The Indian Air Force (IAF) and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully tested third Astra Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile on Wednesday. The missile hit the live aerial target near Odisha at the maximum range of approximately 90 km. The test was conducted a day after India on Tuesday successfully flight-tested the indigenously developed air-to-air missile Astra that was fired from a fighter aircraft. The state-of-the-art missile was launched from Sukhoi-30 MKI off the coast of Odisha as part of user trials by the IAF, said a statement released by the Defence Ministry.
Designed by the DRDO, the beyond visual range Astra missile is capable of engaging targets of different ranges and altitude, defence sources said. The sophisticated missile has a strike range of over 70 km, they said.
It has a 15-kg high-explosive pre-fragmented warhead, the sources added.
"The live aerial target was engaged accurately demonstrating the capability of first indigenous air-to-air missile," the statement said.
Noting that the mission profile was executed in a textbook manner, it said various radars, Electro-Optical Tracking System (EOTS) and sensors tracked the missile and confirmed its engagement with target.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh congratulated the DRDO and IAF teams for the successful test, the statement said.