The Indian air force which is one of the most advanced and 4th largest air force in the world relies on its missiles to provide dominance in the sky. Over the years with the change in the generations of the fighter jets the missile used are also transformed. The missiles used are basically categorised into guided, unguided, special purpose missile. Each of the missiles is meant for specific functions and are used only when the scenario projects itself. We have analysed some of the missiles that are in use and is important for aspirants:
1. PYTHON 5
ORIGIN : Israel
TYPE: Air-to-Air, Long Range.
SPEED : MACH 4
One of the most advanced air to air missile in the world the python 5 serves in the IAF. The BVR ( beyond visual Range) missile is capable of locking on a target post-launch and is manoeuvrable.
ORIGIN : Russia
Type: Cruise missile, Land-Attack Type
SPEED: .72-.88 MACH
The Russian missile is a two staged and has a soil fuel propulsion system.Primarily designed to be used in ground attack aircraft like the MIG27 they can also be fitted in the Su-30, air dominance fighter.
3. R.550 Magic
Type : Air-to-Air, Short Range
SPEED: 4 MACH
The missile was initially built to compete with the sidewinder od the USA. The airframe of the missile in done with moveable wings making it independent of the firing platform. The missile is independent because of its passive infrared homing technology making it more potent.
Type : Short-to-medium Range, Land attack missile
SPEED : 1.3 MACH
The laser guided missile used for a land attack is used in the Indian JAGUAR jets, the missile has a precision hit capability and has a 97% hit rate. The missile also has MCLOS system enabling it to be controlled with a small joystick.
ORIGIN : France
TYPE: Land attack, anti-radar
SPEED: .9 MACH
The MARTEL means missile,anti-radiation,television, these refer to the guidance capability of the missile. The subsonic missile is used for static targets as it houses high firepower than speed.
Type: Air-to-Air,Short- Medium range
SPEED: 4 MACH
The missile is used for short air to air attacks and of ‘fire and forget’ type. The thrust vector control in the missile makes it agile, thus making it potent. It is used in Mirange-2000.
TYPE: Short range, Air-To-Air
SPEED: 2.5 MACH
The Russian-made missile is one of the most durable air to air missile in the world that can perform in all weather conditions. The missile has an infra-red coming technology and can be controlled by a helmet controlled system. Used in Mig-21 and Mig-29 of the IAF
ORIGIN: United Kingdom
TYPE: Short range, Air-to-Air
SPEED: 3 MACH
The missile is being sued as a replacement for the less reliable sidewinder in airforces around the world. As the name suggest advanced short range air to air missile is potent for it ability to outrun other IR missiles.It uses an infrared homing technology.
TYPE: BVR, Air to Air
SPEED: 4.5 MACH
The indigenous beyond visual range missile is built to kill the enemy in a long range.The guidance of the missile is through terminal active radar seeker, this enables it to track the target on a continuous basis.The missile is built to be inducted into all the fighter jets o the IAF.
Special purpose Missiles of the Indian air force:
10. Anti-Radiation Missile
TYPE: anti- radiation, guided missile
The anti-radiation missile is specifically designed for one purpose that is to destroy enemy radar and transmitter. The missile has a range of 110-125 km is in advanced development stage.The US, Russia and Germany have this technology,
TYPE: Anti-ship Missile
SPEED: .92 MACH
The missile is specifically designed to attack ships from the sky.The missile is guided inertially, turns on the active radar late in its flight to hit the target with precision.The Missile is used in Indian Mirage and jaguar in the case of an attack on ships.
The anti-tank missile that was designed and developed in India has proven its capabilities in the world. The air-launched version of the missile that is built to attack tank is used in JAGUAR jets of the IAF. This makes Indian among few nations that can use Jet to attack tanks .
The Su-30 is being tested for its capability to use the Bhramos missile under its arm so If the test proves right India will the first nation in the world to poses supersonic missile in a fighter jet. 40 Su-30 are being been designed to accommodate this feat. The missile technology of India has grown relatively over the years and thus, it will not be far from now that India will make more missile for its own aircraft based on the Indian conditions and usage to defend the nation.