As we know, India is the fourth largest military power in the world after USA, Russia and China. With the ever changing global scenarios, threat of terrorism and territorial disputes raging in the Asian region it was necessary for India to upgrade its defence mechanism and maintain some of the most hi-tech and advanced weapons in the world.
India is one of the largest weapons importer of the world and its set to be the highest military spender by the year 2020. It’s is also developing many indigenous weapons through DRDO, HAL and other premier defence R&D organization of the country.
Here is the list of the most advanced weapons possessed by the Indian Army, Navy and the Air Force:
This multi barrel rocket launch system was indigenously developed by the Defense Research and Development Organization ( DRDO ) for the Indian Army. It has proved its combat worthiness in the hostile and cold high altitude environment during the Kargil war in 1999 where it neutralized enemy targets perched on mountain tops . It has a range of 4 km with the capability of launching 12 rockets under 50 seconds and it can be reloaded with a replenishment vehicle within 4 minutes. The inertial navigation system gives it the accuracy needed to hit a moving object by calculating its position and orientation. Future plans include developing a 7.2 meter rocket for Pinaka MBRL which would have a range of 120 km with the capacity to carry a 250 kg payload. These new rockets would have a maximum speed of mach 4.7 and these could destroy an area of 3.9 square kilometers.
NAG Anti-Tank Missile
This Anti-Tank missile system is indigenously developed by DRDO at a cost of 3 billion INR. This missile carries 8 kg of high explosives which can penetrate any tank armour and engages targets at ranges up to 5 km. One of the biggest features of this missile is it doesn’t have a smoke trail which keeps the firing vehicle hidden from the enemy. Its burns a smokeless propellant which makes tracking the missile almost impossible. Weighing in at 42 kg this missile can travel at a mind boggling 230 meters per second towards its target and has a CEP of 0.9 meters with an accuracy of 0.77 meters around the target.
AWACS means Airborne Early Warning and Control System which can be used to detect enemy aircrafts, vehicles, ships as well as submarines at long range giving India protection against TRIAD which means defense against sea, air and land borne attacks. India uses Russian Il – 76 aircraft mounted with Elta EL/w-2090 Radars manufactured by Israel. IL-76 planes have a mid air refueling capability ensuring AWACS remains airborne for an unlimited time to perform roles like surveillance of enemy targets, command centre to guide the forces and destruction of enemy ships and submarines if needed by the missiles carried by IL-76 airplanes.
The Elta EL/w-2090 uses an active phased array radar known as active electronically scanned array (AESA) which allows a radar beam to be electronically steered therefore no need for a rotating rotodome as its been associated with in many Hollywood movies.
T-90S Bhishma Battle Tank
The Bhishma as its known in India is the T-90S battle tank bought from Russia due to the delays in the release of indigenous Arjun Main Battle Tank. It is a mixture of the T-80 U and the T-72 B with a superior armor, fire control and overall mobility on the battleground. Majority of the Indian Infantry regiments were trained on the T-72 platform therefore it was logical to induct the T-90S as it had similar features simplifying the training and maintenance procedures. This tank comes with a host of features like a 125 mm 2A46M smoothbore stabilized gun with thermal covering, it can deep snorkel in 5m deep water, it has an improved mobility and an advanced fire control system including a day and night sighting system mounted on commanders station allowing detection of targets in the range between 700 to 100 meter during night time operations.
As with all Russian equipment, this tanks are robust and go on with little or no mid-life improvement for 3 decades.
INS Vikramaditya meaning ” Brave as the sun ” is the second aircraft carrier to join Indian Navy after INS Viraat in 2013. It’s basically a Kiev – class aircraft carrier which was also known as Admiral Gorshkov in the Russian Navy. This carrier was purchased by Indian in 2004 at a price of 2.35 Billion and commissioned on 16th Nov, 2013 after completing all of her sea and aviation trials.
This 45000 ton behemoth is a Short Take Off, Barrier Arrested Runway (STOBAR) platform and carries 20 MIG-29 K aircraft as well as 4 KA-31 AEW helicopters for early warning and four KA-27 helicopters anti-submarine warfare as well as search and rescue. It has a superstructure profile which enables easy installation of a powerful planar or phased array radar systems along with extensive command and control facilities to conduct effective sea and land based campaigns.
INS Chakra ( Nuclear Submarine )
Its an Akula-Class nuclear submarine known as K-152 Nerpa leased to Indian Navy in 2011 and was commissioned as INS Chakra on 4th April 2012. It has a displacement of 10,000 tons and cruises at 30 knots which is double the speed of conventional diesel submarines. This vessel is armed with four 533mm torpedo tubes and four 650mm torpedo tubes which would be used to hunt and kill enemy ships.
With the induction of INS Chakra, India joined US, Russia, UK, France and China, the elite group of nations having nuclear-powered submarines. It is likely to be followed by the induction of by indigenously built INS Arihant, another nuclear powered submarine with the capability of nuclear warfare.
INS Vishakapatnam ( Destroyer )
It is first of the four P15-B class destroyers indigenously developed by Mazagon Dock Limited inducted in the Indian Navy on April, 2015. Billed as the largest and the most powerful destroyer to be commissioned in the navy made entirely of the steel produced in India. The 4 gas turbines can propel, this vessel upto speeds of 30 knots. It will have 8 supersonic Brahmos anti ship and surface to surface missiles, Israeli Multi-Function surveillance threat radar synchronized with 32 Barak-8 long range surface to air missiles and a climate control system to keep crew safe and operational during nuclear and biological warfare.
Brahmos Supersonic Missile
The name represents two great rivers ie Brahmputra (India) and Moskva (Russia) and it’s a joint venture between DRDO and NPO Mashinostroyenia costing US $13 billion.
It is a short range ramjet supersonic cruise missile capable of carrying nuclear warheads. It can be launched from aircrafts, ships, submarines and land platforms. It’s also the worlds fastest cruise missile capable of doing mach 2.8 to 3.0. Since it flies at such high speeds it has 9 times more kinetic range as compared to other cruise missiles in operation now. It’s highly accurate and can be guided to its target by using an onboard computer.