Here is all you need to know about Akash:
Akash is indigenously developed a medium-range mobile surface-to-air missile defense system, developed as part of Integrated Missile Development Programme of the 1980s.
The missiles have been developed by Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) along with 13 other DRDO labs and manufactured by defence PSU Bharat Dynamics Limited.
Its launchers were developed by a DRDO lab and produced by Tata Power and L&T.
This surface-to-air missile system has an interception range of 30 km i.e. it can target an aircraft up to 30 km and at altitudes up to 18,000 metres.
It is capable of destroying both aircraft and warheads from ballistic missiles if it is equipped with a nuclear warhead. It can carry warhead of about 60 kg.
Akash is currently is in operational service with the Indian Army and Air Force.
Akash's induction has also led to scrapping of the long pending discussions with France to develop the 'Maitri' short-range SAMs at a cost of around Rs 30,000 crore.
Technical aspects of Akash
• Akash's battery comprises four 3D passive electronically scanned array radars and four launchers with three missiles each.
• It can carry 60 kg high-explosive, pre-fragmented warhead with a proximity fuse.
• Its system is fully mobile and also capable of protecting a moving convoy. Its SAM provides air defence missile coverage for an area of 2,000 km square.
• The 5.6 metre long missile can track and destroy hostile aircraft, choppers, drones and sub-sonic cruise missiles.
• It is equipped with integrated two-stage Ramjet rocket propulsion technology and powered by an air-breathing engine.
• Its low reaction and property of working in all-weather conditions will help the Army and Air Force become handy it in the terrains of northeast.
• The 96 per cent indigenous missile can track up to 64 targets and attack up to 12.
• It can handle multiple aerial threats from several directions simultaneously and has 88 per cent kill probability within a specified kill zone.
• IAF is inducting eight squadrons of Akash, each comprising two flights of four launchers. It will cost Rs 6,200 crore to the IAF.
• Army is inducting 2 Akash regiments with six firing batteries and hundreds of missiles each, will cost Rs 14,180 crore.
How will Akash help in neutralizing Chinese aggression?
As per a TOI report, the defence ministry sources on Thursday said IAF has started getting deliveries of the six Akash missile squadrons earmarked for the eastern theatre. The next six squadrons, as approved by the Cabinet Committee on Security, are to guard against any threat from the northern borders.
India has already deployed its most potent Sukhoi-30MKI fighters in Assam's Tezpur and Chabua.