Defence Minister Arun Jaitley on 27 August 2017 handed over the Long-Range Surface-to-Air Missile (LRSAM) jointly developed by India and Israel, to the Indian Navy, at Bharat Dynamics Ltd (BDL) here. LRSAM is an advanced combat suit for missile defence against air targets and missiles, and has full capabilities of air and surface surveillance, threat alert and fire control.
Public sector BDL is the missile production agency for the three armed forces. On a day of hectic activity, the minister also dedicated a first-of-i-s kind 50-tonne Rocket Motor Static Test Facility. The ₹48-crore facility for SAM (surface-to-air missile) will support the design and vendor development activities needed for production of missiles. These efforts were hitherto shouldered by the Defence Research and Development Organisation DRDO as the development agency.
BDL is now equipped to take the responsibility on its own, which has been actively guided for realisation and establishment by DRDO. Later, Jaitley inaugurated the ASTRA Manufacturing Unit at the BDL’s Bhanur unit. The ASTRA weapon system is an indigenously developed air-to-air Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missile developed by the DRDO. Comprising a launcher and a missile, it is designed as a BVR missile with a range of 110 km in head-on mode and 20 km in tail-chase mode. BVR missiles are the latest in air-to-air combat. BDL has been designated as the Lead Integrator by the DRDO.