Sunday, June 24, 2012

India Begins $2.2-billion QR-SAM Procurement Effort

The Indian government has cleared the way for a massive procurement effort for quick-reaction surface-to-air missiles (QR-SAMs) to arm eight air defence regiments of the Indian Army. The missiles are intended to replace obsolete Soviet air defence systems, most of which are unserviceable anyway.

As I reported a year ago, MBDA will be pitching the in-development Indo-French joint short-range surface to air missile (SR-SAM) or Maitri for the competition, in the hope that "enhanced synergies" will see a concept weapon get its big break even before its fully operational. It is not clear if MBDA will field any other product. I hear that MBDA has competition from the Rafael-IAI SpyDer, an upgraded version of Raytheon's MIM-23 Hawk or modified SLAMRAAM  and the Russian TOR M1 9M330.

The Army, as I reported a year ago, is looking for a QR-SAM system with a reaction time of six seconds or less, with an engagement range of 9-15 km at altitudes of not less than 6 km. It's looking for a weapon that delivers a single shot kill probability (SSKP) of at least 70% for a single missile fired, and 85% for a salvo shot involving two missiles. The missile also needs to be able to threats moving at speeds ranging from 0 km/h (a hovering helicopter) to 500 m/s on fast jets. The Army is hoping for systems that deploy missiles that have ECCM capabilities and compatibility with vehicles currently in use. The full parameters are here.

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