Indigenously designed Pinaka rocket system with extended range test-fired

Published : December 11, 2021 18:39 IST

The Pinaka-ER rocket system being test-fired at Pokhran, Rajasthan, on December 11. Photo: By Special Arrangement

Pinaka-ER, an extended version of the indigenously designed and developed, all-weather, Pinaka multi-barrel rocket system, was successfully test-fired by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) at Rajasthan’s Pokhran Range on December 11. The rocket launcher system has been jointly designed by two laboratories of the DRDO: the Armament Research & Development Establishment (ARDE) and High Energy Materials Research Laboratory (HEMRL), both located in Pune.

The new Pinaka has a range of over 70 km, compared to the 45 km range of the Pinaka rocket system that has been deployed by the Indian Army for over a decade. It gives a deep strike option to the ground forces and is capable of hitting critical military installations.

The system was deployed on India’s borders with China during the tensions that flared up in Ladakh last May.

The successful tests of the Pinaka-ER marks the completion of the initial phase of technology absorption and the start of the series production phase of the rocket system by the DRDO’s industry partner. The industry partner has already begun manufacturing the rockets with DRDO’s supervision during the production and quality assurance (QA) stages.

In an official statement, the Ministry of Defence said: “The DRDO, along with the Army, conducted a series of performance evaluation trials. In these trials, enhanced range Pinaka rockets were test-fired at different ranges with various warhead capabilities. All the trial objectives were met satisfactorily. 24 rockets were fired for different ranges and warhead capabilities to meet the objectives of accuracy and consistency.”

Tests on variants of the Area Denial Munition (ADM) designed by ARDE for the Pinaka and manufactured by industry partners under technology transfer were also successfully carried out at the Pokhran Field Firing Ranges. These trials are part of performance evaluation under technology absorption.

Along with the Pinaka-ER and ADM tests, DRDO also successfully conducted tests on proximity fuzes that have been indigenously developed for the Pinaka rockets. Developed by the ARDE in different sizes for different applications, the fuzes have been evaluated with flight-testing after design validation trials and dynamic performance evaluation. The consistency of performance of these fuzes has been established in consecutive flight trials.

These indigenously developed fuzes will replace the currently used imported fuzes, contributing to a saving of foreign exchange. An official from the DRDO said: “Performance of dual-purpose Direct-Action Self Destruction (DASD) and Anti-Tank Munition (ATM) fuzes were also evaluated during the current flight trials and the results were satisfactory.”

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