phase, warships are being constructed that would field dummy missiles used in testing, Saraswat said (Press Trust of India/NDTV, May 6).

May 9, 2012
About

India has readied the first phase of an antimissile system that could quickly be set up to shield a minimum of two cities from attack, the Press Trust of India reported on Monday.

Countries