|Arthur Dominic Villasanta |||May 23, 2017 12:27 PM EDT|
(Photo : Indian Navy) Test launch of a Barak 8 or LRSAM from the guided missile destroyer, INS Kolkata.
The Indian Navy has awarded a $630 million contract to Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), Israel's largest aerospace and defense company, to supply long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) defense systems for four of its warships.
LRSAM, which is known in Israel as the Barak 8, is an advanced air and missile defense system jointly developed by IAI and India's Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
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Other companies that collaborated in the project are IAI's subsidiaries ELT and RAFAEL; Israel's Administration for the Development of Weapons and Technological Infrastructure and Indian companies, including state-owned Bharat Electronics Ltd. (BEL), which serves as the main contractor in the project as part of India's "Make in India" policy.
Among the elements that comprise LRSAM are advanced phased-array radars (MFSTAR); command and control systems; launchers and interceptor missiles with advanced radio-frequency (RF) seekers.
The LRSAM system provides protection against a range of aerial, naval and airborne threats. It's operational in the Indian Air Force, Indian Navy and in the near future in the Indian Army.
Before signing the contract, LRSAM was successfully tested last week in India aboard an Indian Navy warship to demonstrate the system's operational capabilities with a genuine target.
The $630 million contract follows an Indian Army purchase last March of 200 Medium Range Surface-to-Air Missile (MRSAM) systems, the land-based version of the naval Barak-8 missile to be jointly produced by India and Israel in a massive deal worth $2.5 billion.
The army's MRSAMs will arm 40 launcher systems in five regiments and are expected to be deployed by 2023. A complete MRSAM system consists of a command and control system, tracking radar, interceptors and a mobile launcher system.
Each launcher will have eight MRSAMs in two stacks. The interceptors are launched in a canister configuration. The system is also fitted with an advanced radio frequency (RF) seeker.
India and Israel will co-develop and produce MRSAM. The Indian end of the project will be taken care of by state-owned Bharat Dynamics, Ltd (BDL) in partnership with other state-owned and private defense companies.
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