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India signs contracts to acquire air and coastal defence systems

The maximum range of the Indian Army's Akash Weapon System, seen here taking part in the full dress rehearsal for the Republic Day parade 2023, is 30 km and it can hit targets at a maximum elevation of 18 km. (Money Sharma/AFP via Getty Images)

The Indian Ministry of Defence (MoD) has awarded contracts to supply Akash Weapon System (AWS), next-generation maritime mobile coastal batteries-long range (NGMMCB-LR), and BrahMos missiles to the Indian Armed Forces.

On 30 March 2023, the MoD signed a contract worth INR81.6 billion (USD993 million) with state-owned missile manufacturer Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) to procure two improved AWSs for the Indian Army.

According to the MoD, the contract for the improved AWS for the 3rd and 4th regiments of army air defence comprises missiles and launchers with upgrades, ground support equipment, vehicles, and infrastructure.

The MoD said that the AWS is a short-range surface-to-air missile (SRSAM) air-defence system, designed and developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). BDL is the production partner of the system.

A BDL official told Janes that an AWS regiment comprises a long-range surveillance radar, a target and missile tracking radar, a troop control centre, and launchers.

The maximum range of the system is 30 km and it can hit targets at a maximum elevation of 18 km, the BDL official said. The speed of the missile ranges from Mach 1.8 to 2.5 and it has the capabilities to neutralise aerial threats such as fighter jets, cruise missiles, and air-to-surface missiles, he added.

According to Janes Land Warfare Platforms: Artillery & Air Defence ,

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