Wednesday, May 29, 2024

BrahMos: India’s Choicest Weapon For Tactical Missions

By Staff Correspondent

BrahMos Aerospace – the Joint Venture (JV) defence entity between the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India and NPO Mashinostroyeniya (NPOM) of Russia – is the producer of world’s most powerful supersonic cruise missile system BrahMos. 

The state-of-the-art precision guided missile traces its roots to the signing of a historic Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) between India and Russia on February 12, 1998. The IGA paved the way for the establishment of BrahMos Aerospace. The JV enterprise involving DRDO and NPOM is responsible for the design, development, production and marketing of the formidable BrahMos Weapon System. 

The ‘confluence’ of two best scientific-technical institutions from India and Russia working ‘hand-in-hand’ has become the finest testimony of co-development and co-production of world’s most potent tactical weapon.  

A Weapon For Modern Maritime Combat Missions

On June 12, 2001, supersonic BrahMos underwent its maiden successful test firing from a land-based launcher off the Odisha coast in eastern India. The spectacular launch validated the missile’s impeccable anti-ship capability. As a state-of-the-art weapon, BrahMos continued to evolve and charted newer milestones thereafter. 

Indian Navy became the first force to deploy BrahMos on its frontline surface combat platforms starting from 2005. Several frontline naval warships of India are armed with the supersonic cruise missile system. As the ‘prime strike weapon’, BrahMos has validated its anti-ship and land strike capability from naval warships, including large guided missile destroyers and stealth frigates, from stand-off ranges beyond radar horizons. The powerful weapon has thus established its mettle to precisely engage a target in the high sea or deep in land. 

BrahMos Ship-based Weapon Complex is a state-of-the-art combat system designed to carry out precision strikes against ships and coastal targets at beyond radar horizons. Featuring a modular design, the combat system can be integrated with various class of surface ships, including Guided Missile Destroyers (DDGs) and Guided Missile Frigates (FFGs). The system, equipped with supersonic BrahMos, can undertake anti-ship and land-attack operations in multi-threat maritime environment from stand-off ranges. 

With its inclusion in Indian Navy, BrahMos has enourmously bolstered India’s maritime combat readiness in both littoral and high sea warzones. 

“Besides our world-class Weapon System, our strength also lies in satisfaction of our customer – our Armed Forces. We believe in best after-sales product support and our forces are quite happy in this regard. We are able to satisfy our services units in the Armed Forces who received the fastest weapon system several years ago. Our first delivered systems are in best-serviced, finest operational condition and we take immense pride in this fact. Even if any issue comes, we are able to resolve it in shortest possible time,” says Dr. Sanjeev Kr Joshi, Deputy CEO of BrahMos Aerospace.

Bolstering Indian Army’s Land Warfare Capability

Indian Army became the world’s first and only ground force to possess a modern precision guided weapon having formidable land attack capability. The Army started fielding the mobile land-based BrahMos configuration from 2007 onward and has raised several BrahMos land-attack cruise missile (LACM) regiments till date. 

The weapon’s advanced Block I, II and III configurations, each having distinct capability to engage and neutralise high-value strategic enemy positions on land, have fortified Indian Army’s prowess to carry out land warfare missions from varied land terrains and in highly complex conflict environments. 

BrahMos Land-based Weapon Complex is designed to carry out modern land warfare operations in divergent conflict scenarios from varied and difficult land terrains. The system is capable of engaging and neutralising high-value ground positions without getting detected by enemy’s air defence systems. 

The Indian Air Force has also raised BrahMos LACM squadron. 

Ultimate ‘Stand-off’ Weapon Of Indian Air Force

On 20th January 2020, the highly advanced BrahMos air-launched cruise missile (ALCM) system integrated on the Indian Air Force’s Sukhoi-30MKI strike fighter platform was commissioned into service. Prior to its induction, BrahMos ALCM underwent a series of successful test firings against sea and land-based targets between 2017 and 2019. 

IAF’s formidable “Tigersharks” squadron consisting the super-lethal Su-30MKI-BrahMos-A weapon-platform combination has become India’s most powerful strategic asset to undertake modern air combat operations from large, stand-off ranges. In terms of firepower, range, lethality and effectiveness, BrahMos-A is the most potent conventional airborne weapon worldwide. 

BrahMos Air-launched Cruise Missile (ALCM) is an advanced 2.5-ton weapon deployed on the IAF’s frontline Su-30MKI platform. The ALCM has established its impeccable precision strike capability against sea-surface and land-based targets from large, stand-off ranges in all-weather, day-and-night conditions. 

A Supersonic Journey Filled With Incredible Milestones

The BrahMos JV has charted newer milestones by developing and successfully testing the powerful BrahMos in different configurations – land-to-land, land-to-sea, sea-to-land, sea-to-sea, air-to-sea and air-to-land. The weapon has also validated its underwater launch capability during a test firing conducted in 2013. Formidable BrahMos has established an illustrious, unbeatable success record worldover. 

The ‘universal’ missile with its ‘across-the-spectrum’ warfare capability has completed India’s “supersonic cruise missile triad.” In over the two decades of its spectacular journey, the BrahMos JV has achieved numerous historic milestones and realised many “firsts” in the country.

Strengthening The Pledge For ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ 

As a flagbearer of ‘Make-in-India’ in defence indigenisation, BrahMos JV has realised several breakthroughs and successfully incorporated many critical indigenous technologies and components in the BrahMos weapon system in close coordination with DRDO. The ‘Missile Industrial Consortium’ (MIC) established as part of the JV has been playing a pivotal role in this direction. 

The MIC has involved a large number of small, medium, large public and private sector defence enterprises along with defence laboratories, institutions and academia – each contributing immensely in the BrahMos design, development and integration programme.

With the successful indigenisation of many critical technologies, systems and sub-systems, the overall production, operational and maintenance costs of the Weapon System has come down over the years. It has also bolstered India’s national security apparatus manifold. 

Continuing The Superlative Performance

A series of successful test firings of BrahMos conducted in 2022 from frontline ground, naval and air platforms of India has reaffirmed the missile’s enhanced capabilities and ensured its superlative performance. 

“As a state-of-the-art system, BrahMos has continued to evolve. By infusing more technological upgrades and other enhanced features, we have sharpened the power, lethality and strike capability of BrahMos. It has become India’s choicest weapon for tactical operations,” says Shri Atul D Rane, Director General, BrahMos, DRDO and CEO & MD, BrahMos Aerospace.  

Carving Global Footprint

On January 28, 2022, the supersonic cruise missile carved its global footprint as BrahMos Aerospace signed a historic export contract with the Republic of Philippines to deliver shore-based BrahMos anti-ship weapon system to the Armed Forces of Philippines. With this landmark feat, the tactical missile became India’s first full-scale weapon to enter the international arms market. 

“With this historic export deal, BrahMos JV successfully realised its farsighted ‘Mind-to-Market’ goal. It became a watershed moment for BrahMos, DRDO and for the entire Nation. As we move closer to commence the delivery of this formidable weapon system, the world will witness a paradigm shift in customer care, customer training, quality of deliverables and after-sales support,” the Dy CEO of BAPL had stated in an interview conducted by IADB in 2022. 

The powerful BrahMos has also garnered interest among several other countries across continents which are looking forward to acquire the deadly precision strike weapon for their military. 

BrahMos-NG To Revolutionise Tomorrow’s Battlefields 

To retain its leadership position in the world, the India-Russia JV entity has initiated work to design and develop the more advanced BrahMos next-generation (NG) weapon system. The new, futuristic weapon would be designed as a smaller, lighter and stealthier variant of existing BrahMos for deployment onto a wider number of modern military platforms across land, sea, underwater and air in more numbers. 

Combining high-end technologies along with superior design and other enhanced features, BrahMos-NG would redefine and revolutionise the battlefields of tomorrow.


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